How We Met

It's funny whenever someone asks when we first met. The truth is that we first met during our Sophomore year of high school but our first conversation and date wasn't until college.

I don't remember the very first time I saw Brett, but we both remember the names Haley McAllister and Brett Birkeland being called from the press box at EHS at the local track meets. We were always rivals. Brett ran for Olympus and I ran for East and in the summers he ran for Mercury while I ran for the Cheetahs. I remember watching Brett long jump and talking with my coach about his jumping form. Brett apparently thought I was out of his league so he never talked to me, and I took his not talking to me as him being full of himself, so nothing ever happened in high school. Pity. It is amusing to look through our track and field photos from high school ,because 9 times out of 10 he is in the background of my photos. I can't believe he was right under my nose the whole time.

Track brought us back together again when we saw one another at the BYU indoor meet in January of 2006. True to form, we were still rivals, but this time I was wearing the UTAH red while Brett wore the BYU blue.

One thing lead to another, and after months of flirting and quoting Audrey Hepburn movies, we finally went on our first date on April 20, 2006.

We went to the place where we first saw each other years before, at the EHS track. We climbed on top of the pressbox, equipped with Twizzlers, Hershey Kisses, caramel corn and my lap top. We watched the sunset and after I killed Brett in a few rounds of Egyptian Rat, we watched Roman Holiday (after all, we had been quoting it for a few months.)

After that night we were hooked. :) We spent every waking moment together that summer... going to the zoo, talking at the park, going for walks, laughing at nothing, dancing in the moonlight, and stargazing... until the time came for Brett to serve the Lord in Canada!

Brett lived in Canada for 2 years as a full time missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. He was braving the freezing winters there while I ran Track and Field and worked at a Jewish Camp (go figure.)

We wrote every week and kept one another's spirits high with cards, tapes, and incredibly well thought out packages.

Brett served in many different areas. At one point he was in Sept Iles, 700 miles north east of Montreal. Then he spent a significant amount of time in the heart of Montreal working primarily with Haitians. He had a wonderful time speaking their language and learning from their happy and relaxed attitude.

We had wonderful experiences while apart, but couldn't have waited another day to see each other once again :)

First of all, Brett's flight was canceled because of thunderstorms! So I had to wait an entire day longer... His family was improperly notified of the time of his new flight, so Brett actually came home and no one was there to greet him! Poor guy! and then because he got in on the 24th, his Stake Pres was out of town, so he wasn't even released until the next afternoon. So, let me tell you, even when I thought I was completely calm and that the last day wouldn't be a problem, God decided to test my patience one last time.

Brett finally called me after he was released and we decided to meet at his brother and sister in law's house (Brian and Angie, they are a couple we hung out with very often before he left, and I got very close with them while he was away... so it was a perfect way to meet up around people we really care about and are comfortable with.) I was still pretty calm considering waiting an extra day... but as soon as I got to the stop light before their house my heart was doing somersaults in my chest.

I ran up to the house wearing my "Hello Brett" outfit and Brett's Brother was sitting on the porch with a camera and this big smile on his face and said, "Hey Beautiful, pose for the camera!"... and all I could think to say was... "Where is he!!!" haha... so I was just standing there in the front yard looking around with no clue where he was. "Where is he!" I was smiling so big, but I was starting to get antsy. The door opens... and out comes... Angie... Brett's sister-in-law... I was officially getting flustered... I was literally jumping up and down...

Then I finally heard (in the voice that makes me melt) the words, "There you are..." from my right. And there he was... walking along the side of the house holding a sunflower. I couldn't contain my excitement. We both cleared the gap between us in a flash (we both run college track) and I almost took him out. I wrapped by arms around his neck and he wrapped his arms around me, holding my waist and side in a big bear hug. We just stood there and hugged and smiled. I don't remember anything that was said, and I forgot Brian and Angie were even there, but they got some really cute pics of us together. After a few minutes they asked us to turn for a photo... but we didn't want to stop hugging. Hahaha... So we both just turned sideways within the hug.

I didn't let go of him for the first hour at least, whether we were hugging, holding hands, or had our arms around each other. it was like I was reminding myself he was actually right there. It was so surreal because we hadn't seen one another in so long that it felt like everything before was just a dream... and then all of a sudden the dream came back to reality.

That feeling didn't last long though, within 15 minutes or so it felt like he had never left and I wondered how on earth I had survived the last two years without him. There are still times when we are together that we both just say... "I can't believe you are right there..."

We've loved just talking and being near one another again. My favorite first nights were spent on our park bench in the lamp light, laughing and telling stories. I said one of those first nights, "Can you believe we made it this far?"... he smiled and said, "I always knew we would."

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