Saturday, June 07, 2008

06-07-08 = 11

Today is our 11th anniversary. This is long and mostly written for myself as a journal entry, but feel free to enjoy our love story if you would like.

I saw Jarom standing afar on my first day of Jr. High. He immediately caught my eye and I asked around until I found out who he was. Somehow I managed to become friends with him and it was an instant bond. I had a crush on him throughout my 7th and 8th grade years, but alas, he liked my best friend instead. So I moved on and began my dating career. And although I dated many guys, Jarom was always a best friend to me. We would chat on the phone for hours and hang out as friends. And for some odd reason we always held hands when we were together. It wasn't a boyfriend-girlfriend hand lock, it was a "we are best friends from the very depth of our souls" hand lock. Like two little children who are inseparable.

When I entered high school I had the time of my life, dating away. Jarom had confessed his love to me (I told him he didn't know what he was talking about.), but I was over him at the time. I wanted to play and date a lot. But still, faithful Jarom was constantly by my side. I had not considered him as anything but a friend until one night the guy that I was in a serious relationship with said to me, "Elena you know you love Jarom." It was like a light bulb went on in my head. I did love Jarom. More than anything and suddenly I couldn't imagine EVER being without him.

I gushed my feelings to him in a note, (Isn't that the way everything was done in high school?) terrified that telling him I liked him as more than a friend would ruin everything we had. As soon as he read it, he grabbed me and took me for a ride in his car. He asked me what we were going to do about all "this". I told him, "nothing." To which he replied, "Whatever! I've waited too long to just do nothing about you." From that moment on we were an item. Exclusive and VERY much in love. (No one will ever be able to convince me that you can't really be in love and be young.)

He truly felt like a part of my soul. (He always had, but allowing the feelings of more than friendship to enter our relationship exaggerated it quite a bit.) I was NEVER nervous around Jarom and felt his unconditional love for me in everything I did. We started talking marriage long before we were old enough to really even think about it. And then Jarom decided he was going to serve a mission for our church.

I decided to move to Boise and go to school while he served his two year mission. I'll be honest, it wasn't easy for either of us. I felt like the breath had been sucked out of me for a while. And yep, I dated other guys while he was gone. But it never felt like that comfortable "I'm home" feeling I got when I was with Jarom. The minute he returned from his mission those feelings came flooding back. We felt like we hadn't missed a beat.

We were engaged 3 weeks later (He recreated our first date by taking me to dinner at the Loft and then proposed to me down by the falls.) and married 4 months after he got home. Jarom is my soul mate. We've been through thick and thin together (getting more to the thick stage of life now) and I am so grateful that I married my best friend. I love you Jarom, you stupid, stupid man! (It's a line from Everybody Loves Raymond that we like to quote around here.)

My room mates in college introduced me to Steven Curtis Chapman and I fell in love with "I Will Be Here." Jarom surprised me by singing it to me at our wedding luncheon and it has been "our song" ever since. This is a fairly long video, but listening to the song is worth watching all 4 minutes.

21 comments:

Deanna said...

THat was intensely beautiful! Congratulations on 11 years, and Happy Anniversary!

P.S. - Alyssa is a mini YOU!!! WOW!

hope you have a wonderful day!

lee ann said...

Oh thanks for sharing that! I loved the entire story and all 4:23 of the video! Makes me want to do one now. HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!!!

Camille said...

That's a great story! And I agree, Alyssa IS a mini you!

Emily said...

Ohhhhh, your photo show gave me goosebumps! How exciting 11 years. We will be 9 in June.

I am jealous, I always wanted to be a missionaries girlfriend. LAter, I found out that Jeff was on his mission when I was like 14.

Debbie said...

Elena! I am so glad I stopped over this afternoon to see if you had anything new. It was worth watching. That was so beautiful From the bottom of my heart, I really enjoyed it. I have goosebumps everywhere...all those precious pictures and the music. Wow. Did you do that for your husband or did you already have it? Happy Anniversary! We celebrated our 10th this year...with me sick in bed with the flu. Good times.

stevie kay said...

Elena - I just bawled. That was beautiful! I'll have to go buy that song now!

Josh & Joni said...

That was so sweet!! Your "story" is so much like ours :) - I'll be posting on our anniversary in a few weeks!! Congratulations and Happy Anniversary! You have a beautiful family!!

Elena Manwaring said...

Deanna- You should see pictures of my mom, Alyssa is a mini her.

Lee Ann- Thank you and I hope you do a video of you guys I would love to see it.

Camille- I agree 100%, the best story ever.

Emily- Missionary girlfriend isn't all that it's cracked up to be. I hope my girls NEVER wait for a missionary. It's tough stuff.

Debbie- Thank you. I had intended to make it for my husband, but had to have a little help in the end. But I was proud I did most of it myself.

Stevie- You crack me up! But it makes me bawl too.

Joni- Can't wait to hear your love story!

Kade said...

11 years of marriage has gone by fast, but I can't imagine life without the both of you, or your fun kids! I'm glad we have all of you in our family.

Happy Anniversary.

becky ward said...

oh, i loved every minute! you two are too cute. happy anniversary! i don't have the best memory but i do remember when jarom picked up your engagement ring and i helped him "clean-up" the park bench and area that he wanted to propose to you at. so tender!

Jennifer P. said...

Darn it! I was hoping I could comment while the video loaded. I'm going to watch it now, but just wanted to wish you two such a happy, happy anniversary. You two really were meant for eachother. I'm glad we never were able to set Jarom up with little Jodi :)!

May you relish in that "I'm home" feeling for the rest of your lives. It's so precious.

Jennifer P. said...

Just watched it. Bawled all the way through. Boy I've known you guys a long time! Every thing from the little marroon car (wasn't it a Kia?) on is familiar!

Love you guys!

Fur said...

Happy Anniversary!! LOVED seeing those old photos. Many fun memories... :)

Elise said...

YAY! Happy Anniversary! I remember your wedding day and asking Jarom how he was feeling at your luncheon(where I helped serve the chicken cordon bleu-- I have a good memory)-- all he could say was, "She's so beautiful!" And you were! And are! Here's to 11x11 more years of happiness!

Elena's mom said...

I just now finally got to watch the video. It does bring a tear to the eye and make you say 'where did all those years go'? But it has been a good eleven years (plus!) in the making. Glad I could be there for the ride.

Kat said...

Oh, Elena...that was beautiful! All four something minutes of it. Michael and I celebrated our 12th anniversary this year...but we haven't known each other nearly as long.

Brandon & Emily said...

I remember those dance dresses from when I was little. I remember thinking how pretty you looked in them! I can't believe how long ago that was! Happy Anniversary! Love you guys tons!

Nichole Jolene said...

i watched the whole thing. definitely not too long. what a great post! I'm copying you on my 15 year next year~thanks

Jonathan & Rachel said...

What a great couple you guys are! I loved reading about your story-could be a movie! And the video was perfect! Happy Anniversary!

Miki said...

Dang...the music adds a lot!! That slide show was just so good, and it just makes me think, "how long did it take her to do that? How did she get the pictures to pan right, left, close or back?"

Mostly though, what is just amazing, is that you and I have talked on the phone soo oooo much, that I kind of see some of the phases of your life through those pictures, come to life.

Elena, that was just awesome. I really liked that song too. I can't imagine Jarom singing it, at ALLLLL! I want to hear him. I don't want to embarrass him though. I wish I could just watch through a two way mirror. It's too special to just "watch". It seems to be a thing you should only get to view if you're the one being sung to (you should be the only one to hear in other words).

Anyway, that was cool, along with the story. I'm glad you do your journaling along with other stuff on the blog. We really get in on the very personal story.

Miki said...

I actually have more thoughts than those, but I'm emailing you!