Merriam Webster defines the word "team" a couple of different ways: 1. a number of persons associated together in work or activity: such as a group on one side 2. a group of animals. Well, that definition nails us pretty well in more ways than one. And that's what I'll be uncovering here over the next several weeks! I'm going to be telling the story of us or as we affectionately call ourselves, Team Gibson. I've always wanted to sit down and right our story - mine and Corey's and go all the way back to the beginning. To when we dated in highschool. And broke up. And then got back together in junior college. It's crazy to think that we've been together over 13 years, because it's all gone by so fast. But yet, sometimes, it feels like things happened just yesterday. Ours is a story full of laughs, me rescuing yet another dog, Corey working hard to make a nice life for us, and at the heart of it all is love. Love and faith. A WHOLE lot of faith!
I never imagined I would meet the guy I would marry in high school. I thought if that was going to happen, I would have met him when I started at West Jones in 1998. I mean, surely, I would have seen him walking in the hall as a 7th grader, and say, "Oh, that's the guy I'm going to marry!" You know, like something out of a movie. But, nope. Corey and I went to school for 5 years together before we ever knew each other. He was a year ahead of me. We had so many of the same friends. And still I didn't even know who he was until I was an 11th grader. Which is very odd, and I'll explain why: our parents went to high school together. They'd always known one another. I'd made countless trips to Sawmill Animal Hospital (our vet where Corey's mom worked for 30 years) with my dad. I'd met his mom but I couldn't remember her saying she had a son. When my dad was taken severely ill when I was in 10th grade, Corey's grandfather was in the same hospital at the same time as my dad. He and his parents even came to see my mom. So many missed opportunities. So many chances to meet and yet God said, "It's not quite time." It wouldn't be until the spring of my junior year that I'd meet my better half. His timing has truly been everything for us from the very start.
I was standing at my locker in the first building at West Jones. I was late, of course, for my first class. It was May, so the mornings were already crazy hot, and there I was running like a loon to grab a book so I could walk into class to apologize for running late to Mr. Abercrombie. As I was closing the locker door, I happened to turn around and catch site of a guy at the end of the building in a white Joe's Crab Shack tee, jeans and wallabies. If you don't remember those, google it now and you'll see some of the ugliest shoes ever but we all wore them! The frat boy swoop wasn't even a thing yet, I don't think, but he had it. Kids hair was PRETTY! He was uber tan, and I immediately thought he was cute. He was picking up the roll sheets on the outside of the classroom doors. I thought he had to be an office worker because that's what those kids did after each class started. I stared for only a few seconds, and turned around because I was afraid he would see me looking. I had no idea who he was, which I remember thinking was odd because I thought I knew everyone in the grade above and below me. I hurried off to class and never guessed that he saw me, too. No clue what I was wearing but I somehow remember exactly what he had on. Crazy how little things like that I can recall, but I couldn't tell you what I had for lunch yesterday! It was later that day that I found out from a friend who was also an office worker that he'd asked her who I was. After class was over, she came to tell me he had lots of questions and said he wanted to meet me later that day to say hello. "Did he just start going here?", I asked her. "No, dummy, that's Corey Gibson!", she said. Like what planet was I living on that I didn't know who this dude was?!
Well, we missed meeting later that day before school was over, but I was going to the baseball game that night with my girlfriends. He played, so we'd planned to meet then. I found out that night I was the odd man out on knowing him and why all the other girls did: he was even hotter in a baseball uniform! Once the game was over, my girlfriends and I stood in the parking lot waiting for him. You know how it feels when you get nervous? Your stomach gets butterflies, and you start looking for anything and everything to look at except what it is that could be causing your nervousness. He started walking toward me with that thousand watt smile looking directly at me and I wanted to crawl under the truck that I was leaning next to. Of course the girls were all giggles and I was a nervous wreck. "What's up? Did y'all catch the game?", he said. Like he didn't know we'd seen it. Cheeky little thing that he was. Small talk commenced around the group and I barely said two words. I just kept looking at him. I knew he thought I was a weirdo. "You going to say hey?!", he said. I was busted. I was a puddle and all I could do was giggle and say yeah! If you know me, you know I'm not the quiet type! I've always been the person that rarely ever meets a stranger. I'll talk my head off if you'd let me! But around this dude it was like I had tape over my mouth. How in the world did we start dating, you may ask, being that I couldn't even speak to him?! That's next week's blog post, friends! Come back and find out why Piggly Wiggly (Yep - that's right! I said the Piggly Wiggly) is an important place and why there's a stop sign next to my parents house that Corey still runs to this very day! Big hugs, Shea