Chandra with @RusticReSouled on Instagram WON the giveaway!! Her story will be read this week and posted via YouTube!
In 1998 I was 27, single, and working in the San Fernando Valley. Yep, I am an original “Valley Girl”, like the cheesy song from the 80’s.
While on the job, working in consumer lending, I happened to meet the man I would marry 3 years later. Mike was in sales and happened to frequent the same clients that I did.
We were introduced and made a date for lunch (although I was the one who initiated it because he was pretty shy!) As I was seated across from him on our first lunch date, he told me that he had lost his wife 14 months before and was raising their 6 year old daughter alone. He told me that his wife, Loretta, was his high school sweetheart. They had met when they were 14 and had been married 10 years when she passed away at the young age of 33. Her passing was completely unexpected although she had been diagnosed with Lupus as a teen. He told me that she was his best friend and that he loved being married and being a dad to their daughter, Shea. He also made it clear that although he was hopeful that he could find love again someday, his daughter was his number one priority above dating or anything else.
I gotta be honest, after he spoke those words, I was already in love.
He asked if it was too much to get involved with him and I emphatically said no!
The evening of my first “date” meeting Shea came a couple of months after we’d met. He was confident that it was safe to introduce his little girl to me. Over the few months we’d been seeing each other we had covered a lot of emotional territory. We were in love , shared a love for Christ and both of us wanted to grow a family.
The moment I sat across from this little blonde haired, freckle-faced girl, I knew that God had somehow had His hand in it. I believe in free will and that God grants that. But I had prayed so hard before I met Mike that He would lead me to the person He wanted me to spend my life with.
Shea never stopped talking that night over dinner. She was so happy and excited to meet me and…(To be continued on our Monday episode)…
(Picture courtesy of: Instagram @RusticReSouled)
UPDATE..The video for the full letter is here: