Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Where Dreams Really Do Come True

by Julie Coulter Bellon

I was thrilled to be accepted to BYU, but I began to wonder if it had been a mistake to come when I spent my first full day sorting out a mix-up with my dorm housing and then trying to find myself an apartment. I ended up looking at an off-campus apartment and it seemed nice so I took over the contract. The next day, one of my new roommates took me to the BEST department store to buy myself some sheets and other essentials. She seemed excited to introduce me to a guy she knew that worked there named Brian. Apparently they were friends as Brian had recently been dating her old roommate---the girl whose contract I had taken over. We went in and she introduced us. He said hello and then proceeded to talk to her, effectively ignoring me for the rest of the time I was there. I thought he was cute but a little snooty. It didn't matter. I was waiting for a missionary that was coming home the next June. (Brian claimed later he was tongue-tied because I was so beautiful.)

Since Brian and I were in the same singles ward, I saw him at ward functions and dances. He was pretty popular with the ladies and he chatted with me a few times, but that was about it. Frankly I was having such a good time dating and dancing and just being at BYU, I didn't think too much about it. That December, I'd decided to go to Greece for my Christmas holidays, but I was nervous about a few things happening in my life right then, so I asked my roommates who would be a good guy to ask for a blessing. They suggested Brian as he was one of the most spiritual men in the ward. So I got a blessing from him and I was once again struck by the fact that he was good-looking and spiritual. But again, I didn't think too much about it because I was leaving for Greece and having a lot of fun at BYU.

When I came home from Greece, I went back to school and then I got pneumonia. A bad case of it. It looked like I was going to have to go home it was so bad. But then my hero stepped in. Brian went to my professors and got my homework. He brought me videos to watch and made me dinners. We laughed and had a lot of fun together, and he even helped me with my Cha-Cha for my social dance class. I got better (both from the pneumonia and at the Cha-Cha) and we spent a lot of time together, but he never asked me out. I didn't mind because I was waiting for a missionary and Brian and I were just friends. He supposedly had told other people that he would never date anyone from that apartment again because it had ended badly with the girl I had taken the contract over from. Again, I was having such a fun time dating and going to dances, I didn't mind. I just counted him as a really great friend.

Then our singles ward went to Disneyland for Spring Break.

I was in Brian's car with him and his roommate Dan, and five other girls. Yep. FIVE other girls. In a station wagon. And one of the girls was the one Brian had told me he liked. But it was on that trip that I started to see Brian in a different light. Maybe it was the Goofy hat he wore all over Disneyland. Or maybe it was the way he held my hand on the Jungle Cruise. Or how he asked my opinion on which Mexican blanket he should buy in Tijuana. I was starting to really like him. We had spent so much time together, he had become one of my best friends. But we hadn't dated and I didn't know how he really felt about me. I mean, he actually held my hand (sort of behind his back) while he was rubbing the other girl's back that he'd told me he liked. What's a girl to think? (He says now he was keeping his options open. Yeah right!)

We came home from Disneyland and a week later, on Mother's Day, Brian and I were sitting on the couch in my apartment. He looked over at me and suddenly said, "Will you marry me in August?" I was stunned. We hadn't dated, we hadn't said we loved each other, nothing. So my response was, "What?" And he repeated it, but this time he kissed me. And I said yes.

Some people were worried for us. They thought maybe we hadn't known each other long enough or that we didn't know each other well enough. But what they didn't realize was how deep a friendship we had cultivated long before our engagement. The dating part just came after the ring, that's all. And we did get married in the Jordan River Temple that August.

So here we are eighteen years later and six kids better, we've built upon that strong foundation, and I'm still married to the most romantic man on the planet. (And yes, we never miss our weekly date as a married couple since we didn't do that before marriage!) We just seem to be so in tune with each other and we make a great team. But my definition of love and romance has changed. Don't get me wrong. I still love to get love poems, flowers, and surprises, but it's different now. When I'm having a tough day and Brian comes home from work and does the dishes or starts a dinner for me, it's a romantic gesture and I know it's because he loves me. When he lets me sleep late on Saturday and makes my favorite breakfast, *sigh* I know it's because he loves me. When he worked it out with his boss to come in early so he could come home early and be with the kids while I finished my university degree, I knew it was because he loved me. It's swoon-worthy and romantic to me and it makes my heart overflow with gratitude for him. I count myself lucky to have him for an eternal companion, just because of who he is. One of the sweetest memories I have is when he got up with the screaming baby one night and pretty soon all was quiet. I got up to check on them and found them both snuggled on our couch fast asleep. It was a moment in time I will never forget, looking at two people I loved more than life itself on that couch and knowing my life would never be the same without them.

So in my case, you definitely could say Disneyland is the place where dreams really do come true. I know mine did.


At 2/15/2007 3:27 PM, Blogger lewsgal said...

Wow...what a romantic story. It sounds to me like what started off in Adventure Land has really paid off in the long run. Thanks for sharing your story with all of us. It will make me look at Brian in a whole new light...

At 2/16/2007 2:42 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wait! Two of you bloggers are married to men named Brian? Whuzzup with that?

At 2/16/2007 2:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing your story, Julie! It goes to show that real romance isn't in a box of chocolates; it's in the heart.


At 2/19/2007 5:44 PM, Anonymous danithew said...

That's a fun courtship story. I liked how he showed up to take care of you when you had pneumonia.

At 2/23/2007 6:05 PM, Anonymous Proud Daughter of Eve said...

Gorgeous, wonderful post. You really illustrate the romance in the best, deepest, truest sense. :)


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