[Penelope] We met in Conner Hall, the Honors hall at West Texas A&M University. The first semester we knew each other was an interesting one. According to various sources, his close friends found out that a female math major was moving into the dorm, and she had worked on computers in the past. (For those of you who do not know, David graduated from WT with a degree in computer science) They came running to him as soon as the semester began telling him that they had found a girlfriend for him. Unbeknownst to me, those same friends, Tony and Bobby, continued to encourage him from that point on. I had a few people point out the fact that David and I were really compatible, but I figured that he would not ever fall for someone like me. Luckily, I was wrong!
[David] The following summer Penelope and I had several opportunities to hang out together. We went to Williamsburg, Virginia, to fulfill the requirements for an Honors seminar that we both signed up to take during the first summer semester. We talked and hung out and just learned more about each other.
When we got back to Canyon and finished the class, Tony, Anson, Penelope, Megan, and I started to hang out together fairly regularly. Tony would invite us over to watch a movie and we’d all laugh and talk together. We loved every minute of it! Later during the summer Tony moved out of Cross Hall, leaving Anson the lone Cross Hall resident for the rest of summer. Even though Tony had moved out, Anson, Megan, Penelope, and I would IM each other during the work day (I didn’t have a job at that point) and regularly plan times after 5:00 to all get together and do activities together. We’d watch movies, play tennis, go on walks, paint houses (actually, we only did that once… actually, we only painted the trim on Penelope’s parents’ house, once), play frisbee, and just enjoy each other’s company. It was a blast!
The whole summer was awesome. It was a wonderful time because we got to hang out together in the presence of our friends and become best friends in the process. We learned to appreciate one other and really enjoyed spending time together.
[Penelope] At the end of the summer on August 29, 2005, David took me to a coffee shop in Canyon called the Hardback Cafe to ask me out!! I was so excited! (He was a bit nervous, though.) I readily agreed, and our first date was to the Delhi Palace, an Indian restaurant in Amarillo that has since shut down. From the moment we began dating, I had a feeling that this relationship would last a looong time. It only took a couple of months before I knew he was the man I wanted to marry. That semester, we took two math classes together and got to spend a lot of study time together that we enjoyed. We learned a lot more about each other, including our differing study habits. (He does NOT want help until he has completely given up…)
Fast forward seven months…
[David] Over the course of our dating relationship, I knew I wanted to marry Penelope. We had talked about getting married, and we were both for it! A few days before March 23, 2006, I began trying to figure out how to go about asking her to marry me. I visited her dad and asked if it was alright to marry her, and he said yes. He said, “So, when are you gonna ask her?” and he encouraged me to ask her that night. I said that I hadn’t decided when I’d ask, but as I was driving back to Canyon, I got so excited that I wanted to ask her that night. When I got back to Conner Hall, I wrote a card for her with my proposal on it. My best friend, Anson, was excited for us and wanted to be one of the first to know Penelope’s reply. I took the card to her room that night and asked her to marry me. To my relief, she said yes!
[Penelope] The engagement process did not seem to last nearly as long as I thought it would, and we were married on December 16, 2006. We had an absolutely beautiful wedding surrounded by our friends and family, and then we hurried off to Cancun for our honeymoon. We spent a wonderful six days there, and it was the first time for me to see the ocean. We visited a national wildlife reserve called Xcaret. We farmed the ocean floor for seashells and sand dollars, and found quite a few of them. To my disappointment, we finally found the BEST place to look for them in the last fifteen minutes of our being in the ocean before we left! We only found one sand dollar, but we accidentally broke it before we even left Cancun. Also before we left, we left a mountain of rice on our hotel room floor. (When our friends vandalized decorated our car with rice, as part of the process they stuffed our suitcases with as much of it as possible.) I’m sure the maids loooooooooved us.
The last year and a half have been the happiest of our lives. We have the most wonderful families we could have asked for, and our friends are incredible. We are about to embark on a new journey to graduate school in Lubbock, Texas. Moving away from everyone will be sad, but we are looking forward to whatever God has in store for us. We are VERY excited about graduate school.
Fast forward to November 15, 2009…
We have now been in graduate school for over a year. The last year has been interesting. David’s friend, Christian, had it right: you go through the highest highs and the lowest lows while in graduate school. You work your hind-end off on various projects and classes – the times you succeed are the best you ever feel, but the times that you don’t are those when you have never felt as dumb. It’s rough. It has strengthened our marriage, though, and we are relying on God to take us where He wants us. We are quickly coming up on our third anniversary, which is incredible! I love him so much. I am so grateful for the time God has given us together so far and the incredible events I know will happen in the future.
We’re attempting to be patient.