So, I've been wanting to get this down on paper for a long time. It's much more entertaining to have Tricia and I both tell (as in verbally) it together (just ask our friends who have heard it), but this will have to do for now...maybe, at some point I'll get Tricia to give her side of the story.
This part of the story brings about lots of debate when it's discussed amongst my family. My dad swears he told me about Tricia before I even met her, but I'm not so sure about that part. Tricia swears that I get the date wrong. This is how I recall it.
I can remember it like it just happened 10 minutes ago... I was interning as "worship leader" at my home church in Nags Head, NC during the summer of 2000. It was Sunday, August 6, about two weeks before I was set to head out for my second year of college. I was standing on stage getting ready to begin the service when I looked out over the people gathering for worship and saw her. I didn't have much time to stare, which probably wouldn't have been appropriate at that moment anyway, but I made a mental note to remember to find her at the end of the service.
As usual, I stood outside the church door as everyone was leaving, hanging out with friends, saying hello to familiar faces, and meeting new people. Her family was one of the last to make their way out...my stomach and heart are reminding me right now of the feeling I had when I shook her hand and looked into her eyes and introduced myself. She told me her name was Tricia Kirschner.
I asked her where she was from, and she told me her family had just moved into the area. I mentioned the college are group that met on Sunday nights at the church and invited her and her brother, Joe to come and join us that night. She said maybe.
I remember watching her as she walked away, following her family toward their car...I told myself that she was the girl I was going to marry.