How we met, the LONG version - Part IV


Get the full story with Part I, Part II, and Part III

"...So, if you're not going to do it, I have to. I need to break up with you."

He was genuinely shocked. At that instant, the tiny revenge part of me said 'take that, sucka!', but everything else just felt a little sorry for him and a lotta sad for us. He really had no idea what he was doing, did he? So once we got out to our cars, we talked a bit more.

I was really interested in the sudden change of heart for me. I honestly thought it had a major something to do with his girl infatuation (See Part III). I thought that maybe he couldn't handle her getting married, men with their sensitive egos and all. We talked about that subject in general, and he said "No, I really am over that. I am genuinely happy for her! When they announced their engagement I finally felt free from it all. It was like she was my 'moby dick', like I couldn't ever catch her, and I think I fell in love with the notion of being in love. If we really did ever get together it probably would have been disastrous."

Okaaaay... so what then, pray tell, convinced you to run away? I knew that I would have to wrestle it out of him; he wasn't supplying much information!

We talked a bit more, and then he just broke down.

B: "Oh wow, I'm just really afraid of losing you forever, like I've lost my chance"

Okay, more confusion sets in. Why was he the one upset? Wasn't it him that initiated this ugly chapter anyway?

S: "Look Bryan, You haven't lost me. I LOVE YOU! I want to marry you! But you need to get out there, date a few girls, get whatever you need to figured out, then come back. I'll be waiting... Just please don't take too long."

And I really meant it. I had no desire to even think about dating anyone else. I remembered so strongly the impression that I had a mere five months earlier. How could I deny that? I knew it wasn't simply horomones rushing in; I had a future with this guy. But maybe he was really nervous? Maybe he wasn't at the same point I was? Whatever it was, I was willing to wait it out for him.

The next little while was a bit crazy. I was still making plans to move; I figured I would be out of his hair while he sorted things out. Plus, I just couldn't watch idly from the sidelines while he took others out on dates. It made me sick to think that there were other girls out there that were going to be on dates with MY man, holding his hand, maybe giving him a peck or two. I couldn't stand to see that in action, so the move to Las Vegas seemed logical enough. It really wasn't that far away; we could visit pretty much any given weekend.

So our relationship took a tiny step backward. We were finally communicating again, but I let off the pressure of dating or anything else that could be considered remotely romantic. It was a little tough, because our relationship was, within the bounds of the singles ward, akin to that of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie; people just wanted to be in our business. Even though we endeavored to keep people uninformed of the latest hurdle, it was pretty obvious to anyone that we weren't exclusive any more. Anywhere either of us turned, we were approached by our adoring fans and papparazzi (lol), demanding what was going on between us. I think both of us tried to be evasive, but that works for only so long.

It started to get really embarrasing when the 'other' Brian tried to get involved and "fix things". The funny thing was he really liked Bryan and me together. He had actually been one of the first people to say (in a cheesy little boy teasing a little girl way) "I know someone who likes you!" He said Bryan was the only guy that he 'approved' of, and that he was the only one that deserved me. Sweet, but kinda weird to hear that from him.

Anyway, he wanted to get the story from me directly. Uh, I don't know about you, 'other' Brian, but I feel just a little strange and thrown off when the ex boyfriend whom I was waiting for to marry asks me about another guy who I want to marry, and why we are no longer together. Doesn't that seem a bit contrived to you, 'other' Brian? I just don't really want to talk about it, if it's all the same!

I think I was a bit rude.

Regardless, things were in the works for me to move on and let Bryan do his own thing for a while; I was able to qualify for a job transfer quite easily for the same position, I was going to Vegas with Sam to look at apartments (she was then living an hour from Vegas), and everything seemed to be going pretty smoothly. Bryan seemed less afraid of me (that's the only way to describe it), and more sad to see me go.

During the Vegas trip, Sam & I covered a lot of ground. We found plenty of places (really close to the nice part of the strip) within our budget, and even considered renting a home with a few more girls. But I felt awful. Once I was there, I just knew I shouldn't move. I'm sure I could have made an okay life there for a while, but it felt like a major backslide. I felt so terrible telling this to Sam! Being the awesome friend that she is, she understood. Yeah, she was bummed (who wouldn't be bummed after missing out on living with me, lol), but she totally got it. And she said, "Well, I guess you'd better marry him, then!" Yeah, that's what I'm trying to accomplish! :)

On my way back to California, I can't wait to get home. I just felt so light and clear-headed, like I had completely made the right decision in not moving. I felt so happy about it, I just had to tell him! And Bryan was beyond ecstatic, at least I got that vibe!

A week or two later, he asks me to drop by his house so we can go over a few things with our calling. I gladly comply :) When I get there, he was going through old mission photos. I love old mission photos! He was going through the funnier ones, telling me the stories behind all the laughable situations. Man, Elders can be so crazy! He was telling me all about what it was like to work at the mission office, what his President was like, his least and most favorite companions and why, his areas and the families that he worked with, the event of being able to be at the temple when a family he baptized got sealed, all those super amazing experiences that he was part of. It made me love him so much more in an instant! We talked about his brothers and his dad, and how he wanted to be like them; strong, worthy Priesthood holders, givers of themselves, strong in their testimonies of the restored gospel, wonderful dads and patriarchs, loving husbands to their wives. And the conversation turned to 'us'.

I told him I was sad I wasn't a part of his life, and that I missed him. And the floodgates opened.

He told me he missed my smile, my laugh, my kiss, my sense of humor, my smarts, he missed ME. And then we kissed...

WOOSH! The same terrific impressions came back to me in an instant. I knew I couldn't be making this up! He was it. Everything that I was and would become would eventually be his to share with me. I just had to be patient and let him figure it out, too. But just to make sure...

"Um, so does this mean that we are back together now?" (I couldn't let anything be left unsaid!)

"Yeah, I guess it does, huh?"


I finally have him back and I don't have to worry about anyone else encroaching on my man! I am soooo ecstatic! But I know that things would have to be slightly different so he can still get the answers he is looking for. No more talk about being serious. No more wedding talk, even if it isn't about ours. No more waiting around just for him to pop the question! I am still going to be my same fun flirty (but much less so) self, but perhaps not be so 'available'. You know, the whole 'absence makes the heart grow fonder' thing!

So I traveled. Quite a bit. And always by myself. Bryan and I had already taken a road trip once together to visit our families in Utah, and that was before we broke up. So he didn't need to come with me on any of these fun girly get-togethers, he would be bored to tears anyway! I go to Vegas, I go to Phoenix, and I visit Kimmy in New York.

Oh, the FUN I had! I still was waiting for Heavenly Father to make good on our 'deal', and in the meantime I was turning a blind eye to approaching the subject with Bryan.

In his camp, it was a completely different story. Where I had gotten an answer about Bryan without even asking directly, Bryan was getting nothing. The heavens were closed for him on this matter. It was driving him crazy. And it was driving me even crazier! I was unaware that this was the holdup. Bryan hadn't yet gotten an answer to his prayers. And from what he has told me multiple times since then, it wasn't just a single prayer, or even a few. It was over days and days of mulling it over in his mind and heart. But, still no answer. I think he was waiting for an angel to come down and conk him over the head, but he got not a single peep in the process.

It had been five months since we started officially dating, five months since those rain soaked nights. And it had been four months since I knew we were going to get married. I WAS TRYING SO HARD TO BE PATIENT!!! But man, this was getting harder and harder! So to cool off a bit and get refocused, I decide to visit Kimmy in New York for a week(she was living there at the time). It really was a great vacation! It wasn't my first time there, but there is SO much to do, one could take a week long vacation once a month and still be left with really cool new things to do! We did fun touristy things, like going to the Met, Rockefeller Center, went to see a few shows on Broadway, cruised up and down Central Park, went to Serendipity's and a bunch of other famous restaurants, shopped a ton, and just had a general gluttony of girl time! I was genuinely sad to go home to real life, same old job, school, etc. But I was so happy to be able to see Bryan again!

He had arranged to pick me up at the Airport, and what a sight for sore eyes! Once again, I knew he was the man I was going to marry. Why couldn't he figure it out already? :)

The few weeks that followed my NYC vacation, Bryan was much sweeter and more attentive (like that could be possible to be more than previously), and just all around more awesome to hang out with. We didn't get to spend a whole lot of time together though, because he had a summer job installing alarm systems, which honestly took up all of his time. He would go to work at 6am, work all day in people's attics and crawl spaces, and go home totally exhausted at around 10pm. He and I would get to see each other for maybe an hour before he went home for the night. I felt so sorry for him! Yet, he still was super active in his callings and was so involved in activities.

One fast Sunday, he decided to bear his testimony. He expressed how grateful he was for me and what an example I was to him. I was so flattered, it was super sweet! Once again, I was impressed by how he publicly acknowledged me and declared his love and appreciation for me(singles ward politics, meh). Of course all the girls were jealous! :)

On this particular Sunday, there was a YSA fireside hosted in Del Mar that Bry and I decided to go to. While we were driving towards the destination, I told him that it was really nice of him to acknowledge me the was he did. Right then, he had this little grin on his face. Then he said "I love you, Sarah. Let's get married."


My only reaction was "WHAT?!"

I was completely thrown off guard; I thought for a minute he was joking! But, he wasn't. I was so excited and feeling like I was having an out-of-body experience... I forgot to accept! Once I regained my composure (in Sarah time=.25 seconds, in Bryan time=30 seconds), I said yes, obviously. His proposal was totally cute and so 'us'. I have reminded him on several occassions that he never officially 'asked' me when it counted (I always tell people that he told me we were getting married), so he has since then tried to make up for it. :)

Bryan had finally relayed what the issue was. He honestly hadn't received an answer to his prayers. He had been praying for months to know if it was me he should marry, but Heavenly Father hadn't given him a direct answer. It was only after we had spent a significant amount of time apart that he realized he never wanted to live without me. So really, breaking up with him was the best thing that could have happened to us. Three very long months later, we were sealed for time and eternity in the San Diego LDS Temple.

I love you, Bryan! Happy Anniversary! 3 years and counting to a bazillion more!

How we met, the LONG version - Part III

PART III of ???

For the complete low-down, catch up with Part I and Part II.

The next time I saw him...

That jerk face. He acted like nothing at all had happened! Okay, fine. Nothing really did happen. It was all some mishap. He tripped on the carpet in front of me, landed next to me on the fireplace bench (which subsequently forced his hands to slip off my flip flop), and took hold of my foot to balance himself, which ended up as a five minute foot rub. Yeah. Riiiight....

So it was his turn to play 'poker face', huh? Okay, then. He had just prolonged the inevitable. I actually didn't have to have that awkward "I can't go out with you because you're like my brother but I kinda do like you anyway" conversation just yet. And I was okay with that.

Nothing came of that foot rub for weeks on end. I wasn't exactly waiting with baited breath, but I was just a little confused. I knew he wasn't a player, so that theory was out. But I also realized that he was extremely picky with whom he dated (reference to Part I where I pulled out the ward list to find him a chica. He came up with an excuse for EVERYONE on that list to not date them!). On top of that, he was a little gun shy with the ladies. So I figured that I fell into one of two categories: I wasn't up to his caliber, or he was just plain scared stiff!

Good thing it was the second one. :)
Fast forward to about a month later. It was January 2005. I was really honestly over the boys and was ready for a man. It was a new year, and I knew that it would be a great one. It was the year that I cut bangs after over 10 years. It was the year I got a really great promotion at work. I was a woman on a mission: have joy in the life I was living, manless or not! And I would start my new found mission with my BFF Kimmy. At Disneyland! We spent at least three days in a row there! It really was a lot of fun, just being a girl and silly. And on the third day after we were kinda bored with D-land (who gets bored there, anyway?), in the afternoon I get a call from... BRYAN!!!
Okay, right then and there I knew I was really into him because:
a) I got the sweaty palms syndrome when I answered his phone call
b) I actually answered his call in the middle of Disneyland (I think it was Main Street, to be exact)
c) I was genuinely happy that he called me, even if I was at the happiest place on earth
d) I convinced Kimmy into going home early so we could go see a movie with him and a buddy of his. Call me crazy but who leaves DISNEYLAND to see a movie???
So, he invites us to the movies, we leave Disneyland and meet him at the theatre. Dumb movie, fun company! I will owe Kimmy a million favors for that one! She didn't even know the other dude and it was slightly awkward for her because he was acting 'cool' and non-social. More like really awkward. Or maybe it's just considered payback, since after HS graduation we went to Magic Mountain and a friend of her friend was my riding buddy, it was for the entire day and he was even WORSE! Well I digress again... :)
Since we all had separate cars (my car was parked at Kimmy's parents house, we had her mom's van at the theatre, and Bryan had his own car), Kimmy 'suggested' that she turn in for the night, I go out for ice cream with Bryan, and he would take me to my car at her house afterwards. Um, thanks again Kimmy! :) We did just that, sans ice cream. He took me straight to my car, yet we spent about two hours together (in front of Kimmy's parents house, nonetheless!), having a wonderful conversation about I don't even remember what. He has always influenced me to feel so comfortable around him, we could have been talking about unusual body ailments and it would have been fine! The other reason why we were in the car for so long was because it was a wet year, and it was raining like cats and dogs outside. Every time we would try to wrap it up and I would make to open the door to leave, this monstrous hail storm would brew out of nothing! So for my own safety, I stayed for a spell.
And no, no awkward "I can't date you" conversation yet. Truth be told -as if you haven't already guessed- I didn't want to have that conversation. But I still wasn't sure if it was worth the future possible hurt down the road to not have it. To make matters slightly crazier, I had recently learned of a years long crush/infatuation with another girl in our ward, that he still wasn't quite over. But I had never been one to back down from a challenge, maybe I could break him of that? I was still trying to sort out everything, but all the while I was being won over by Bryan just being himself.
Maybe a week later, he asked me out again. We went on a double date to Filippi's pizza. It was pretty fun! I don't remember why, but the same car situation happened again... Oh! I remember, because we all wanted to carpool to the restaraunt, and my car was the only four door/non-truck out of the bunch. So we met probably at a church parking lot, and took it from there. Anyway, I was in the driver's seat this time, and it was once again, raining. Thank goodness for the rain! I'm pretty sure it was at this time that I tried to have "the talk". I'm sure it was totally screwed up!
It seemed like to me that he was just going to break down my defenses until I cried 'uncle' and agreed to marry him. But I wanted a definition! (Define this, Bryan it! Tell me what you think we are! lol) So I approached that elephant in the room first. The conversation went something like this:
"um, so you kinda figured out that I like you?"
(At this point, his hand was resting next to mine, almost touching.)
"yeah. Are you okay with that?"
"Well, here's the thing... Nate and Lisa... if we ever broke up... I would be forced to see you all the time, and I don't want to screw up what we have now. Does that make sense? I'm just a little scared because of my recent track record."
"what? That's it?"
"well, yeah, I can't MAKE you date me. But I was thinking about taking it one day at a time and see where this goes..."
"oh. um. How are you going to guarantee that this won't get weird? or that you won't be weird after we break up?"
"you're going on the assumption that we're going to eventually break up. why don't we just let this take it's course and see what happens?"
(I just have to interject right now and point out that this conversation is completely indicative of our personalities! I always need some sort of collateral; he can shoot from the hip and not feel out of control)
"well... see, that's the thing. I am still a little fragile. And I'm not sure if I can take another twenty dagger stabs at my heart (called breaking up) any time in the near future"
(he casually takes my hand at this point... pretty good move for a rookie)
"Sarah Virginia McBride, I like you and I want to see where this ride takes us. If you are willing to trust me, then I promise that I will try as hard as I can to not get weird if we ever break up."
He didn't exactly have me at 'hello', but that was good enough for me. We had made it official. That was a good night, even if it was raining kitchen sinks. :)
Dating Bryan was always really fun. I could never get enough of his company! And much to my surprise, everyone totally approved of our match up. Even the bishopric mentioned that they couldn't have set up a better match! And Bryan was so cute about it, too. When Jeff Porter (an old family friend of the Harrisons, and also one of Bishop Uda's counselors) said to Bryan "So you guys are an item, huh? (wink, wink, nudge, nudge)", he shot back "No, we are dating. Sarah is not an item that can be bought and sold.". I will always remember how he said that, it was so sweet!
Only a few weeks after we started dating, I felt that we were fairly serious. This didn't scare me off necessarily, but I did wonder if he was on the same plaine? Once again, another elephant in the room.
During our first kiss, I had this really special, amazing impression that I would never kiss anyone else like that again; all my kisses would go to Bryan forever more and that we were going to be married. And I felt that it would be very soon.
However amongst all this bliss, I did have a major concern. I knew that Bryan didn't have much experience with girls, and he had had this infatuation with a certain girl he had known for years. I didn't think he was completely over it. And I was unsure on how to broach that subject (even more delicate than the family issue), but it was something that HAD to be talked about! I attempted a few times, but it just came out wrong. And he did tell me that he wanted to be over her, but it was like his old crush just wouldn't let go, as if his love was for the idea of her and not the actual person.
(You know who you are and I seriously don't hold grudges or have any negative feelings toward you. I'm adding in this personal part for the sake of the story. Though it did happen this way, I have never felt bitterness or anger towards you at all, so don't worry we can still be friends, LOL!)
Regardless of this, our dating is progressing pretty well, I am secretly planning our wedding, and we are both happy.
And then, about four months after our relationship defining rain drenched night, Bryan tells me he needs a little time to sort things out...
uh oh. I know what that means...
It means that he is out of his MIND!!! It must be that other girl issue. Doesn't he get that she is SO not into him and never was, ever??? And that she's engaged and will be married in, oh, a MONTH! Doesn't he know that I trusted him? Didn't I tell him this would happen? But no, no one ever listens to the experienced dater! Okay Sarah, breathe. It's not the end of the world... yet. Maybe he really means he needs space? He couldn't have used that transparent of an excuse just to get rid of me? And just how would he get rid of me? I am his freaking council co-leader! (we were putting people in 'councils' in the singles ward. If you need an explanation, just post on my comments and I'll tell you all about it) Our lives are entertwined too much at this point to simply make a clean break!

But this shouldn't be the end of the world, I can get through this... I guess I'll just have to have another amazing, totally mind clearing, direct impression about my future companion while I am kissing a different guy. It's possible, right?

After weeks of giving him his space (such a stupid nebulous phrase!), and talking it through with a good friend of his, I had decided I had given him ENOUGH if his crappy SPACE! He wasn't going to avoid the wrath of Sarah any longer! :) I mean, really. Avoidance is not only cowardly, it's downright rude. And if I wanted to 'magnify' my calling, it was necessary to get his input and ok on a lot of stuff I had put together. Stupid Bryan. Stupid love. Stupid awesome impression. Grrr!
So I called him. (in reality I think I gave him like three days. I am so impatient!) I told him I wanted to take him out... No, not mafia style! I would meet him at Filippi's Pizza (creating a pattern here) to have a talk about some things.
When he got there, we actually sat at the same double date table. Wow, these memories were still so fresh, it hurt! Oh wow, I really love him, so what am I doing? --Breathe and work through it Sarah, you gotta do this.
So, this is how it went (thoughts are in italics):
B: "hello"
S: "hi"
(we ordered our food)
S: "so, how have you been?"
B: "all right"
S: "oh...good" (of course you've been all right. No emotional baggage for you. I suppose I'm the only person on the planet who can't compartmentalize my life's experiences into little boxes. I loathe you... And I love you!)
(big pause)
B: "how about you?"
S: "um, not so good"
B: "oh...oh."
(another big pause)
B: "So, how are the lists [for our councils] coming?"
(I stare at him: "you're an idiot for breaking my heart and if I didn't love you so much I would really hate you right now. Do you honestly think I asked you here to talk about church stuff?")
S: "They are done, it wasn't too hard"
B: "oh, well that's good. Sorry I didn't help you out with it. I've had a lot on my mind"
(my ears perk up for further information but he doesn't offer anything else on the subject)
S: "that's fine, it was a one person job anyway"
(we proceed into small talk, our food comes, we eat for a while, I get my nerve up, the air is still heavy with discomfort. 15 minutes or so passes)
S: "So, I have a question for you..."
(The look on his face is pained and haggard. He knows what's coming and looks tired and apologetic at the same time)
B: "I might have an answer"
(I'm hesitant to even ask, and I come so close to taking the conversation to a different path, but I HAVE to know this and I have to ask)
S: "How would you feel if I moved?"
(He looks surprised and curious and sad)
B: "to where?"
S: "Las Vegas. I would rent an apartment with Sam"
I am waiting for an answer for seriously a full minute.
B: "I would miss you"
At this point, I am totally ruffled. How dare he! There is no way he would miss me, I just wouldn't allow it! :) I let him have it!
S: "No, you wouldn't! How could you even miss me, you haven't called for weeks! You don't look at me at all during council meetings! How am I supposed to have a calling with you if you don't communicate with me? (I know, it was a low blow, but I had to at least cater to the Priesthood side of him) How am I supposed to move on if you don't let me?"
B: "I was just asking for some time! You don't know..."
S: Bryan. {sigh} I have been here before. I don't like being here. This is the weird limbo where I can't date others because I don't know if you'll freak out or not, and I can't date you because, well I don't know why, you just don't want me. So, if you're not going to do it, I have to. I need to break up with you." ...



How we met, the LONG version - Part II

PART II of ???

To get the full version, read Part I first!

...So after my Air Force dude phase was officially over and done with, I moved on to...

An old Zone Leader. (I'll call him, Zone Leader DJ) Let me explain! He was my ZL for only a few weeks. The only real memories I have of him as a missionary were:

(1. After my first Zone Conference, he introduced himself and said he was from Lakeside, and I remember randomly thinking "I almost bought a car from a girl from Lakeside!"

(2. During a house inspection, he opened up the fridge and was impressed that we actually had fruits and vegetables in there rather than junk food and rancid meat (he didn't usually work with sisters).

(3. At a random District meeting he expressed to a few missionaries he thought it to be rude to speak English when very few people understood the language, and I was so excited that he said that because I had ALWAYS thought the same thing.

(4. Seeing him at the mission office about a week before he was to go home, and asking if he could take a box of mine home with him to give to my parents so I could save $$$ on postage. He agreed, but flaked and ended up not taking it. But I digress...

{Previous to the random phone call} When I got home from Brasil in late 2003, I looked ZL DJ up because he was a familiar face and judging on his personality he seemed pretty cool to hang out with. We never officially dated at the time, for a lot of reasons. He knew that I was still waiting for the 'other' Brian, as well that I was still 'fresh off the boat' so to speak, and, simply, I was not interested in him then. Little did I know that he was "interested" in me.
{fast forward to almost a year later} ZL DJ was well aware of my AF dude dating experience, and that we had ended abruptly. Upon discovering that AF guy was out of the picture (they attended the same Institute classes at SDSU after all), ZL DJ called (this was the random phone call) to tell me he was taking me to see Les Miserables that weekend -A nice distraction from my mono induced death bed.

That. Was. AWESOME!!!

It didn't matter that I was sick (no longer contagious, just feeling pretty crappy), I totally felt like a princess that night! He was super SUPER romantic and totally what I needed to bounce back. I mean like completely tailored to my tastes romantic. Everything. From Les Mis, to the well thought out surprises, to the fun/slightly scary & dangerous adventures, to the song written for me, to the video made for me, to the surprise picking me up at the airport ro-MAN-tic! Edward Cullen didn't have a thing on this guys gift for making me feel like I was the only woman alive and his one job was to shower me with happiness. (yay Twilight!) :)
All the while as I was completely star struck, Bryan was 'plotting' to ask me out! The poor guy, he had NO idea that I was head over heels for Zone Leader DJ. Our getting together happened so fast, I was convinced that ZL DJ was 'the one'.

So, after telling Bryan that I started dating Zone Leader DJ (Bryan was my best guy friend, after all), he just looked at me and said something like, "Sarah, you need to slow down. I'm the slow down police, and you're under arrest". I'm sure I totally botched what he really said, but it was pretty clever. I was actually shocked! That was the first time a light went on in my head that screamed HELLO! He likes you! I know, finally, right? :)

(Are you still following? It can get a bit confusing, even for me, and I lived it! There were quite a few people involved in a very short amount of time, and they came in and out of my life a few times. I know that makes me sound like a brazen hussy, but it is what it is, you know?)

Well, Bryan didn't have to wait for very much longer. After two weeks of super romantic all-my-fairy-tale-dreams-come-true dating bliss, Zone Leader DJ, for no known reason, dumped me. Needless to say, my heart utterly fell out of my chest; I was heartbroken! (Twilight fans, you know in Eclipse, where Edward leaves Bella? It was close to that feeling for me, but most definitely not reciprocated by him) On top of the empty time-passing feeling, I was also really mad. I was angry that he would even waste my time like that! So I prayed to Heavenly Father on one occasion and I said something like:

"Heavenly Father, I know you don't make deals, but I also know that you want me to be happy. I was so very happy with Zone Leader DJ, and I really felt that we would have made an amazing eternal companionship. And lots of beautiful babies! I was under the assumption that he was the reason why I felt impressed that I should no longer wait for the 'other' Brian, nor keep dating Air Force dude. And to top everything else off, Zone Leader DJ and I were simply a perfect match! We had many things in common as well as strengths and weaknesses that balanced each other out. So, what's the deal! Now I am sad and CRUSHED! And I no longer want to feel this way. So, Heavenly Father, if Zone Leader DJ is not the one for me, then top him. Find me someone better. Even if You don't then You know that I will always follow You and Your plan for me. But if You helped me find someone better, I would be so very grateful. Thank you!"

I'm sure once Bryan found out that Zone Leader DJ and I were no longer joined at the hip, he was elated! But he has never been one to jump the gun; he did a very wise thing and waited until I had all the crazy silly boys out of my system!
Months went by...
I was still single...
I was still sorta looking...
But, hey! I realized that I kinda LIKED being single! The 'other' Brian was still every now and again trying to get back together, but I already figured that was a wasted effort. AF dude would call every few weeks or so, but I was SO over that one! Why go backwards, right? I was having way too much fun living life and being unattached!
So, several months after ZL DJ, Bryan had invited me to a going away party thing at some person's house (I don't even remember where) for a mutual friend. It was a no pressure invite, more like "hey, a bunch of people are going, are you gonna go, too?" thing. Not a date at all. I even showed up by myself. Though he did come out to show me to the door (always the gentleman).
It was a fun little get together; I mingled quite a bit and flirted probably even more (I was getting quite good at that!). And then Bryan comes to sit down beside me, grabs my foot, and starts giving me a foot massage. I couldn't believe it! Right in front of a bunch of people! If that wasn't a declaration, I didn't know what was. So it kinda alarmed me a bit, even though I was trying to play it cool. All you ladies know what I'm talking about... at that moment, you are scrutinizing every minuscule detail, body angle, head tilt, voice inflection, sentence structure, and pupil dilatation. But you are keeping your relaxed poker face while you do it. That's where I was! Inside my head I was saying:
"Oh, crap! Friends don't give friends foot rubs! This is weird, but nice. But waaay beyond the friend category. I don't even let my friends come close to my feet! So, really, how much does Bryan like me? Does this mean that he just wants to date and ditch, or he wants forever, or something in between, or, or... gaaaahhh! Oh jeez, if we ever get together and things go south, I will have to see him for the rest of my life, at every single McBride/Harrison function... why oh why are Nate and Lisa MARRIED??? This is pretty complicated. And I may be too outspoken for his mom to like me! Man, but I think I sort of like him. But... do I like him enough to take this gamble? Wow, I really like this foot rub. And for him to be touching my stinky dirty feet is quite chivalrous. But oh.my.GOSH! I have to decide whether or not I should give him a chance. And I should probably let him know one way or the other, right? That's only fair. Yeah, once he's done with the foot rub, I should tell him it's too unconventional to even be thinking about dating. It would be like kissing my brother...ew. And the family lines would be all jacked up. I'm sure he'd understand my logic, right? So no, I'm not interested. I'll just tell him that. He doesn't have to know that I AM mildly interested, just maybe not enough to ruin a great thing..."
So, my plan was to take him aside and tell him that he was very sweet and I did like him a lot, but I didn't think it wise to venture into the dating world, based on family relation. Besides, what would people THINK? And right as I was about to do that...
He was gone.
Yeah, that fool left the party! I really think it was his diabolical plan to keep me wound up and uber-interested. Oh, the cat-and-mouse games we play!
The next time I saw him...

Decision 2008

3 years...

Thank you everyone for posting their suggestions. I've made up my mind about our Anniversary! We are still going to Coronado, and before that we will eat at an undisclosed location (for fear of Bryan peeking at this blog. I know, what a way to keep a secret; post it on the world wide web. I crack myself up!). I will spill the beans after our September 2 date night. I hope he likes the evening! :)


How we met, the LONG version - Part I

I'm sure all of you are excitedly clapping your hands at the prospect of this post. The short story is that he saw me from afar, and had to have me. So we got married and that's that. But this is not the short story!

I suppose it all began (before it really began) when my brother Nathan started dating a lovely young woman named Lisa, way back in late 2000. She had just returned from her mission in Texas, and they were a perfect match for one another. Shortly afterwards, Nate McBride and Lisa Harrison (note that last name) got married. Yeah, Lisa is Bryan's older sister! Fate would have it that he had just left for his own mission (Santiago Chile) a few months before their marriage, so I had not met him yet. I know that the timing was so perfect, though. I was dating another person then (whom I will refer to as the 'other' Brian), and I was very involved, so even meeting another person at that time in my life wouldn't have phased me one bit.
I sent off the 'other' Brian on a mission (Malaga, Spain) the same time that I myself served a mission (Brasil, Porto Alegre Sul. O maior missao na planeta!). After I returned, I was really busy with church callings, work, and waiting for the 'other' Brian to get home in six months, so we would have our happily ever after. My life was so wrapped up in this cute little package! :)
Anyway, Bryan at this time was working for my brother Nate in his dental lab. And his dental lab happened to be inside my dad's dental office. So, since I had nothing better to do (hey, I was still a crazy pseudo-nerd who just got home from a foreign country!), I would go there to hang out sometimes (in my own defense, I was simply still adjusting). One day, Bryan and I crossed paths in the back of the office, and I said, "Hi! Aren't you Bryan?" I'm sure I really shocked him! I was still so extroverted, it was truly scary. So he and I made each other's acquaintance, and he asked me if I was hungry, and if I wanted to go to Taco Bell. I laugh so hard thinking about that! It had been a long time since I was even allowed to be in close proximity to a male, and heaven forbid without a COMPANION! So it was a little awkward. But I remember him being so nice about me being strange. He totally understood all about it.
Then about a week (or so) later, I saw him in a correlation meeting at our singles ward. I remember him having such an air of authority, but not in a staunchy overbearing way. It was like he knew what was going on all the time, and he was totally on top of things. He and I actually had a few callings that required working together, so we ultimately became fast friends. But 'friends' was about it for me. I was so CLUELESS!! I mean, really bad. He even told me one day "Sarah, you need to find me a girlfriend". So what did I do? I pulled out a ward list and went down the entire thing! But I skipped my name because I was waiting for the 'other' Brian. Seriously, I completely missed the boat on that one! I had to go back to flirting 1.0, I was honestly so hopeless! But thankfully, Heavenly Father knew what He was doing. At around the same time, Bryan was called to be Elder's Quorom President, and I was called to be the Relief Society President. It being a Single's ward, we spent countles hours together, planning events and getting less-active members excited about the gospel again, visiting/home teaching friendly competitions, FHE reminders, and everything else imaginable. That being said, we spent quite a bit of time together in a non-romantic way. That was really neat, because I got to see him in life situations without being "blinded by love". And he was really cool.
Meanwhile in my dating life, I was dutifully waiting for the 'other' Brian, while guys kept knocking on my door. I would tell them thanks, but not interested. Until one person actually DID interest me. So because of that guy, I ended my FOUR YEAR relationship with the 'other' Brian, and started dating - let's call him - the Air Force dude. Hmmm... how should I explain that phase of my life? I was lonely for companionship, I guess you could say. I knew that ultimately, much to his and my own dismay, I would not end up with the 'other' Brian. The mission had changed us both too dramatically to start again where we had left off. I wasn't even looking, and AF dude (whom I had known for several years, and had actually casually dated previously) pops into my view. And that was that.
Anyway, after re-establishing what I was really looking for in a potential mate, all of AF dude's greatest qualities were NOT what I was truly interested in. It took a car accident, many sleepless prayer-filled nights, and a stint with nasty mono to realize this. The relationship did not end well (both with the 'other' Brian, and with the Air Force dude. I'm grateful for simple miracles). So, what did I do? Tell Bryan all about it, of course! He already knew all about the 'other' Brian, so what did I have to lose? Not only that, but my thinking was that he could be my inside guy, telling me what stuff meant from 'enemy lines'. I'm sure that must have been really hard for him, but like I said, I was one clueless airhead. :) He never let on that he was even interested in me. He was just biding his time until I got all the crazies out of my system.
So after Air Force dude was officially over and done with, I got a random call from...


I need an answer, please :)

Hey my bloggie buddies... :) I need to know of a moderately priced romantic-ish restaurant in the La Jolla/Mission Bay/Downtown area. Bryan and my anniversary is coming up next week, and he (of course, the sneaky little thing) said that I get 'to choose' what we do. So I've decided on dinner (at said moderately priced romantic-ish restaurant), and a gondola ride through the Coronado Cays. I know, awesome! I'm so excited! But I need a place to eat! Post your suggestions before September, and I'll let you all know where we go. Thanks to all who participates! :)


i {HEART} craigslist

I have always been a woman who can't pass up a great deal. Yet I don't like junk, so I am very selective when I buy a big ticket item. So was I EVER excited to find my latest treasure:

Check out my new (to me) AWESOME stroller! So infinitesimally superior than my previous piece of cow intestine excuse for a stroller! Graco should go out of business for attempting to design a double stroller. I am so happy that we have this one now! (Mine is a different color; it's khaki olive. I don't have a picture of 'the' one yet, but I just wanted to tell everyone about my steal!)

AND THE BEST PART??? 30 bucks. So sweet! I just had to spot clean and fill up the air tires, and I was off! Best 30 dollars ever spent. Pat on the back for Sarah :)


Here we go...

Ya gotta admidt, the boy's got talent...

So, any suggestions? Anyone who knows him knows that crib tents are out; any child that can take out outlet protectors (and plug in appropriate electrical devices nonetheless), unlock door locks(not rip off or destroy. unlock. dead serious), and open refrigerators can so easily pop off a measily little crib tent. It is SO beneath him... :)

Nikki, isn't he just the spitting image of Jake at this age, as far as outwitting child safety devices? Hmmmm, must be the family curse :)

P.S. As I was posting this he wanted to see the video, so after I played it for him, he just laughed and said "I got out!" wow. I will not be cashing in any babysitting offers any time soon.

How to journal a blog

I may be the last person on earth to discover this, but I think it's so cool! This website allows you to make a book out of your blog. I'm sure that there are many other website options, but this was the first that I cam e across, and it seemed the most blog-friendly. I will be taking advantage of their services in the future!


The latest

Update on Bryan's car accident! Because of the DUI hit and run situation, Bryan is considered a crime victim, which roughly translates to chiropractic care being paid for by the California Victim fund. What a sigh of relief! Not only that, but my brother's insurance will also pay up to a certain amount for medical bills, even though he's not on the policy. Another big sigh! And we can pursue a small claims court case to be reimbursed for lost wages, damaged equipment, and pain and suffering, which the other guy would pay out of pocket. I'm still not sure if it's even worth it or not to do that, because he's an illegal alien. Wouldn't he just skip town? And would we ever see that money anyway? I've heard that after a hearing, people rarely see the money owed to them anyway. Any suggestions/advice?

Bryan has been to a specialist, and the Doc said he has long term back issues, more than likely from sports, bad posture, etc. He did neurological tests to test for nerve damage, and he failed about half of them! His neck is almost completely straight (the bones should curve forward) from looking down constantly (thank you carpet buffer, computer usage, and video games), and all his injuries were severely exacerbated by the car accident. His back has pretty much been compensating for the broken down areas, so that's why his lower back and pelvis is tweaked.

Anyway, Bryan gave me permission to post his back x-ray. I'm pretty sure he's going to be in chronic pain for a while!

Notice the 'S' curve of his back, from his pelvis up.

(A little side story- While serving a mission, I always had really sick or injured companions, or I myself had injuries. I always wondered why I had been given such a huge spiritual experience in which I KNEW I should serve a mission, only to be holed up in an apartment for over half the time I was in Brasil. I have come to realize that those experiences have really taught me how to be patient and understanding during down time, not to mention all the EMPATHY I feel. Yes, empathy. It really sucks to have chronic pain, and now I know exactly how it feels! In that way, I can tend to Bryan better, knowing how he is feeling right now.)

His chiropractor is so amazing, and Bryan is slowly healing. He is frustrated with the slow process, but just like anything else, it takes time to heal.

So that's the latest. Heavenly Father really does take care of us. I'm sure we had to go through all this crazy stuff for something really good to happen. Because of the car accident, Bryan started getting more serious with his graphic design. So he's working part time, on photos for a catalog. I would post some of them, but I'm sure it would slightly infringe on copyright laws! :) And also because of the accident, Bryan never would have gone to see a chiropractor, and still would have had a messed up back and never known what was wrong with him. So I am counting my blessings. I am grateful that Bryan is still up and running, even though he has a laundry list of problems right now!


Take a look at this!

This took him about half an hour, but I'm still the proud momma!

Time for potty training???

Funny story. Well, funny depending on your outlook!

Lincoln lately has been more interested in the potty, in his anatomy (that's always a fun one), and in the bathroom process as a whole. I, on the other hand, am not particurlarly ready for the potty training process quite yet. I want him to be REALLY good and ready before I start that adventure!
About a week or so ago, he started taking off his diaper. It all started out by him taking it off in the mornings after waking up, and me finding his sheets, blankets, pjs (which he also wormed out of), and sometimes(usually) the floor soaked and reeking of pee. Honestly, when did motherhood become an OSHA hazard?

Anyway, just like any bad habit, it escalated (can you tell I watch C.S.I.?), from diaper takeoff in the mornings, to diaper takeoff at nap time, sometimes during the day, and at night right before he fell asleep. That's a full night of pee. Everywhere. Gross! I seriously have ENOUGH messes to clean up without this doozie!

(Brooke, do you recognize the PJs? LOL)
I have resorted to taping his diaper on. He is not too pleased with this turn of events. But I am more than enthralled! :) This solves both problems (the night and morning diaper shedding), and now he has stopped taking it off during nap time, even though I don't tape it during the day. Success!

So, this has been going on now for about two weeks, and tonight he peed in the potty! It was a totally random event, but I was so excited for him and he got a ton of praise and even an m&m, which is a HUGE treat for him (we don't really have a whole lot of candy hanging around; I'm one of those crazy people that actually never have an interest in buying it on a regular basis). After this, he of course wanted more candy, and kept on asking for 'more candy'. I told him the next time he went pee pee in the potty he could have one. A few minutes passed, and he came back to see me. He kept on saying something, and I couldn't tell if it was 'baby' or 'diaper'. Actually, it was both. HE TOOK OFF ORION'S DIAPER!!! Maybe he thought that if he could get Orion on the potty, he would get another m&m??? I thought it was totally hilarious, but kind of a bummer since Orion was a little poopy! Good thing I know a good carpet cleaner. :)
So now, I suppose I have to tape Orion's diaper too. Oh, the joys of pseudo potty training.