Click to read A Modern Fairy Tale, Part 1
Click to read A Modern Fairy Tale, Part 2
Click to read A Modern Fairy Tale, Part 3
Click to read A Modern Fairy Tale, Part 4
Click to read A Modern Fairy Tale, Part 5
Click to read A Modern Fairy Tale, Part 6
So, after nearly 23 years, Jeff and Jen and Amy and Steve met again...in the Cracker Barrel parking lot in Springfield, Ohio. And they had lots of time to chat, since Brooke and Adam were in their own little world! And they spent the next few days doing the "college thing", which included shopping and packing and learning the campus and seeing old friends and Jen and Amy cried....A LOT.
Then, just three days later, they returned to their respective homes without their eldest children and home seemed awfully empty. But in Ohio, Adam and Brooke hardly thought of home; they were falling deeper in love. They only became closer and their love grew, and their parents' suspicions that this might be "it" turned into the knowledge that their children would be spending their lives together.
The first year of college went quickly. Before they knew it, they were heading back to Ohio to collect their college sophomores and start a new adventure. Adam spent the summer in Maryland working and making lots of new friends. Brooke found a job that she loved and decided that Cedarville might not be the place for her. They made some heart-rending decisions, and their parents helped them navigate the oft-treacherous waters of beginning adulthood and young love.
In the end, Adam headed back to Cedarville, and Brooke headed to Indianapolis to live with Adam's family and be closer to him while she pursued a different type of schooling more suited to her desires and personality. The changes came fast and furiously with many conversations and much research and concentrated prayer.
And, finally, their parents knew the inevitable could be avoided no longer: Brooke and Adam wanted to get married. They didn't want to wait. They were in love, and they wanted to start their lives together.
And while Jeff and Jen and Steve and Amy were overjoyed and grateful, they also realized that the beginning for Brooke and Adam was, in a sense, an end for them. Where had the years gone?
So the parents and their children shared some serious and heartfelt conversations. The parents laid down a few "ground rules"; a few things that needed to happen before anything "official" took place. For posterity's sake it should be noted that those things were that Brooke and Adam had to save (a new) $1000 together that was only for emergencies and not to be touched; they had to take Dave Ramsey's "Financial Peace" class, and they had to work out various budgets based on various potential incomes once they were married. The parents were interested to see how serious Brooke and Adam really were; but they needn't have worried. Within two months, all three goals had been accomplished and even surpassed.
Then, one cold October afternoon, Jeff drove westward and Adam drove eastward, and they met at a hotel in western Pennsylvania for a very serious conversation. Adam wore his "Sunday best" and looked very handsome for such a big event. Jeff was more casual and tried to put Adam at ease. They spent hours talking and planning and praying together and when they left, Jeff knew Brooke would be "Mrs. Adam Terpstra", and Adam knew he would soon be buying a ring.
Just two weeks later, on a beautiful Saturday afternoon in Brown County, Indiana, Adam knelt down and asked Brooke to be his bride. She cried and laughed and, of course, she said "Yes!". Then they took a ride in a carriage embellished with a banner that declared "Just Engaged". They enjoyed the cheering and congratulations from onlookers and reveled in their newfound happiness. That evening they celebrated at the Melting Pot and called friends and family all over the country to share their news.
And the planning began in earnest. Over Thanksgiving, in a sweet bridal shop in Indianapolis, Brooke found the exact wedding dress she had been hoping for. The shop was just across the parking lot from a mall where Jen and her friend, Kim, had spent hours pushing their young daughters in strollers and dreaming about their futures while Adam played and grew just miles away. God's plan, much prayed-for and greatly anticipated by two sets of loving parents, was more perfect than they could have ever imagined. And they continued to marvel at how perfectly He had orchestrated the future of Adam and Brooke Terpstra.
And, all the while, Jeff and Jen and Amy and Steve continued to pray for God's blessings on their children-that He would grant them true happiness and that, like all good fairy tale participants, they would live "Happily Ever After".