Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Engaged: A Sister's Perspective

I will start at the very beginning. A very good place to start. (Thank you Sound of Music!)

In the summer of 2011, my sister told me of a random meeting with a handsome firefighter at Firehouse Subs no less. I think I replied something along the lines of, that was was the sub?

A few weeks later I noticed that she was mentioning Lee A LOT. I could not ignore it anymore.
So, then I think I said something like, Yeah, yeah, I don't want to get involved unless it is serious.

But, in my heart I already knew it was serious. In my heart I already was thinking this Lee guy, he was going to change everything. I was a modern day Josephine March (Thank You Little Women).

As the monthly anniversary flowers got delivered, and my parents started talking about Lee more, the Fall came around. And because she is so very wise, my sister and Lee gave me time to adjust. I finally met Lee and Mel for breakfast on a cool November morning. He was kind, charming, funny, and just so real. I liked him. I was up front about explaining why I had needed to wait to meet him in person, but I told him and Mel that I could tell this was different. The oldest sister's seal of approval was given!

More time went by. Visits home, relationship advice and laughter. I got Lee's phone number and even sent him a random text or two. I remember when we rang in the New Year of 2012. One of the more memorable times when the 3 of us just hung out. And it was then, that I knew it. I knew that Lee and Melanie were meant to be. I knew that he was somehow the perfect combination for her. And somehow she was just right for him. And in that moment I was finally able to fully relax. I let out a deep breath I had been holding for months. I guess other older siblings (esp. sisters) understand what I was feeling. I was able to trust that Lee would and could take care of my sister in the way in which she needs and deserves. And considering Mel's kidney past, I had cared for her in ways that many siblings have never had to experience. Anyway, it was a momentous time.

This man, who was growing in God, he could take care of my sister. The things that were most important to Melanie, Lee cared for those things too. It is an amazing feeling, for a slightly overprotective sister, to step back and redefine a new season in her life.

More time went by, the ups and downs of life naturally flowed. My friends saw me change into a sister who truly had gone from skeptical to supportive. I had conversations with Lee and Melanie. Their love was obvious. Their personal growth was obvious. And every single last one of my qualms was laid to rest. Lee had gone over and beyond to show love and care for my family and he had shown genuine faith and love of God. There was not anything else I needed to concern myself with (because for good or bad, I like to concern myself with a lot of things).

And the Friday before the proposal, when Lee told me of his love for Melanie, and how she was his best friend, and how he wanted to build a life with her that would be full of memories that they could share as they grew older and sat in rocking chairs on the porch......well, I had to hold back my tears. And then Sunday. After hints and surprises, Lee proposed to my Mel! It was such a FUN day:) I have literally seen this love story take shape. I have been privileged to see my sister grow into a woman who is now ready and so willing to begin a new life with her future husband. At some moments it's surreal, Could the sister who has been my closest friend, could she REALLY be getting married?! Yup, she is, and I'm so proud of my girl:) Wedding planning, Stewart style, here we come!

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