Deanna’s story on how they met:
Ben and I met at the Wesley Foundation at Eastern Kentucky University. It’s the Methodist campus building on EKU’s campus. There are several campus ministries that meet at that building on different nights. Ben was president of the Wesley Foundation and I was the president of Chi Alpha Campus Ministries. We had several mutual friends and one of them asked Ben to play guitar for Chi Alpha’s worship team since our guitar player would be leaving soon. I was going to be joining the band as well as their new piano player. After a girls bible study one night the girls decided to talk about guys that they liked. They caught me off guard and I told them that I liked Ben. Our worship leader, Magen, thought that was soo cute and so we had a “worship practice” with just her, Ben, and me. We didn’t really practice much, but mostly talked. Magen fell asleep and Ben and I talked for several hours. He tried to play some cute love songs on his guitar…but I hadn’t really listened to love songs before him so I didn’t really know what he was playing!!! After we realized that it was getting close to midnight, we decided to leave. One of my friends called me and I left the room and Magen told Ben that she thought that him and I should date and he said that he agreed, hoping that she would tell me about that later. My tires had been making a funny noise so Ben walked with me out to my car to look at my tires. My flashlight was in my trunk and when I got it out he saw my dress that I was going to wear to the homecoming dance that Saturday. I told him about it and the fact that I didn’t have a date and that a bunch of us from Chi Alpha was all going together since we all didn’t have dates. Unfortuantely he had to go to his grandparents 50th wedding anniversary that same weekend. So close!
The next day Ben was talking to his mom on the phone and she said that his grandparents didn’t want to have a party like they had all been planning. Ben was sad when he heard this, because he told his mom that he had met a pretty girl that he wanted to ask to the dance. She told him that he needed to ask me soon before I got snatched up by another guy. So he planned on asking me at the Wesley Foundation’s service and meal that evening.
The Wesley Foundation has a meal prepared by the “older” women from the Methodist church for the college students an hour before service. My friends and I were sitting on the front porch eating our dinner and Ben walks outside. He was standing listening to our conversation, and you know that moment when somone breathes in the the middle of a sentence? Well thats when he decided to blurt, “Deanna will you go with me to the dance?” I was shocked, because no guy had ever asked me to a dance before and I knew that he had to go to his grandparents anniversary party (which I didn’t know at that moment that it was canceled). So I sat there for a moment in shock and then finally said, ok. This felt like 10 minutes to Ben haha. My friends were sitting around in total shock because they had never seen us hang out, and then Ben said, ok, and quickly went back inside.
Also that night, Ben told me that the next day some friends and him was going to a Jeremy Camp concert and that one of the girls had dropped out of going so there was an empty seat if I wanted to come along. I said sure, even though at that time I didn’t really know who Jeremy Camp was. I knew he was a Christian artist and that my friends listened to him all the time. At that time I hadn’t really listed to much contemporary christian music. When we got to the concert, people was giving out extra tickets that their youth groups didn’t need. So our three other friends got tickets in the balcony together. Ben’s friend gave him a ticket for the second row center seat. Ben said that he didn’t want it because he wanted to be able to sit next to me and this guy was listening and said what seat do you have? He had an extra one for the seat next to that one! So my first concert ever was free and it was second row center, right in front of Jeremy Camp. Awesome first date!
Ben and I went to the homecoming dance. It was awesome. Afterwards, Ben asked me if I wanted to be his girlfriend. We had been praying to see if God wanted us to date and we both felt the same way, that he wanted us to date.
This past spring was 4 1/2 years that Ben and I had been dating. We knew that we would be dating for awhile because we wanted to graduate and be done with school for awhile before we got married. Ben had been thinking about this and decided that it was time for him to ask me. He decided to ask me while on his family vacation to Myrtle Beach. His family goes every year during the summer and since we have been dating they have invited me to go with them every year. Ben told his family about it and went and bought a ring. He was so afraid that his family was going to give it away because they would talk about it when I was asleep and other times when I might have heard. I didn’t hear anything though.
Ben told me that we was going to go out on a date and to bring a pretty dress. So that morning his aunt and mother took me out to get my nails done. His aunt said that she needed to get her nails done and she was going to bring us along. It was a lot of fun! Then Ben and I got ready and I found out that he was taking me to Medieval Times! I have always wanted to go there! I love anything from the Medieval Time period! I even have a sword hanging on my wall! If you have never been you should definatly go, it was awesome! When we left I told Ben that that was probably one of the best dates ever. He laughed and said that it wasn’t over yet. He said that he had one more surprise left. He drove me down by the beach and we walked a little ways down the beach. In the trunk he had a bag packed with a blanket. He put the blanket down and handed me a photo album. It was a collection of pictures from when we first started dating. He even wrote a poem about them beside the pictures. The last page said, “I have one last question to ask you…” then I turned the page and it was a picture of a ring and it said “Will you marry me?” And I was like….what? So I turned to him confused because he had been telling me that it wouldn’t be for awhile. And he was on one knee with the ring in his hand. I was so shocked (again, notice a pattern?). I ended up saying “sure.” haha Then I sat there for about an hour! Just amazed that it was actually happening! Then I turned to him and said really loud, “We’re engaged!!!!” There were some boys down the beach playing and they set off fireworks right after I said that. It was really neat how that happened at that moment. So we sat watching the ocean and the fireworks. We decided the theme to our wedding should be “Happily Ever After.”
When I got home, my friend told me that she was going to The Jackie Allen bridal show the next day in Lexington. She told me I should go, so I went with her. It was great getting to see the vendors and to get lots of ideas. We had to fill out a card and visit so many vendors so that we could win a grand prize. I really didn’t know what they were. There were so many brides there that I really didn’t think that I would win anyway. The first three grand prizes were gave away but they had a fourth! I listened to it and it sounded really neat, then she said my name! I threw my stuff down and ran up. Realizing I wasn’t on the Price is Right, I then walked the rest of the way! haha I had won a free night at the Castle Post in Versailles! It included dinner the night we arrive and breakfast the next day. It was too fantastic! It was crazy at how God was putting these “castle” themed items together!