In January, I walked home from church on an extremely chilly day and, as I bustled along, wrapped up in my (pink, Urban Outfitters) coat, Matt Chandler sidled up to me and said, "Hey, have you met my brother? He just moved back into the ward."
(For y'all who aren't LDS, a ward is a group of people who live close to one another and attend church and church activities together at the same time, kinda like any church out there except all of our wards fall under stakes and regions, which fall under the general LDS Church which is headed by the Prophet, who is currently Thomas S. Monson. It's all the same doctrine and experiences, just broken down into manageable sizes... which means that, when Andrew moved back into my ward, he moved to a building in an apartment complex next to ours that luckily met with the first floor of my apartment complex. There's a lot of wards at BYU. We were in the 101st. There's not a lot of wards other places. When I moved to Lee's Summit, we were in the Raytown Ward, which met in a building twenty minutes away from our house and covered at least a half hour to forty-five minute radius.)
Which is when I saw Andrew lumbering behind him. We half-smiled, half-avoided each other and then Andrew zoomed off ahead of us.
"That was weird," I thought to myself, forgetting about it quickly since it left me feeling flustered.
Two weeks later, I went to a party and noticed Andrew straight away, but since we'd seen each other a few times since our initial January run-in, I knew that he was going to talk to everyone around me and pretty much act like I wasn't there, so I didn't even try to start a conversation, though I do remember thinking "Why won't he even look at me?" It was a little unnerving for me to notice someone who never seemed to register that I came into the room.
While at the party, Kendra and I stood near Andrew the entire time. Kendra talked to Andrew and his friends; I just talked to his friends. As I stood there, a boy came up to me, we talked for a while, and he got my number right before Kendra and I decided to ditch, ironically, with Andrew and his friends. As we walked outside to a nearby store so we could by ice cream, I received multiple flirty texts from the boy I'd just met and, not knowing anyone was behind me, said something like this to Kendra, "Seriously?! It's been like three minutes. There is no way I am hanging out with him tonight."
I know that sounds really bratty and I would never have said it to anyone who wasn't close to me. Also, like I said yesterday, I was never a boyfriend kinda girl and didn't like when men made me feel claustrophobic. I liked feeling free and relationships often made me feel suffocated or queasy or both (because, let's face it, I'd never been in a relationship with the right person. Did I just made all you single girls cringe? I did! My dad used to say that to me all the time and I hated it! But it's the truth! I promise. Feel free to cringe away.).
Anyway, as soon as I said it, I heard someone snicker behind me. I turned around and there he was: Andrew Chandler, accidently listening to my conversation. I was mortified. Not only was someone behind me, but it was someone who seemed to dislike me for no reason!
Want to know what he thought when he heard my Leave-Me-Alone rant?
Mr. C. thought this: "She's SINGLE! Yes!"
We got to the store a few minutes later and as soon as we got there, Andrew, red faced, said a few sentences to me about ice cream and summertime jobs. Then we walked back to my car and, when we realized my car was way too small to fit everyone inside of it, Andrew said, "I'll ride in the trunk." To which I said, "No." To which he said, "C'mon!" To which I said, "No way!" and then I had him climb into the backseat and promptly assigned a girl to sit across his lap.
Back at my apartment, Andrew stood by me while dishing his ice cream, followed me into the living room, sat as far away from me on the floor as he could get, and then talked to everyone around me, never addressing (or looking!) at me, except to say "Ostriches don't really stick their head in the ground!" Then he fell asleep during the movie we were watching because he didn't like it and slept while everyone was talking.
Except, as I later found out, he wasn't sleeping. He listened to every word I said so that he could figure me out more (he'd had a crush on me since the first time he saw me) and tried not to chuckle at everything I said. Then it was one o'clock in the morning and, with all his friends, he walked out the door, barely waving his hand my way and saying "bye!" to everyone else.
Wedding photograph by Lovelight Photography.