One of my favorite parts of photographing couples is hearing their stories. Each one is so special and unique to the couple who shares it. While I am privileged to hear so many different stories, my couples never hear mine. So I thought maybe I should change that. Today on the blog, I’m starting a series on “How I Met My Husband.“
In case you need to get all caught up, her are the previous installments of our story.
Not too long after our "first date", we graduated high school. I would occasionally see Christopher at church whenever I would go to visit my sister and brother-in-law, but we didn't really speak to one another. We were just in different places in life. Fall came, and we started college. Over the course of college, I had two serious relationships. One relationship really stuck, and me and the guy got engaged before our senior year of college. Christopher was the farthest thing from my mind. I was consumed with daydreams of tulle dresses, lilac and yellow wildflowers, and all things wedding. As the engagement progressed though, it became clear that we weren't meant to be each others "forever". Three months prior to the wedding, we called it off. I had done everything in my life right up until that point. I graduated high school, went to college, made good grades, I was going to get married- and all of a sudden, I was the "unengaged girl". All the plans I had made, were shattered in the blink of an eye. I moved back home for the remainder of the semester, and finished student teaching while I got myself together.
It was actually during this season of life that Tierney Riggs Photography was born. A few months earlier, I had gotten my first camera. While planning that wedding, I realized how much I loved staring at other photographer's work. It was inspiring to me! So my parents gifted me my first camera for Christmas. With nothing more than a dream, I invested all my time and energy into learning how the camera worked, and I started to build my business. After college graduation, I applied for teaching jobs, and wasn't having any luck at all. I graduated during the Great Recession so jobs---even teaching ones--- were tough to acquire. I quickly grew very discouraged and even depressed. Not only was I the unengaged girl, I was jobless (with zero prospects) and living at home with my parents...not cool. For a change of pace, and to get my mind off of things, I decided to go spend some time in South Carolina with my sister and niece.
A few weeks prior to this visit, I remember getting a Facebook friend request from Christopher, "Huh, that's interesting. I wonder how he is doing." I thought to myself as I accepted the request. I didn't give it much more thought.
Me and Christopher's paths didn't really cross much at all during this visit down to South Carolina. But when they did cross, a switch flipped in my brain. My brother-in-law was taking his youth group on a missions trip to Utah. They were flying out of RDU, so I just rode with them to get back home. During the three hour van ride, I noticed Christopher. I mean I REALLY noticed him. You see, he was sitting beside one of his best friends, and they were cracking me up! They had me rolling! That was the moment I started falling for Christopher.
After the first date we had, Tierney and I would not talk again in person for over 4 years. I graduated high school and went on to college. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to study in college, or what I wanted to do afterwards. The financial crisis dominated the headlines in my last year of high school and during this time I became more interested in finance. When the time came to choose a study, I went with finance. I enjoyed all of my classes and everything I learned. I was blessed with the opportunity to work on campus and developed great relationships during that time. I played a lot of video games, skipped a lot of classes, and worked a lot of hours. All in all I’d say God was very good to me during those years.
During my last semester, I found out about Tierney’s ended engagement. I remember occasional conversations with my parents during the months following. They thought I should try talking with Tierney again, but I was not interested in the idea. After a conversation with my dad a few weeks after graduation, I decided I would send Tierney a friend request on Facebook. I did, and nothing changed.