Note: This post is kind of long. And it includes some writing that is straight from my journal, 4 years ago. I love looking back and seeing how God was at work in my life!
It’s pretty common to remember where you were when major news events happen. We can all recall where we were on 9/11. Our parents remember where they were when President Kennedy died. Some of us remember where we were when the Challenger exploded, and when O.J. Simpson’s white Bronco was followed on live television. We remember where we were when it was announced that Osama bin Laden was killed.
I work in news, which means for most (a.k.a. ALL) of the major news events of my adult life, I have either been in a television newsroom, or at the scene of the actual breaking news.
The news value of this story is not on par with the examples I’ve listed above.
BUT the news factor of my personal life, is.
The last few months of this presidential campaign keep bringing 2008 memories rushing back.
Because when you work in news, not only do you remember where you were when certain events happened, but all of life is framed in this sort of news-timeline.
It was August, 2008.
The Republican National Convention in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
I was Dana Brown. I was 28 years old, and I was covering my first political convention. I think I look like a baby here! I think I need one more thing hanging around my neck, what do you think?
I was covering the convention for my old job, with Hearst Television, producing morning reports for close to 30 TV stations across the country. I was working overnights, and I was just thrilled to be out in the field, because unlike my current job, that job was mainly a control room job, so getting out in the middle of the country was really exciting!
I was there for Sarah Palin’s speech, and John McCain’s speech, and I watched the big balloon drop from our skybox. It was fun.
But what I remember the most from that trip was the moment I realized I was – for sure – going to marry Michael Ritter.
At the time, Michael and I had been dating – long distance – for about 9 months, officially. Things were moving fast, and we had fallen in love. Michael was living in Texas, I was in DC. Over the Summer, he had been looking for opportunities to work in the Raleigh-Durham, NC area. His brother and family lived there, it was only about 4 hours from me, and he thought it would be a good move for him.
But – nothing about it was working. The logistics were just not going to happen. He’d need a job, an accessible apartment, and someone to help him with his personal care. None of the above were lining up, even though he was trying to work it all out. It was frustrating. We wanted so badly to just be closer to each other!
Then, one day while I was at the RNC, I got a phone call.
Michael left me a message, “We need to talk.”
Those are not normally good words when you’re in a relationship.
I was in a trailer where we had our workspace, working.
But I stepped outside and called him right back.
I was surrounded by satellite trucks and generator fumes.
I will never forget what happened during that conversation.
That was the moment I knew I’d marry him.
The following is from my journal, September 2, 2008:
How cute is this!?!? Do you ever look back at old journal entries or think back on memories, and see your life coming together? I love to do this. And this is a reminder to me of how important it is to document our lives – so we can go back and see where God has been faithful, and where we’ve grown.
Thanks for reading.