I’m going to need everyone who has posted a Facebook status along the lines of, “Happy Anniversary to my best friend and the love of my life!” to form a line, so that in an orderly fashion, I can walk down said line and thump each of you right in the middle of your foreheads.
It was the summer of 1997, I was 19 years old and spending the break working in the office of a church my mother had started attending.
My parents had just gone through a shocking divorce, and by shocking, let me just say that to this very day, almost 20 years after their divorce, I’ve never heard my parents argue. Ever. They woke us up one fine Saturday morning and told us they had gotten a divorce a few weeks earlier and my dad was moving out. There was no warning shot fired, no attempt at counseling or reconciliation, just that one sucker punch when we weren’t paying attention. A year later, I broke up with my boyfriend of four years and my heart was still tender from both events.
Before I headed back for the next semester, my older brother Matt and I decided to go to Texas for a motorcycle rally with a friend’s family.
We borrowed a tent, loaded Matt’s car and joined a caravan of cars following the O’Bryant family to Texas. One of their sons, Zeb, was a year younger than me. Even if I was looking (which I wasn’t) I wouldn’t have looked at him twice.