A Long Road to the Beginning
It was really all by chance that we ended up at the University of Wyoming together. Lucas was originally planning on playing football at Baylor but was injured his senior year. He then received an offer from the University of Wyoming. I had one offer for a golf scholarship, and it was from the University of Wyoming, one of the coldest schools in the country (not exactly ideal golf weather). However, since it was my only offer, I jumped on it as soon as I could! It is still crazy to think this football player from Texarkana, Texas, and this golfer from Colorado Springs, Colorado ended up at the only University in the state of Wyoming.
I am one year older than Lucas, so I was in Wyoming before he ever thought about coming. We didn’t cross paths until we ended up at a mutual friend’s party. Lucas says he noticed me right away and had an instant “crush,” but I wasn’t so sure about him. We went two more years before we began to spend time together and go to FCA together, and eventually we went on a few dates. I remember telling my roommate, “No, I’m not going to start liking him. Don’t worry. We are just friends!” It only took another month for me to finally admit to her I actually did like him. Lucas asked me to be his girlfriend in October 2013. This was my junior year of college, so I only had one year left in Wyoming after that. We stayed together through my graduation. Then, it was time for me to make a decision. Lucas still had two years of eligibility to play football at Wyoming. I was done in Wyoming, and I was looking to play golf professionally. That was something that wasn’t going to happen in the cold weather of Laramie. I moved to Arizona in 2015 to take my chance on professional golf while Lucas finished his college career. We continued a long-distance relationship for four years, visiting each other as often as we could while supporting each other’s dreams and goals.
During those four years, we moved-A LOT. I lived in Phoenix for two years and Lucas ended up training in Las Vegas, Nevada. This made for an “easy” four-hour commute to see each other. When he was picked up by the Dallas Cowboys in 2017, I moved back to Colorado. Then, when he went back to Las Vegas to train, I moved with him. Next, he was offered a chance to play in the Canadian Football League, so I decided to live as close as I could and moved to Michigan since I couldn’t go to Canada for that long without being deported. When that season was over, we went back to Vegas again. Finally, we ended up together in Texarkana in September 2019, when Lucas started coaching football for Pleasant Grove Independent School District and I started working at Northridge Country Club. It was like the stars had finally aligned.
On the night of New Year’s Eve, I had no idea I had the biggest surprise waiting for me! All day, Lucas was acting weird. We went to the gym to work out in the morning, and he kept texting the whole time. He told me he was just texting his mom, so I didn’t think much of it. When we finished at the gym, he decided it was a good time to go get his battery fixed on his car. It was a little strange, but I guess he needed a new battery. We were watching the Wyoming football game that night and right in the middle of it, Lucas got up and left to answer a phone call! That is something he would never do! His dad, Tom, said he thought it was one of the coaches from the XFL where Lucas was looking to play football the following year, so that made sense.
Once the Wyoming game was over, it was time to get ready for a New Year’s Eve gathering with the neighbors. When I was finished, I came into the kitchen and Lucas had a bag from Crocker’s Jewelers on the counter for me. I had asked for earrings for Christmas, so I immediately assumed this was my late Christmas gift. You can imagine my confusion when I opened the jewelry box, and it was EMPTY. I was so confused until Lucas got down on one knee and pulled out another box with the most beautiful ring I had ever seen! Neither of us remember exactly what he said, but it was the easiest answer of my life to say “Yes!” Remember when he was texting all morning? He was texting his mom about going to pick out an engagement ring. His battery? He actually went to Crocker’s to go ring shopping. And the phone call in the middle of the Wyoming game? He was really Face Timing my parents to ask their permission to propose!
It was finally time to start the wedding planning. Task number one? Pick a date. That was easier said than done (especially when Michael, Lucas’ other brother, got engaged a couple weeks later!). We were attempting to navigate dates between the high school football season, the NFL season, the XFL season, baseball season, and golf season! This left us with a small window of time in either January or February. Soon after, the entire world turned upside down with COVID-19. Lucas was playing for the Tampa Bay Vipers in the XFL when their season immediately got suspended then cancelled. He came back to Texarkana, and we decided to shoot for January 2, 2021 as the day. We thought we would for sure be in the clear of COVID by then! It was eight months away!
As we got closer to our wedding date, we saw that this may not be behind us quite yet. Many of our friends and family members were having to reschedule weddings, downsize significantly, and even cancel completely. We talked about it every day and discussed what we should do. It was very hard because a lot of our closest friends and family members would not be able to come. We were missing a huge chunk of the people who were the most important to us. However, in the long run, we were getting married for each other and for our future. Everything else took a back seat to what was most important about our wedding, which was our love for each other and gratefulness to The Lord for bringing us together.
It’s safe to say our wedding day was the best day of our lives. Did everything go perfectly? No. Did I forget things I had planned on doing that day? Yes. Did any of that actually matter? Not at all. I wouldn’t change a thing about that day. We felt blessed and we are very thankful to everyone who came to witness our marriage!
Cake: Bri Flanagan, Twisted Fork
Venue: Sacred Heart Catholic Church (ceremony), Northridge Country Club (reception)
Dress: Gracyn Elizabeth
Flowers: Kristen Hutson Events
Hair: April Yeager
Makeup: Kimberly Bearden Beauty
Photographer: Molly Kendrick and Brian Jones