I was blessed to have witnessed the marriage of Chris and Dora Barton this past weekend. A love story in its truest form. Chris grew up as childhood friends with my boyfriend, Brandon, which allowed me to join for the celebration as Brandon stood as the best man. Arriving in Maryland the night before, Brandon and I joined the festivities at the Barton’s family home, allowing us to meet Dora and enjoy their final night before the wedding.
It was the first evening I had met them both. Chris warmly greeted us at the door and led us to the group as he slipped an arm around Dora, joining his fiance. The couple met during the summer of 2011 in Ocean City, Maryland while Chris was a beach life guard and Dora, visiting from Romania, was working as a beach stand attendant. It was a friendship that lasted merely days as their love grew fast and strong. As the summer neared an end, their relationship became long distance putting the Atlantic ocean and 4742 miles between them. The next time they would see each other would be Chris’s visit to her home town of Cluj-Napoca, Romania, to meet her family and ask for her hand in marriage. At the age of 22, the couple no longer remained individuals, but were united as one. Their “I” became an “us”, and Dora found a new home here in the states.
I’ve noticed that recently when I get on Facebook, a new engagement or marriage has been announced. Another high school classmate or college friend is embarking on the next adventure, finding their “one” to share their lives together. My own childhood best friend, Meredith, shared the news of her engagement, to fiance Mike, with me just 8 months ago with a wedding to follow this summer. I can’t help but feel as if they are rushing into things, hurrying to get to the next step, maybe even making a mistake. But the second I saw Chris and Dora together, just as I saw Meredith and Mike, there is no mistake in trusting in love. Marriage is having faith in love, and acting on that feeling. A feeling so powerful all you have to do is see it to know, to experience it. A feeling that washed away any judgement or doubt in my mind, and left me with hope. Hope that Chris and Dora’s future will be filled with joy, faith, passion, and adventure, each and everyday.
Their story became a true life fairytale, without the distractions of Disney, but the simple pleasures of love.
“The most beautiful things in life are not seen, but felt with the heart.”
I wish you two the best.
I’ve been stuck, stuck in this feeling of limbo. I created this blog to share my dreams and goals of traveling abroad, my stories and adventures of travels and new friends. This was an outlet to express what I was going through and connect to friends and family back home. I had my year planned out my destinations set, and I loved and learned from every minute of it. Once it was over I wasn’t sure where my next chapter began. I wasn’t sure what to write about next.
I’ve since returned to school at UNCW for a final year, a transition year, a year I hadn’t thought about yet, a year I hadn’t planned. It will be a year that will end one chapter and begin the next. But more than anything it’s a year to enjoy, reflect and move forward. I’ve realized that I don’t know what I’m going to do come graduation in May. I don’t know what I should be looking for. I don’t know where I will end up. And honestly, all of these thoughts scare me. All I keep hearing is about how this is “the most exciting time in your life”, “you can do anything, go anywhere”, “don’t stress about a job, you’ll find something”. Thanks for the kind words and advice, but none of it seems to be helping.
So I’ve begun to turn for help, to career counselors, professors, friends and my parents. Although they have all told me the same advice as above, they also included a few more insightful words of wisdom, and this is what I have taken away:
– Make connections everywhere. You never know who you will meet and who they might know and where they might be able to take you.
– Be indispensable. Sophomore year I read a book called Linchpin by Seth Godin talking about this exact idea for an IMC class and it’s stuck with me ever since, a good thing too because it’s a skill to value. It doesn’t matter what your job is and what responsibilities it holds, do them so well that the company you’re working for can’t afford to not have you. Magic Johnson told me that.
– Be open. In this job market, you don’t know what you might find or what opportunities might fall in your lap. Don’t be so stuck on an idea that you can’t take a chance and veer from the plan.
– Internships are great, but once you graduate don’t ever take an unpaid internship for more than three months. Unpaid internships are tricky, and under much debate about whether they are ethical or not…. I suggest you read this and then form your own opinion: http://blog.muckrack.com/post/29334070653/whats-the-ethical-use-of-interns-in-journalism-and-pr
– Don’t be so set on your goals that you can’t see an opportunity when it falls into your lap. Yes, it’s important to be driven and have goals but it’s not so important that you give up on other chances. Life happens, life will steer you in so many directions you won’t know which way your facing. But if you try to stay on the straight and narrow then, life is what you’ll be missing out on.
– Dream big. I recently asked one of my professors if it was possible to dream too big, he shot that down real fast. Training doesn’t matter, schooling doesn’t matter, resumes don’t actually matter,(this is a big statement I know, and I know they will absolutely get you a foot in the door but hear me out). What matters is product. You can go to the best schools in the wold but if you can’t perform when called upon then what good are you? So what if you go to a medium sized, southern, public school. Represent it well and prove that you are more than capable, prove that you didn’t need an ivy league to teach you how to perform, prove them wrong.
I want to say it’s a start, but I’ve been preparing for this since I started dreaming about “what I wanted to be when I grow up”. I’m just taking one more step, that’s how I have to remember it. I will be fine, I know I will.