*I thought I’d share some random pictures of our single days with you all in this post! 🙂
^Photographer on the weekends, and Starbucks barista during the week!
My friend and I said our goodbyes to the Parkin family, and hopped in the freezing cold car. As we sat there, waiting for the engine to warm up, he said, “So… it sure sucks that Sean is getting married, you guys would be perfect together.” Yup, those were my thoughts as well.
^Sean is extremely extroverted for those of you who don’t already know! He filled his single days with all the social activities you can imagine from traveling, performing/choir tours, camps and mission trips, school activities and most importantly family time.
December came quickly, and before we knew it, it was Christmas week! I was working the register on an evening shift at Starbucks, when he came through the door. Next to him, hand in hand, was his soon-to-be fiancé who just flew in. I greeted them, took their drink orders, and handed their cups to the same friend who was with me the night we were at their house. Sean smiled and whispered gleefully when his girlfriend wasn’t paying attention, “Tonight’s the night! I’m going to ask her!!!” I smiled back and performed a nonchalant happy dance for him. As they left the store, my friend asked, “What’s wrong?” I replied, “I’m not sure, something just doesn’t settle well with me about them.” He responded, “It’s because YOU want to be in her shoes, isn’t it!” To be honest, but I couldn’t deny it. I thought I was crazy! How could I feel such a way about a man who I had barely knew, and he was way out of my league to begin with!? It’s amazing how when we take a step back and look in the past from God’s perspective, how he already had began sewing seeds. Those seeds didn’t make any logical sense to me at the time, but I know now without a doubt they were from Him.
^Loved everything about my time in Europe the spring before Sean and I started dating!
^Fun fact: Sean spent a lot of time during his single years serving in youth ministry, going on missions trips, and running lots of races! 🙂
Months passed, and big things were happening in my life. It was time for me to quit my job at Starbucks because my photography business was finally REALLY taking off! Finally I was going full time and I was so excited! I hadn’t heard anything from Sean since I saw him in December, and we were approaching springtime. I spent most of the spring in Europe with my Aunt & Uncle and nephews; and with a summer full of weddings, I didn’t have much time to think about my love life. When I arrived home from Europe, Bri’Anne reached out to schedule a photo session for their family. That July, I met the Parkin’s at this beautiful little woodsy site in Oregon. As soon as I arrived, Bri pulled me aside. “I just wanted to let you know so you could be sensitive to it, Sean and his fiancé called off the wedding this January. He’s doing okay, but it’s still kind of rough.” My heart was so sad for him, but I perked up and got ready to meet their family. Guys… this was the first time I met the WHOLE Parkin crew. I was seriously blown away. His parents were basically perfect- they were SO IN LOVE, so special to see after 30+ years together. I had already met his amazing sisters, and then I met his brother Josh and his wife Anna, and their three kiddos- Jonathan, Henry, and baby Ruby. I don’t know how else to explain how my heart felt meeting & working with this lovely group other than I just knew… These were my people. I came home and immediately started working on their images. My mom walked by my computer and said, “Oh wow! What a beautiful family! Who are these people? Kal you look like YOU belong in this family.” My heart dropped, only because I could not agree with her more!!!
^Always had a camera in my hand!!! Or two 😉
^Sean also spent some time in Europe on a choir tour with Concordia University!
After having a nice conversation about all this with my dad, he encouraged me to just start praying. Praying that no matter what, the Lord’s will be done. And to pray for Sean and his heart. So I did. I prayed, and I prayed, and I PRAYED. Months of praying for him passed, and I began to feel restless. As I was walking in to Mt. Hood Community College to take an important test, I prayed this prayer, “God, I don’t know what you have for me. I don’t know what you have for Sean. But I do know I don’t want to be praying for a man who does not belong to me, so Lord, if this is something you have for me, open the door. If not, please clearly close it.”
Ding ding ding.
I looked down at my phone and immediately saw a text message from Bri’Anne. “Hey Kal! I hope this is okay, but Sean has a question for you, are you alright if I give him your number?”
To be continued….
Kalahan & Sean is a Portland, Oregon based Wedding, Engagement, and Lifestyle husband and wife photography team. We serve couples in Portland, Washington, Vancouver, and beyond - we love to travel!