It was 20 years ago this past May that my Knight in Shining Armor asked me to be his bride. We “saddled” up his Lincoln Town Car and sped all the way to a romantic place; the old, abandoned spillway in Texarkana, Texas.
This was not our first time to visit this place. Reading all of the graffiti had sparked a plan in my Knight’s mind, especially after we read how one couple had written, “I fell in love here”. They had let the world know about their momentous occasion on this old spillway. We discussed how this would be something we would like to do also.
My Knight’s next visit to see me included a trip to the old spillway. We were armed with our paint “guns” and camera ready to make our mark on the world. What I didn’t know was that my Knight had planned to pop…er…write THE question there!
He took our paint “guns” and made me hide my eyes while he painted away. Finally, he said I could turn and look as long as I captured his creativity through the lens of the camera first.
Squinting through the lens of the camera (those were the days before digital cameras and large LED panels), I read these words, “Will you marry me?” My mouth opened wide to let out an excited scream and I almost dropped the camera! My Knight quickly said, “Take a picture first!” I quickly snapped the picture and ran into his arms to happily exclaim, “Yes, Baby”! I sprayed my answer and we snapped many more pictures.
Two months later, on their honeymoon, they visited what is now fondly called “our wall” and added their wedding date. They took more pictures to record the union of this amazing Knight and his young bride.
Years went by and this Knight and his bride added children to their union. More visits to their wall and three children’s names were added. No one had painted over this momentous event and the couple cherished the memories they had made.
The next visit to their wall was with great sadness to add a name and an angel ornament. It was left in a small crevice beside their baby’s name that went to live with Jesus in Heaven.
More years passed and this Knight and his bride joyfully visited their wall time and time again. Each time they waited with nervous anticipation as they drove to their wall. Holding their breaths, they would park their vehicle, top the hill, and almost hesitantly look down the hill to their wall. Had anyone painted over their story this time? Time and time again they were relieved. Their story was still there and they happily added two more names to their wall. A total of 6 blessings were added to this Knight and his bride at this time and they were happy to have a place that recorded their story in such a unique way.
Through the years, trials and hardships visited this family. The enemy tried everything he could to take out this Knight, his bride, and their beautiful children. He hit them where he knew it would hurt them the most. He tried every tactic, every trick in his book, to no avail. The battles left many scars and took their toll.
With battle scars, but love in their hearts, this family visited their wall again to add yet another name of an angel God had let them know very briefly. With all that this family had been through it was with deeper anticipation that they topped the hill to their wall to hesitantly look below. Had anyone painted over their story this time? To their dismay, their wall had been painted over by the city; maybe in hopes of…well…who knows what? With tears streaming down the Knight’s face, he looked to his bride and she saw the deep pain in his eyes and they both cried. What was once a landmark was now invisible; erased by bigger “guns”. Signs that stated, “Don’t sit on this wall” replaced where their love story had once been. Newer graffiti had been added by others. Obscenities, cartoons, endless names of unknown painters now covered their precious wall. Their hearts were crushed.
Hand in hand they walked the entire spillway looking for a place to write again. Hundreds and hundreds of unknown names had been left untouched by the bigger “guns”. They contemplated leaving, but decided this would only give the enemy an advantage. Squaring their shoulders they decided they would write somewhere. They would begin again!
We searched for the perfect place to begin our new story and decided that just down from where we began 20 years before would be perfect to…begin again! This time, each member of the family wrote their own name.
Our wall looks different than it did in the beginning just as we do. A lot of water has passed under the bridge and with it disappointments and pain. We found a new place to write on our wall to celebrate a new beginning in our love story. This Knight in Shining Armor, his bride, and their beautiful blessings will not be taken out. The enemy will not defeat us. We are making new beginnings and are going to be stronger than ever for the next 20-30-40 and more years!
Maybe I will post more pictures soon...