September 15, 1998 – Tuesday – 11:49 p.m.

Today was a crazy day.

I talked to Emily last night and she said the strangest thing:

“Jacob, you have to promise me something.  If neither of us are married by the time we are 30, let’s marry each other.”

That blew me out of the water.  That’s not very far away.  We shall see.

I sometimes wonder if I’m called to be single my whole life.  Sharon, quite possibly the world’s greatest wife and mother, is already taken so staying single may not be a bad thing.

Speaking of, Sharon said she saw Rebecca St. James in concert last night. She hung out with her family and even talked about me to Rebecca.  Crazy!

I don’t even know Rebecca, but I miss her.

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August 16, 1998 – Sunday – 9:10 a.m.

I called Sharon last night, left a message and she called me back.

I miss them so much.  All that is in that house is what I want for my own life.  Sharon told me how Hannah is taller than Laura now, that Hannah cooks breakfast sometimes and can crack an egg with one hand.

It is August again.  I know exactly how Lees-McRae and Banner Elk feel this time of year. RA training begins tomorrow, but without me for the first time in three years.  I remember my first room there, the window, the view of the ground, and that old spoon that someone threw out.

I called Abigail two nights ago at her house in Tega Cay, SC.  We had such a nice talk and she really seemed to genuinely care about me.  She was so happy that I called and she said my name they way she used to say it.  I love the way she says it.

I do have some good friends on this planet.  Thank you God.

Yesterday was a great day.  I worked with Dawn, a beautiful girl who just turned 18 and graduated from high school.  She is engaged.  It was only the two of us working yesterday.  She seemed to open up to me a little bit.  I pray I can have a good friend in her.  I pray that when classes begin I can meet some people close to my age that my spirit really connects with.

I went to the movies alone yesterday.  I saw The Mask of Zorro.  It was alright, but Saving Private Ryan and The Truman Show are the best movies I’ve seen this year.

I’ve been writing a lot recently.  I want to be in another show.  It feels like I’m starving, not having a project to work on.

Today is the last day I will ever be 21-years-old.

Time to go enjoy it!

May 6, 1998 – Wednesday – 2:12 p.m.

Another day closer.  I’ve been on the phone a lot.  It seems that on the 17th, the day after Jeni’s wedding, I will move to Virginia Beach.  I called Regent University and they said it would be best for me to come in May because no apartments would be available in August.  Since I don’t have a car, I need to stay in their campus apartments and they tend to fill up pretty fast.

So that is 12 days from now.  This, of course, is bad news for me and Sarah.  She cried last night.  We had planned on having the summer together.

Now we don’t.

But God is doing this.  I have to go into my future.

In about an hour, Sarah and I will go have dinner with Sharon.

All of this is so exciting and scary.

I think the only way any of us survives growing up is because we don’t realize it is actually happening.

April 8, 1998 – Wednesday – 9:41 p.m.

Tuesday afternoon Sarah and I had a nice conversation down by Elk River.  We are slowly saying our goodbyes.  We simply shared a few droplets of our different oceans together.

Ann-Marie and I did a scene together tonight in front of the entire Performing Arts Department.  It was a little comedic sex scene from Lysistrata, but with out actual sex of course.  Everyone stood up and applauded when it was over.  Kinda weird.  We did the scene in the studio and not on the stage, so everyone was sitting on the studio floor.  Other scenes have been done that way, but I’ve never seen anyone get a standing ovation in the studio before.

Sarah got a trip out of it.

Last night the most amazing thing happened.  Curtis and I went to visit Sharon for I needed to return all of the Christmas decorations she let me borrow.  We stayed over and talked with Sharon and Laura for about an hour.  Then, when it was time for little Hannah’s bedtime, she let me go up with her and tuck her in.  I sat by her side and prayed with her.  And said goodnight and kissed her on her forehead.  It was completely awesome and will easily be one of my most treasured memories from my senior year.  It reminded me that there is a larger and more important life of parenting that awaits me after college.

Thanks God!

March 30, 1998 – Monday – 4:00 p.m.

This month is nearly over.

I talked to Sarah on Saturday.  I asked her if this is what she wanted, for us not to be together.  She said that she wasn’t sure for the longest time and finally she prayed and gave it all up to God.  The day she did was the day that I came to her to let her go.

We both felt this was right and was supposed to happen.  We held each other and told each other not to forget how much they were loved.  I asked if it would be wrong if I kissed her goodbye.  Thankful, she said it wasn’t.

I kissed her.  We both cried and then I left.  Sunday was spent at church and with Sharon and family.  We drove around on the Blue Ridge Parkway, ate ice cream and pizza and visited a lake.  It was a fantastic time.  Lindy and I hung out with each other that night and I called Sarah just to say hi.  She said she wasn’t doing really well, but she didn’t tell me why.

Today she came into the computer lab while I was working in there and rather than talking across the room, we just emailed each other back and forth.  I think she was able to better express herself through writing and without having to look at me.  She said she was just sad because she misses me.

I miss her.

Through writing emails, we decided to meet out in the hallway and find an empty classroom.  Once there we just held each other, and, with tear-filled eyes, she kissed me passionately.

I love her.

I think we plan on talking later tonight.

Oh God.  I want you to always be first in my life.

Can she be second?

November 29, 1997 – Saturday – 5:30 p.m.

I am writing to the light of my very own, completely real, Christmas tree.  My apartment smells like a forest.  I’m pretty sure it’s a fire hazard and completely against policy, but I’m the RD, so whose gonna write me up?!

We saw Anastasia last night.  Same old love story, but it was a fun and delightful animation.

I spent the night there and Sharon and I got a chance to talk a lot last night and this morning.  She is an amazing woman.  She’s taught me so much during my time here.  And she even let me cut my own Christmas tree from their Christmas tree farm.  She bought me lights, gave me decorations, and I’m staring at it now.  It is so beautiful.

It’s my first ever real Christmas tree and it’s just for me.  I can’t stop looking at it.  I can’t wait for Sarah to see it.  Maybe we’ll just sit here on my sofa and stare at it in silence.

I realized today that I have so much here to love.  Christmas is about giving.  I’m simply going to give away all that is in me to my friends around me.

I love them so so much.

I want to share my Christmas tree with them.

I want to share my love with them.

I want to share my life with them.

November 28, 1997 – Friday – 5:00 p.m.

Yesterday was Thanksgiving and I spent most of the day on top of Sugar Mountain.  Marisa, Mason, their cousins, friends, and parents were there and Mason asked me if I would pray for the meal.  I was happy to do so.

The meal was nice, but the family was not.  They are full of bitterness and not love.  But they sure could make me laugh.

I came home and stayed up until two in the morning, writing a short story about the kiss Sarah and I shared on Saturday.  What a perfect Eternal Instant it was.  I feel like I’m still living in that moment, my lips on hers, yet it was so unexpected.

I watched The Spitfire Grill this morning and cried.  Then I met up with Marisa and skied for the bulk of the afternoon.  Their whole gang was there skiing as well, but I never saw them.  It’s easy to lose people when skiing.  It really felt like I spent the afternoon on those slopes alone, with the occasional few moments with Marisa.

This was my first Thanksgiving in Banner Elk.  Three years ago I was in Cincinnati.  Two years ago I was in Hampton Roads.  Last year I was in New York City.

I’m going to meet up with Sharon and family for the evening.  We are going to see a movie.