There are some moments in life that show you the quality of the people that surround you. Sometimes, these moments show you the people that don’t meet your needs or expectations. And sometimes, these moments show you the people that hold the qualities you value most.
In Brandon, there are so many qualities that I value. Loyalty, honesty, strength, compassion, etc. And in our time together, we have shared many of these revealing moments.
One such moment occurred just one month after we started dating. After spending a few weeks apart for winter break and then deciding it would be a good time for me to meet Brandon’s parents (since they lived far away and it was one of the times he would be there with them), I rode a greyhound bus for 13 hours from Milwaukee to Omaha and spent a week there.
After our exciting week in Omaha (where I fell completely in love with his parents!), we started our road trip back to Milwaukee in his red pick up truck.
On the way home, we stopped in Dubuque, Iowa and visited one of his closest friends. Just minutes after enjoying froyo with Amanda, we got back on the road.
As we were heading down a hilly part of the highway, the car in front of us stopped abruptly, and Brandon had to slam on the breaks pretty quick. In those few seconds, our eyes met in the rearview mirror as the truck jolted forward into the car in front of us. We had been hit from behind by a large SUV.
I’ll never forget that moment that our eyes met in the rearview mirror. It was only a fleeting moment, but I feel that so much was said in that moment.
To be honest, I’ve forgotten a lot of the details of the aftermath of the crash. What we did first, who we called first, etc.
But I remember Brandon. I remember how he handled the situation and I recall the car accident as one of the revealing moments in my life. I learned that Brandon would be my protector.
Brandon’s very first response to the accident was to check to be sure that I was okay. He asked if I felt that I had any injuries, he looked over my arms and asked if I hit my head at all.
After ensuring that I was okay, Brandon sprang into action, going to talk to the driver in front of us as well as meeting with the lady who hit our car and caused the accident. He handled all of the insurance information and talked with the officers.
He also came back to the car and had me move to a safer place as we were still in rush hour traffic on the highway.
We all know about the fight or flight response, well….. I have the freeze response. In many difficult situations, I will initially freeze and not really know what to do.
After we were off of the freeway and out of harm’s way, Brandon challenged me– which is another thing that I learned about him and really valued. He challenged me to call our parents and let them know of the car accident and check in with them. While this may not seem like a super difficult task, it was enough of a challenge for me. He was asking me to take part in the details of the aftermath and then make the difficult call to our parents. Let’s be real, it was difficult because I had to call his parents who I had barely known for a week to tell them that we were in a car accident and totalled that car as well as call my family and tell them I had been in an out of state car accident with a man that they had never met……. My dad and brother-in-law were minutes away from making the drive out to pick me up and leave Brandon behind haha.
I consider this moment as one of the defining moments of our relationship. At least in terms of how I viewed Brandon and our potential lives together. Brandon showed me that he could take the lead, could be cool under pressure, would be concerned about my safety and would challenge me to step out of my comfort zone. All of these things are directly related to who Brandon is as a man as a husband.
As unfortunate as a moment that was, it really is one of the most important moments of our developing relationship and a revealing moment of Brandon, my protector.