Knoxville Wedding Photographers | How We Met

Hi friends!
This year, I wanted to be intentional about sharing more about us, our life, our struggles, etc. I think its important in the social media age to remind people that A. we're human, and B. we are normal. Relatively, that is. I also just really want to write more. I love writing. Always have, always will. English and Creative Writing were always my favorite classes back in school, and I've found myself longing to fill up that creative void. That being said, former English teachers, its been a while. Please excuse my (potentially horrendous) writing blunders.

jesse and quinn winx photo knoxville
jesse and quinn winx photo knoxville

Our story isn't frilly. Theres nothing written in the stars. We aren't particularly romantic people, just Jesse and Quinn. I think there is something to be said for that, though. Some of my favorite love stories are as simple as two people deciding they want to be together, against all odds. Odds being things like moving and in laws and bills and stuff, not some ridiculous Nicholas Sparks plot. So, settle in, here we go. 

To tell this story, I need to go back a few years before we met. I know I said that there's nothing especially extraordinary about us or our story, but there are some coincidences. Jesse went to Gibbs, I went to Powell. My parents were divorced when I was younger, and I lived with my mom. My father, however, lived in Gibbs. He lived next door to his brother, so when I visited his house when I was younger I would often end up at my uncle's house, hanging out with my cousins. Jesse, as it turns out, was one of my cousin's close friends. He also spent a lot of time at their house. Even so, our paths never crossed. I think that when God wrote our story, He must have been pretty proud of Himself for that one. Its easy to think, "why couldn't we have met back then?" but the truth is, it would have never worked. Jesse is around 4 years older than me, and chances are 16 year old Jesse wanted nothing to do with 12 year old Quinn. We both still had to become the people we fell in love with.

Fast forward to 2011. I'm now 16, Jesse is 20. I'm dating a guy, Jesse has just been dumped by a girl. Through mutual friends, hes heard about me. He stumbles across my social media profile, "follows" me, and that's where it begins. He is in a band at the time, and tells his bandmates that he thinks I am THE most beautiful girl in the world (duh) and  that one day, he's going to marry me. Keep in mind, I have never met this guy, in person or online. A few weeks later, I get dumped. I start hanging out with my friends again, and promptly swear off dating for a while. One night, several of my friends decide to head to a local venue, Longbranch, to see one of our other friend's bands play. I tag along. As I walk up the stairs of the venue, I see Jesse. He also sees me, and immediately hugs me. First thought? "Why is this sweaty man hugging me?" His first though? "Its her."

From there, we hung out most days. He'd drive from his house in Gibbs to my house in Clinton to pick me up, drive back to Knoxville to hang out for maybe 2 hours, back to Clinton to drop me off, then back home to Gibbs. I wasn't interested in dating him. At. All. I wouldn't say I strung him along, because I told him pretty early on that I just wanted to be friends. He understood, respected that, but never gave up. He became my best friend, and days where we were apart felt like lifetimes. Finally, about 3 months after we met, I got my head out of my ass and realized that he was a great guy who deserved a shot. He asked me to be his girlfriend in the parking lot of a shop he used to rent, written in chalk. Perhaps the cheesiest thing hes ever done, but also probably my favorite. He also wrote me a letter that detailed how highly he thought of me, and that if I wasn't ready to date him, he'd keep waiting, because he believed I was worth it. I still carry that note around in my wallet. Of course, I said yes. I'm a sucker for cheesy.  Afterward, being the particularly unromantic people we are, we walked across the street to sonic and bought a footlong hotdog and some cherry limeade. True love. 

I think one of my favorite things about our story is how he knew he'd marry me. Isn't that incredible? I've always heard the old "when you know, you know" adage, but never put much stock into it. Even though he knew before I did, I think I figured it out early on. Its different, when you find the person you're meant to be with forever; like coming up for fresh air, or a warm house on a cold day. Its like new sheets on your bed, your favorite meal, and fresh spring flowers all rolled up into one. Like something in your just clicks and everything you've been waiting on starts falling into place. I think that happens with a lot of stuff, though, like when you make the right move with your business or when you decide to have kids. People are always waiting on big grand gestures, signs that you're doing the right thing, but the truth is, it's a still, small voice. Even though its small, though, you feel it in your bones. I'm not entirely sure we can mess up God's plan for our life. I think we can make choices that set us back, but I believe that stuff that is meant to happen will happen one way or another. I'm so thankful that my husband was meant to happen to me. I'm glad he knew, I'm glad he cared. I'm incredibly glad we met when we did, that he was patient with me (and still is) and that he allows me to be exactly who I am. 

If you're waiting on that person for you, heed my words, it'll happen. Even though we met young, I often felt like maybe that wasn't something that would happen for me for a long time. I've seen so many posts like "everyones getting married and having babies and I'm over here eating this bag of Cheetos" Giiiiiiiiiiirrrrrl, listen. You can get married and still eat your cheetos, just give it time. Trust the process. Know that theres a plan for you, your love, and your life, and rest in that. When it happens, however it happens, its gonna be great. 


Pro photos by some of my favorite people: Alex Bee Photo | Erin Morrison Photography | Matthew & Brittany 
Crappy cell photos by your truly

Quinn Caldwell