Swooning over Kirk Cameron and my husband

Almost four years ago, I shared with you a few embarrassing moments from my life.  I did not share, however, one of the very most embarrassing moments of my life that happened way back in fourth grade and involves Kirk Cameron.  It’s a story that only a few select people in my life know, and it recently came up again when I MET KIRK CAMERON!!!  (Swoon!)

Let me explain.  In fourth grade, our student teacher gave us an assignment to write a story about being on a deserted island.  I think we got to pick three things to have with us.  We also had to talk about how we got off the island.  Writing was as much my thing back then as it is now.  I had started writing a couple of stories for fun in third grade, but I took off with writing in fourth grade.  These sorts of assignments thrilled me.  I got to work. I wrote an elaborate story.

I don’t remember all of it.  I don’t remember the three items I brought with me on the island.  But, I do very much remember how I got rescued.  My story ended with Kirk Cameron (whose poster adorned my bedroom wall) pulling up in his yacht and us riding off into the sunset.  I’m not positive, but I’m pretty sure we got married in my story.  I turned in my story. I got an A on it, but it didn’t stop there.  Our student teacher decided he should read some of the best stories to the class.  Mine was one of them.  I am blushing as I write this.  I was mortified that he was reading this to my classmates.  It wasn’t too bad until we got to the Kirk Cameron rescue.  Truthfully, I don’t remember the reaction of my classmates.  And I was far from the only little girl with a crush on this teen heartthrob, but I do remember being incredibly embarrassed.  I was much more careful what I wrote for school assignments from that day forth.

Looking back now, it’s funny.  It’s cute.  And I’ve shared this story with my husband.  So when I saw a couple of months ago that Kirk Cameron was coming to our area along with contemporary Christian artist Warren Barfield to the “Love Worth Fighting For” marriage conference, I was excited to get tickets.  I presented the idea to my husband. We talked about it and decided it would be a good anniversary gift since our 14th anniversary fell 10 days before the event.  We discussed whether it’d be feasible to leave the kiddos at bedtime, especially the baby who is still nursing and has had more than his share of sleep issues.  Chris was willing to go.  I know he could see how excited I was.  Once the decision was made, he teased me about how I should ask Kirk if he’d rescue me from a deserted island.  I’m pretty sure I tossed a pillow at him.  But, he also gets points for listening and remembering.

Kirk Cameron was relaxed, funny and well spoken answering questions during the VIP Q&A session before the event began.

This past weekend was the conference.  We coordinated everything with my parents and left them in charge of the kiddos.  Chris, bless his heart, helped me decide on what to wear.  We headed just over an hour away to the conference.  I had gotten us VIP tickets, so we got to go early for a Q&A and autograph session with Kirk.  After a late lunch at a nearby Mexican restaurant, we got to the church.  I was excited to see Kirk Cameron in person.  But, I was also looking forward to time in church with my husband.  We’ve had a struggle since our son was born to get to church for a myriad of reasons.  We’ve missed it.  And, though we have a strong marriage and are best friends, we’ve also found that we have to work harder to stay connected in the midst of raising little ones.  I hoped for a good evening.

It’s just what I got.  We had a chance to look around the lobby at the various booths of items for sale when we first got in.  My husband made a pit stop by the bathroom.  I stood back looking at what the different tables had without getting in the fray of crowds.  These sorts of things are often a bit overwhelming for my introverted self.  And then Kirk Cameron walked by.  He was maybe six inches from me.  For just a moment, I was that fourth grade girl again.  I sort of froze.  I’m sure I could have said hi and he would have responded.  He seemed like a cool, down-to-earth guy.  But, I had no words.  I’m not so great at approaching people to talk anyway (unless I’m interviewing them for an article), and this is super true when I’m a bit awestruck.  The same thing happened a few years ago when I met a favorite author, R.A. Salvatore, at Gen Con.

I watched Kirk walk behind one of the booths.  And then slowly, I returned to the present.  All I wanted to do was find my husband and tell him what had just happened.  I caught his eye as he was walking toward me.  He later told me he knew from my expression that I’d either just seen Kirk Cameron or seen a lion take down a gazelle.

Kirk Cameron talked to me!!!

The Q&A was good.  I finally worked up the courage to raise my hand right at the end and didn’t get to ask my question, but I enjoyed just listening to the dialogue and snapping some photos.  The autograph session was also nice.  Kirk chatted well with folks and answered questions while signing.  He seemed like a nice guy.  We didn’t chat much beyond exchanging pleasantries.  I had no words and was quite proud I was able to speak at all.  I’m sure he had no idea how excited I was.  I’m a quiet, reserved person.  But, the cool part is that my husband knew.  He knows me better than anyone.  And THAT is what the evening was really all about.

We had a good service.  Seeing a childhood crush on stage at a church, talking about God and how important a good relationship with God is to have a good relationship with our spouse was a bit surreal.  I’ve been following Kirk Cameron on Facebook for a while and still marvel at this.  I respect him as a man of faith standing out against the crowd.  He’s got awesome ministry opportunities as the result of his notoriety.  And he’s continued to follow God’s leading when it’s not popular.

I enjoyed meeting Kirk Cameron.  I have his autograph posted on the side of my refrigerator (way up high where my daughter can’t reach it; she loves to draw and pretend to write on everything right now).  I enjoyed the music from Warren Barfield; we bought his latest CD, “Redbird.”  But, I most enjoyed the time with Chris.  He’s my best friend, my soul mate and the love of my life.  If I were stuck on a deserted island now, I’d want him to show up.  And I have no doubt that he would.  Through our 14 years of marriage and five years of dating all through high school and into college, I have learned that this man would do anything for me.  He loves me, he supports me and he makes me a better person just for being his wife.  HE makes me swoon. We’ve been through hard times together.  We’ve fought many battles, but this conference reminded us that we’re on track fighting together and not fighting each other.  From the beginning of our marriage, we’ve been Team Shannon.  We can survive anything together and with God.

This last year has brought more challenges including my bed rest before having our baby boy and then dealing with having a second baby in our family who also had some challenges with reflux and sleeping.  We’ve got more challenges on the horizon with a major surgery scheduled for me next month.  Life isn’t easy, but it’s good.  Our motto has often been, “I’d rather go through hard times with you than good times without you.”

These are the things the evening reminded me.  These are the things for which I’m always thankful.  We had a nice car ride home that gave us time to discuss all sorts of things.  As always on our dates, it’s nice to have a chance to talk without interruption from our little peanut gallery.

It was a surreal evening combining one of my very first crushes with the love of my life.  I’ve definitely changed in the last 25 years since I wrote that story.  I can only imagine how my fourth grade self would have reacted if I could go back and tell her that one day she’d get to meet Kirk Cameron and that while it’d be an awesome experience she would be most excited to hold the hand of the man sitting next to her and be blessed beyond compare with the true love of a Godly man.  I think she’d be dubious when I told her that man who was hand-picked by God just for her would make her swoon way more than Kirk Cameron ever could.

And, just for the record, I’d highly recommend checking out the “Love Worth Fighting For” conference if it comes near you.  You can have a chance to swoon a bit over Kirk Cameron and then get down to business connecting with and swooning over your spouse.  It doesn’t get much better than that!

I’m adding a plug here for Kirk’s next project, “Unstoppable,” which will be in movie theaters one night only on Sept. 24.  Check it out: Unstoppable: Official Movie Trailer (Kirk Cameron, 2013)

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