Fairytale, Chapter 8: Transferring Schools

If you need to catch up or review any of the previous chapters, click here. As Kelsey mentioned, in November I decided that I wanted to transfer schools. There were a couple of events that led me to this decision.

  1. We were heading into our last semester of community college and would have to transfer after our sophomore year anyway. I had started to think ahead about where I wanted to go. I knew I wanted to go to the same place as Kels so I asked her where she thought she was headed after NIACC and she said Simpson College.
  2. I remembered that Simpson had recruited me to play football when I was in high school. I got to thinking that I might want to play again. I contacted the coach to see what he thought about me joining the team in the fall. Simpson is a Division III school, so there are no scholarships available and pretty much anybody can join the team. But the coach encouraged me to transfer down there mid-year so I could participate in off-season workouts with the team. This made sense to me, and I was pretty out of shape at the time.

Simpson sports

Bonus: Garrett was attending Simpson at the time. Around this same time, he decided that the spring semester would be his last at Simpson. By transferring, I could hang out with him before he left college to pursue his career in music.

So, after Christmas I transferred to Simpson in Indianola, Iowa (two hours from NIACC, which is where Kelsey was finishing up her AA degree). Garrett and I had a great time that semester and he helped me in my faith walk (probably more than he knows). I joined the fraternity that he was a part of (Sigma Alpha Epsilon) and also started to make some really great friends that are a big part of my life today.

Kelsey: This semester of college--where I was at NIACC and Eric was at Simpson--was, at least for me, the most difficult period of our relationship. The distance was quite a strain. I do not like to talk on the phone and didn't want to have to catch Eric up on my life every single night. After arguing on the phone many nights, we decided that we would not force it anymore. We would talk daily, but mostly via MSN Messenger. This arrangement worked better for us. Plus, we both wanted to enjoy college where we were and hang out with our friends. I remember getting really close to my roommates during this semester, and I'm so glad I had the opportunity to do that.

BACK TOGETHER We survived the semester and the next fall, Kelsey joined me at Simpson. It bothers her that it looks like she followed me to Simpson, when in fact I knew she was going there and I just went a semester early.

Kelsey joined a sorority on campus (Pi Beta Phi) and played volleyball her junior year. To be honest, we were both miserable playing sports. It took up so much time not only during the week, but almost all of our weekends as well. We had little time to spend with each other amongst our other obligations. So, our senior year, we decided not to play sports.

We both became heavily involved with our fraternity/sorority (I was the president and Kels was a vice president), going to campus worship and Immersion (a church service at Hope for young adults, now called Re:vive), Kels had an internship in downtown Des Moines, and I worked at a food distributing warehouse three days a week (I was saving up for some hardware you will hear about next week). We took one class together while at Simpson: a May Term class that ended with a two-week trip to Scandinavia, which was a great experience together.

When my fraternity had its spring formal, Kelsey was named the "SAE Sweetheart" of the year. She was also named "Greek Goddess" (kind of like Homecoming queen of the sororities). And when Kelsey's sorority had their spring formal, I was named their "Arrowman." We were both so honored, as these awards are voted on by the members of each fraternity/sorority.

Kelsey: Eric and I were not a typical couple (actually, I heard after we graduated that people called us the Simpson Power Couple). I think all the guys in Eric's fraternity thought it was strange that I hardly ever came around. I think Eric and I saw each other every day, but I'm not sure. If we did, it was only during short times between classes. Our best college friends were a year younger than us, and we wanted to enjoy our final year with them. Also, I was a very serious student and Eric was working a lot (to pay for my beautiful engagement ring). We knew we would be getting married, so we wanted to make the most of our time at college.

We had such a great senior year, and it really was a magical ending to our college days. We had gotten engaged over Christmas break, so we were also planning our wedding.

Graduated and all grown up. Time to get big girl/boy jobs and join the real world.

Next week I will tell you about how I proposed. Read how Kelsey felt about it here.