How to meet and marry an Okie (on the internet) part 1

I get this question a least twice a week, in real life and on the internet: Did’t you just move from Oklahoma? Yes. How did you end up in Oklahoma? My husband, Kel is from Oklahoma so we went there because he had good job offers in his home base.

Follow up question: How did you meet and marry an Okie?

Well, sit back and read on: and give grace in the moments where you find yourself wanting to travel back in time and smack 22 year old Leanne across the face.


As we cranked out that Friday night’s pies we realized that we had a thousand things in common from the same car to the same middle name.

It was kismet and the start of a beautiful friendship, in which she encouraged me to start a xanga weblog.

What’s a xanga weblog? It was blogging, but it was a site comprised of blogs where you could associate and get to know other bloggers by common interests etc…

I was game, so start one I did. I was recently single for the first time since High School and determined to stay so for a while, so I took up new things, like guitar. Because it’s SO ORIGINAL to take up guitar in your early twenties… 

And since I was an accomplished guitar player after two weeks of lessons I joined a “blog-ring” called “Christian Guitar Players. If the shoe fits… 

Then one night after a late night at the pizza parlor I started clicking through the other xanga-folk who were accomplished, Jesus-loving guitar players such as myself.

Click… Read a post… leave a comment…repeat….

Then I came across this guy from Oklahoma, he seemed cool. The deep sort of cool… he’d written a post about church and his Dad’s battle with brain cancer, so I left him a comment:

“Hi, I got your weblog through a random click of the mouse.. I completely agree with your thoughts about what church is and isn’t… blessings to your family.”

He wrote back the next day via a comment on my blog: “Hey, I just started reading your xanga… you seem like a person that I could really get to know and converse with… I’ll be keeping up with you… ~laterz~”

And those are the first exchanges of our relationship.

Then we didn’t talk for months because in those six months he was offline and burying his Father after a heart-wrenching battle with brain cancer.

Honestly I forgot about him, it was one comment after all!

Then the following fall he was back and commenting on nearly everything I wrote. I had to go back and check… “is that the guy from June?”

Yep. It was that guy.

So we started commenting on each other’s posts, a lot.
Then we starting chatting on AIM (including a definition of AIM & feeling old)
Then we started emailing each other at our yahoo email addresses.

Then one night he typed something along the lines of “I bet you have an accent.”
I informed him strongly that I was a blank canvas, I had the lack of an accent.
Gauntlets were thrown and a phone call was made.
Me: “Hey, this is Leanne…” (dear God what was I thinking, calling a crazy internet boy?!)
Kel: “I know, you have an accent.”

Insert my laughing, protesting and generally feeling giggly and awkward before hanging up a few minutes later.

Weeks passed full of emailing and time spent on AIM.

Then one night I was up late watching a movie, a romantic comedy where everyone was screwing each other over on purpose and I started to cry. No one really loves each other anymore! They’re just in it for what they can get! This love thing is pointless, I may was well give up.  It was Intolerable Cruelty, I think.  

I went to check the computer, in that day I was using the shared family computer. No smart phones, no laptops, just me hogging the computer late at night, probably with ice cream.

Kellasatou, that was his handle, was online so I told him I was feeling bummed out and about to go to bed.

He asked if I wanted to talk about it, one the phone, I said sure but it was no big deal.

Then he told me I’d have to wait twenty minutes while he drove to work to get his cell phone, where he’d left it.

I told him no way was he fussing over my emotional evening and to stay put at home and chat on AIM or let me go to bed.

He signed off with a wink and a “call you in a few.”

I don’t like people fussing over me, except deep down I love it. Anyone else feel this way? 

But he wanted to fuss. Over me. Which hadn’t happened in a while. He wanted me to know that he cared enough about my bad night to drive to work, dig his cell phone out of a couch, and spend some time talking, making time.

I wouldn’t say this is when “I knew,” but he certainly had my attention.

(to be continued, because it takes a while to tell this sort of story)
Photo courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons, user ciranob

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  • Mark Allman

    Go Kel!
    I absolutely believe love does what he did. It steps in the gap and extends deep caring when the other person knows you need it. It also shows up at times as if you needed it and it is really them needing time with you. :) Love is worth those trips to work to get the cell phone; trips out to get something you are craving, trips to the kitchen to get something your best friend wants. You know they love you when you know if you say something out loud that you want that they will do all in their power to make it happen for you.

    • Leanne Penny

      Spot on Mark! Kel excels at many of these things, especially the trips out to satisfy my cravings. He’s a rockstar like that.

  • Brenda W.

    This made me smile a lot… looking forward to the next installment! And I laughed because I also took up guitar in my early 20s. I even posted about it recently.

    • Leanne Penny

      We were so gonna be rockstars.

  • Andrea Frazer

    Ha ha ha! Can I take up the guitar now also? Can’t wait for #2