Kris worked after school at Long John Silvers. I can still recall the combined smell of sweat and fryer grease and who knows what that seemed to permeate his uniform. Not exactly an aphrodisiac. But it was sweet that he’d stop by after work, late at night when Momma didn’t know, and tell me good night through my bedroom window.

This was one of those pivotal moments that you can’t help but wonder, every now and then, what if I’d said no? More importantly, what if I’d kept my plans (and generously offered private financial aid) to go to Bob Jones University for college and actually did the (somewhat) traditional college-work-family order? I’m totally cool with the way things turned out, overall, because hindsight is like that, and the thought of spending 4 years at the ultra-conservative college absolutely terrifies me now. But still, the what ifs do happen from time to time.