Kaitlyn: I’m not a fan of the cliché of being a high school sweetheart nor, if asked, would my head strong 17-year-old self, tell you I could ever imagine myself marrying a boy I met in high school. I had too many dreams I wanted to accomplish, and I wouldn’t let a boy stand in the way. Now, I look back and I can’t imagine not sharing the past 8 years of life with Tony. He is patient, funny, compassionate, and encourages me to love the Lord and follow His path. He embodies all my faults and has helped encourage and foster my dreams. So, thank goodness for the irony of the situation and that my high school sweetheart came into my life and stuck around for good.
I knew of Tony Davis, but had seldom had a
conversation with him. We were two of about
seven people going to the district history fair in
2011. Tony unexpectedly took a seat right
beside me on the empty bus, and for the rest
of the day I was pleasantly surprised to learn
just how much, that sweet, reserved boy and
I had in common. When I was getting nervous,
prior to my interview with the judges, he leaned
over and gave me a warm and comforting hug
and told me how well I was going to do. It was
a hug that I still crave 8 years later when I am
anxious or sad; it is the kind that is genuine
and melts the stress away.
Tony: In the following weeks, as we continued
to hangout, I knew I wanted to ask Kaitlyn to
be my girlfriend. We began dating on
March 14, 2011 after an evening of watching
The Bachelor together at my house (LOL). The following year and a half of high school, included two proms together and several “surprise dates” that we took turns planning for each other.
K: His intentional conversations, sweet considerate dates and humble personality had me hopeful for the future. He was everything that I nightly prayed for in a spouse, but doesn’t college tear high school relationships apart?
T: As our senior year of high school grew to a close, I thought of the challenges to our relationship that were on the horizon. I had always wanted to attend the University of Florida and Kaitlyn seemed vehemently opposed to attend an in-state school. I was ecstatic to be told by Kaitlyn over lunch one day that she decided to attend UF. We both knew many challenges were ahead and that most high school sweethearts break up in college. We both decided we would pursue our own dreams without letting our relationship limit either of us and knew God would lead us where we were meant to be.
K: While I dreaded us growing apart, at every milestone and challenge in college, we both grew more in line with each other. Our values, morals and aspirations continued to align. It was like each new year brought a whole new relationship—as we grew into who we were individually we matured into an even stronger couple. This made me excited to see what the next year of young adulthood would bring. Unfortunately, soon those years would bring long distance. I graduated early and took a job back home in Orthopedics, in prep for Physician Assistant school and Tony accepted a spot into UF’s Master of Biomedical Science.
T: We embarked on a long-distance relationship in January 2016. This semester proved to be the most challenging time of our relationship between adjusting to long-distance and the stress of my final semester. We began to grow apart and faced many challenges. After finishing undergrad in the spring of 2016, I moved home to begin an internship. The summer together brought us closer than ever. I grew immensely in my personal life as well. My faith grew in leaps and bounds, I relentlessly exercised and lost 50 pounds, and I developed a clear vision for my future. At the end of the summer our relationship was stronger than ever and I knew with certainty I wanted to marry Kaitlyn. We began long distance again that fall, but remained very close and did not let the distance between us get the upper hand this time. We traveled to see each other and went on trips together.