Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Married in Style: MSU couple on getting married young

February 14, 2022
<p>Photo illustration of Taylor and Christian Halquist at the Beaumont Tower in East Lansing, Michigan, on Feb. 3, 2022.</p>

Photo illustration of Taylor and Christian Halquist at the Beaumont Tower in East Lansing, Michigan, on Feb. 3, 2022.

Photo by Lauren Snyder | The State News

When applying for a school like Michigan State, there’s a typical college experience one can expect to have, should they want it: House parties on the weekends, passive-aggressive roommates, Tinder hookups with strangers and sweatpants to class. 

Taylor Halquist, however, took a bit of a different route. She’s a fashion lover, a social work junior at MSU and wife to Christian Halquist, an MSU alumnus. 

Taylor’s style feels like if Kate Middleton and Dakota Johnson met in Paris. It’s chic, classic, colorful and a touch boho with an effortlessly cool French girl quality. Her favorite accessory, of course, is her husband, Christian.  

Taylor and Christian met at Sky Zone, an indoor trampoline park where they both worked. At the time, Taylor was a junior in high school, and Christian was about to leave for college.

The two had an almost instant connection, Taylor said.

“We were number one on the Snapchat besties pretty fast,” Taylor said with a laugh.

Christian said the two talked all summer, and he asked her out nine days before he left for MSU.

“We started dating and then I moved right to East Lansing,” Christian said. “She ended up here two years later.”

married-undergrads-2-3-22-ls-3

Though long-distance relationships are daunting for many couples, Taylor wasn’t intimidated by the fact that her boyfriend was leaving for college mere days after their relationship started. Rather, the prospect of dating a guy in college was exciting for her.

Eventually, the distance became a challenge, but after about a year, Taylor was able to join Christian, who was studying fisheries and wildlife, at MSU.

“Since I moved here, it’s been a lot easier to build more life together and have the same community and the same friends,” Taylor said, “That just made a world of difference.”

After a year of dating while Taylor was in college, Christian proposed in MSU fashion at the Beaumont Tower, where they had previously shared a kiss at midnight, per MSU tradition. 

This came after many conversations — with each other, with both sets of their parents and with mentors at their church. Taylor and Christian had been talking about getting married from the start of their relationship. 

“I feel like we started talking about marriage way too early,” Taylor said, sharing a laugh with Christian. “We were way too young; we were just being dumb.”

At that point in their relationship, Taylor believes that they didn’t fully understand the weight of the commitment of marriage. However, coming to MSU was a period of individual growth for Taylor, as she struggled to define her identity and priorities. Religion became a haven for her, and Christian, as well. 

“We found the church that we’re at now and like, my perspective on so much completely shifted,” Taylor said. “Our whole relationship changed that year.”

This was a positive change for both of them, as they prioritized putting Christianity at the center of their relationship. However, it wasn’t an easy transition. 

"I feel like it was hard … just the growing,” Taylor said. “We had to figure out where we were spiritually together, but we came out on top.”

Support student media! Please consider donating to The State News and help fund the future of journalism.

This experience left the two ready to commit to each other on a deeper level. There were some hesitations, of course, including the financial aspect of marriage. 

married-undergrads-2-3-22-ls-9

“Initially, I wanted to wait for the financial aspect,” Christian said. Christian was going into his senior year at MSU when he proposed, and with the pandemic, job prospects were uncertain. 

Taylor had only just finished her freshman year, and though she planned to graduate with her degree in social work early, it would still be about two years until she’d join the workforce. 

However, advice that Christian had been given by a friend stuck with him.

“Someone said to me that if you keep saying 'We're going to wait until we have full time jobs,' what’s the next thing you’ll be waiting for?” Christian said. “Eventually, we got to a point ... where I was able to drop that worry.”

After that, the two sat down with their parents to plan, armed with spreadsheets and budgets. Taylor’s dad was cautious at first, but all parents were supportive, from wedding planning to finances to the marriage itself. Their friends were nothing but excited for them.

As for their peers, Taylor got a kick out of their surprise, and noted that most of it was instinctual, but polite. Taylor said a girl at their youth ministry noticed her wedding rings and exclaimed something along the lines of, “You’re married? And how old? What am I doing with my life!”

“I kind of like it,” Taylor said. “It’s kind of fun!”

For Christian, his twin brother is getting married soon, along with a few of his friends from high school, but other guys that he meets express surprise that he's married. 

“If they say anything it’s like, ‘Dang, you’re young!’ because of the commitment, and I feel like not a lot of people are really looking for that right now,” Christian said.

School is stressful by itself, especially during the pandemic. Add wedding planning to the mix and it seems overwhelming. Luckily, Taylor is a skilled planner, and as soon as Christian gave her notice that he would be proposing in a few months, she got straight to work. 

Pinterest, where she gets all her style inspiration, became her best friend as she searched for dresses, imagined tablescapes and looked for venues. Christian and the groomsmen wore dark green suits, and Taylor’s bridesmaids wore artfully mismatched dresses in a soft, peachy nude. 

The vibe was warm and boho, yet elegant. Taylor even had her dress picked out before the proposal — a gorgeous, off-the-shoulder piece with romantic, boho layers. Christian designed a map seating chart as an homage to MSU, and their dog got to participate in the wedding, as well.

The bouquets busted with creams and peaches, with loads of greenery which complemented the brass details throughout the wedding. Taylor and Christian were married in style. 

After a relaxing honeymoon in the Dominican Republic, Taylor and Christian were ready to start their lives together. Weekly date nights are tradition, and though they're living on a budget like most college students, they’re doing their best to make the absolute most of it.

Christian said getting to experience life together is incredibly special.

“I got to see Taylor graduate high school, and we got to go through college together. … We grew up together … and we got to watch each other grow up,” he said.

married-undergrads-2-3-22-ls

For Taylor, it’s the day-to-day things.

“Just living together is super fun,” she said. “Learning each other’s habits has been the best and worst thing. … It feels all adulty.”

However, spending time together has proven to be a challenge despite living together. Christian has worked full-time most of the year, and Taylor juggles being a part-time student with a social work internship and a job with her church. 

“It’s important to make sure that we actually do separate that time for each other,” Taylor said.

The two love their weekly dates, and Blue Owl is a favorite spot of theirs. Additionally, they love using their apartment to host their friends. 

Clearly, theirs isn’t the stereotypical MSU experience, but that doesn't bother them.

“(A typical college experience) was all I wanted for a while,” Taylor said. “But then, I had a big shift in priorities, and I think I didn’t really care about that anymore.” Going out with girlfriends is still something that Taylor loves to do, though she loves a night in with Christian even more. 

“I like to dance,” Christian laughed. “But I just kind of live like, if you need alcohol to make it fun, it’s probably not actually that fun.”

Additionally, they love going to sporting events, football and basketball being their favorites.

As for married advice for fellow students in relationships, Christian said, “If you’re in a dating relationship, your relationship is going to go one of two ways, you’re getting married or you’re going to break up, and if you can identify that early, you’ll probably save yourself a ton of pain.”

Neither Christian nor Taylor think that getting married young is the right choice for everyone, but both advocate for intentional dating. 

“My biggest thing would be, be rooted in a good community,” Taylor said. “Community made a world of difference in our relationship both before and after getting married. … It’s just been a really healthy support.”

What do they love most about each other?

Taylor loves Christian’s passion.

“In the nicest way, you're either all in, or completely don’t care. … You don’t think you’re creative, but you are — in putting things into action.”

“Taylor puts everyone pretty much before herself,” Christian said. “She has a lot of really long phone calls because she’s a lot of people’s, ‘Something’s up, I’m going to call Taylor,’ which I think is a testament to who she is.”

Discussion

Share and discuss “Married in Style: MSU couple on getting married young” on social media.