Then and Now…Mrs. Funnel Cake

I didn’t have the most typical high school career, but if I had not made the decisions I did then, I am certain I would have never met Mr. Funnel Cake.


In high school I was a shy, geeky dork who was never asked out on any dates. I used to cry that nobody would ever “like me” in that way. Instead of focusing on my nonexistent love life, I took as many advanced courses as I could, but at 14 I considered myself “too dumb” to learn a foreign language.


Oh yeah…I was totally into anime and video games and cosplay!


My sister and I used to try on prom dresses for fun, although I never attended a prom or any high school dance. This one looks suspiciously like a wedding dress…

In my sophomore year I switched high schools so that I could double up on English and history credits in order to go to university early. I abandoned a normal teenage social life to attend university full time for the last two years of high school, but I met a lot of great friends in college.


I also took about a billion pictures of myself between the ages of 12–22. (Maybe I was preparing for wedding-day photographs?)

With an early start at The Ohio State University, I had time to choose my major (also change my major), and by the time I was 17 I was applying to enroll in the highly competitive design department that accepts just 18 students per year.

High school students are eligible to apply, but generally they must complete a freshman foundation year before starting the design program’s three-year sequence. After applications are reviewed, prospective students are invited for interviews with the staff members, and during my interview, something important happened.

The professors let me know they liked my portfolio and would be glad to have me start the program in 2006 after a foundation year. Well, I told them that wouldn’t work for me. I had taken design foundation and general education courses for the past two years, and I was not about to waste another year of my life waiting for this program to begin. I wanted to start the following autumn!

Apparently the professors were a little surprised by my gutsy request but it made sense to them, so I became the first (and maybe last) student in the history of the department to begin the program directly after my high school graduation. At 20, I believe I was the youngest graduate of my program ever.


Because I began when I did, I happened to be traveling abroad in autumn 2007. If I was not traveling then and I did not know my classmate who met Mr. FC in Greece, I would not have been in the right place at the right time.


Enjoying chocolate fondue for the first (and last) time ever

In high school I could never picture what my future husband would look like, but I assumed he would be American. I was obviously wrong about that…just like I was wrong about being unable to learn a foreign language. I never forget how lucky I was to meet Mr. Funnel Cake, and I often think about all the choices we made that led us to meeting one another. I am thankful every day for that.


I’m still shy and I am still a dork, but I have grown more confident since my high school years. Leaving America made me grow in ways I never knew possible. I started learning and thinking in a different language. I began to see the world through other cultures’ points of view and realized that my country may not be the best country ever. The world is a big place and I was no longer limited to the continental USA.

Now I am a designer in Switzerland with a slight international twang to my English. I travel to a new country every year, and I have friends from all over the world. I need to eat my meals with a fork and a knife (something we don’t do that often in my family), I like beer now, I willingly go hiking on weekends, I wear keffiyehs all the time, I wouldn’t dream of wearing my Birkenstocks in public or dying my hair a crazy color again, and I deeply value my private, quiet Swiss privacy bubble in public.

Although I am still very American, I’m becoming a little more international. I am trying to adapt to Swiss and European culture. Who knows, maybe in another 10 years my family will think I’m even stranger.

How have you changed since high school?

*All pictures are personal*


Mrs. Funnel Cake

Zürich, Switzerland/Columbus, Ohio
Wedding Date:
October 2011
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  1. Member
    Mrs. Lyre 512 posts, Busy bee @ 10:59 am

    I love this story! You were adorable in high school, and I can relate to that whole no one will ever like me in that way feeling. Also, I’m super impressed by how ambitious you were with your schooling!

  2. Member
    WoodenShoes 389 posts, Helper bee @ 11:24 am

    I also thought I would NEVER be able to learn another language, but it was my fiancé that had to travel to be in the right place at the right time. Had he not had a more-or-less career stopping soccer injury, he probably wouldn’t have taken the time off from soccer to travel (and work) in America to meet me!

  3. Member
    Mrs. Pain au Chocolat 2298 posts, Buzzing bee @ 1:56 pm

    Thanks for the glimpse back at a younger Mrs. FC! I wonder if I’ll ever be fluent in a foreign language, but that would strongly depend on living in an area where my language skills would get tested and used each day.

  4. Guest
    Kefka, Guest @ 4:18 pm

    you still into anime

  5. Member
    Mrs. Bracelet 1409 posts, Bumble bee @ 4:21 pm

    I love reading these glimpses into the past lives of other Bees!

  6. Member
    Mrs. Jaguar 6086 posts, Bee Keeper @ 5:55 pm

    I love seeing your early pics – you still look exactly the same!!

  7. Member
    cicijapan 263 posts, Helper bee @ 6:06 pm

    Great story and great Yuna costume!

  8. Member
    this-time-round 10219 posts, Sugar Beekeeper @ 6:17 pm

    Great post !!
    As we age, we begin to realize that truly High School figures little or not at all in the overall person we are as adults (Teen Years = 5 vs Lifetime = 70, 80, 90, 100+)
    Really in the big scheme of life, HS is nothing.
    Sadly, there are a lot of teens who struggle unfathomable hurdles in those years… IF ONLY they could know in the long run, it really isn’t the be-all-to-end-all the media and others portray
    THANK GOODNESS… because some of the “biggest dorks” in HS turn out to be the best people in the long run with the most to offer mankind.

  9. Member
    lealorali 4370 posts, Honey bee @ 6:57 am

    Will you stay in Switzerland or do you think you’ll come back to the US?

  10. Member
    Mrs. Funnel Cake 1171 posts, Bumble bee @ 9:07 am

    @Miss Lyre: sooo easy to think we’ll never be loved. I was so dramatic. Haha.

    @WoodenShoes: it’s so easy to see how these international romances could slip away! Serendipity indeed!

    @Kefka: Not really. I still like it but I haven’t watched it in years. Still sorta playing FF games though!

    @Mrs. Jaguar: haha yeah by 16 I was probably as tall/grown as I would be. It was easy to convince people was in my 20s. ;)

    @CiciJapan: Thanks!

    @This Time Round: I think I disagree that high school figures little into the person we become. I believe it can be a great time of change and many of us start on the path to our careers and social lives. It is certainly an important time for education and preparation for the kind of life you want to have, but I agree that it’s not the be-all-end-all of our lives. Life definitely gets better after high school!

    @lealorali: not sure! We probably won’t go back to the US, but you never know. Maybe we will move somewhere else in the world too. :)

  11. Member
    Mrs. Castle 1190 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:05 pm

    I love this post! I was totally into Anime! Sailor Moon was my favorite for years.

  12. Member
    blonde17jess 1290 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:33 am

    LOL too cute! I love the way fate plays into our meetings with significant others… :)

  13. Member
    silkspectre94 620 posts, Busy bee @ 9:40 am

    Yuna!!! <3
    Don't worry, you're not alone. I was super dorky, shy, lived and breathed all things sci-fi, anime, fantasy, cosplay, conventions, video games, comic books.. *cough*stilldo*cough*
    I think I've changed so much since high school, I'm not longer DEPENDENT on those things to make up my character. Sure, I'll still swoon over Final Fantasy games or Doctor Who, but it's not my ONLY defining quality, or what makes me different and unique! I'm that, plus so much more! Confidence is key. I'm so glad you've found not only your confidence, but the love of your life! :)

  14. Member
    Mrs. Hyena 2537 posts, Sugar bee @ 8:45 pm

    Aw, I love high school stories! Amazing how timing works out. :) I was another one of those “Aaah no one will ever love me!” people. Luckily we were both wrong. :)

  15. Member
    stephk527 987 posts, Busy bee @ 11:50 am

    I loved this insight, Mrs. FC! I think it’s so impressive that you were so dedicated to your schooling/career and also that you basically took it upon yourself to travel abroad. I’m so happy for you, specifically that you’re happy with yourself (something really rare, I think, whether you’re an adult or 16).

  16. Member
    jacofblues 1468 posts, Bumble bee @ 12:45 am

    Awww Mrs Funnel Cake I loved this post! I love that you have the knack of self reflection! I still sort of reflect on my highschool experience negatively!

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