Like I told you all in Part 1, I feel like no matter how I tell our story I can’t seem to do it justice. I mean, what are the chances that the first person I ever seriously crushed on would end up becoming my husband? Even back then, I knew that it wouldn’t happen and it was just a school girl crush. Boy, was I wrong, and I am so glad I was!
That day, sitting out in the car in front of his family’s house, that was what I had waited for my whole life. You read fairy tales and grandparents tell you that you will “just know” when you are with the right one. I clung to that. I was one of the few that refused to settle until I had that feeling and that moment when he asked me how he should introduce me, I got that feeling. I knew that I had found MY ONE.
To many people, including many of my family members, this relationship seemed so sudden. I had only recently ended things with my ex-boyfriend and he had only recently ended things with his ex-girlfriend. We were supposed to take time for ourselves….well that’s what other people thought anyway. Man am I glad we didn’t listen!
That day, we walked into his family’s house and he introduced me as his girlfriend. I’m telling you, they could not have been more welcoming and nice. I was super nervous and his grandfather (whom I love dearly), found a way to crack a joke and ease my nervousness.
“Hey grandpa, this is my girlfriend Christina.”
“Well I sure wouldn’t kick her out of bed.”
I’m pretty sure the whole family cracked up for a good 10 minutes on that one. I was part of the family from that moment on. I spent time talking with his uncle who was in the Army, I met his sisters and aunts and uncles, officially met his parents as his girlfriend and not just someone attending the wrestling matches. Now I look back on that day and I remember smiling the whole time. It felt great to be there and to have this wonderful man call me his girlfriend.
Unfortunately, his leave came to an end and he was stationed 4 hours away at an Air Force Base in Georgia. We were determined to make this work so we decided it was required that we both make the effort and that we needed to see each other every other weekend. We made the deal that we would take turns driving as well. By April 2010 we were splitting our time between Florida and Georgia. It wasn’t a fun drive but it was totally worth it!
When I went up to visit him, we would hang out with his friends and he would show me everything Georgia had to offer. When he would come to visit me then we would spend time together and visit with my friends and family. We knew that we wanted to be together for the long haul and quickly started saying I love you to one another. This was our forever but distance is hard. I was enjoying my job and he had to leave for a month worth of training in Alabama for the new position he got. We decided that once his training was over, I believe in September time frame, that I would move up to Georgia with him. We had it planned out and I was excited.
Then a dreadful day in June I get called into the HR office of the college I worked at. They informed me that they were eliminating my position at the college and therefore I was now out of a job. I had never been more devastated in my life! I had NEVER experienced anything like this. With tears in my eyes, I packed my belongings and got in my car. The first reaction I had was to call Michael. I told him what happened as I was crying. Without any doubt or hesitation in his voice, he said, “Why are you crying. That’s not a bad thing. Now you can move up here with me sooner.” Talk about God at work!
Within a few days, I had packed up my clothes and headed to Georgia. I received unemployment since I lost my job within months of leaving the military and I started looking all around the area in Georgia for a job. I must have applied to dozens of jobs and didn’t even get an interview. I was feeling so discouraged. I had never been without a job and I was not one to ride out unemployment. By the time August came around, I was still without a job and it was time for him to leave for his 30 days of training. I didn’t want to be by myself in Georgia so I went back down to Florida to stay with my parents.
The first few months of living with Michael had been amazing. We mesh so well together and had settled into a routine with one another. Now, I was without him and he was without me. It wasn’t fun and we didn’t like being separated again. Luckily, the room he was placed in at his training was a private room and we decided that I would go to Alabama and be with him. We had spent enough time apart. Now was time to be together. I didn’t have anything stopping me. I still had no job (regardless how hard I tried to find one) and the college courses I was taking were online. The decision was easy. I packed my stuff up, hugged my parents and got on the road.
His training was grueling and took a lot out of him but I was glad I was able to be there for him. He was working towards a goal and at the end of the training, he became an instructor for an Air Force Airman Leadership School. Being there all those nights watching him study and put together teaching material was amazing. His work ethic is as high of a standard as his values and morals. I swear it made me fall even more in love with him.
Once training was over, we left Alabama and headed back to Georgia. I had been looking for jobs online while we were gone and finally found a yearlong temporary position at a college just down the road from our house. Once I started working, things just seem to be falling into place. We were enjoying our life together and were already discussing marriage. Then, in October 2010 we found out we were pregnant. The path was clear to us both. It was time to get married and have the family we both wanted so desperately. The family we wanted to have together!
November 27, 2010 we stood before our close family and a couple of friends on a beach in Florida and said “I do”. Everything was perfect. We were now married and have a child on the way. Life couldn’t have gotten better.
A dreadful day in December, sitting in a little room at the doctor’s office, we were told that the baby didn’t have a heartbeat. Our world came crashing down and we didn’t know what to do. What was clear though, is that we had each other and we were going to get through it together. That little baby may not have been born into this world but it was born into our hearts and we both know that we will see our child again one day in heaven.
We had each other and though it took time, we forged forward to build a life together that will last forever. God helped us through that rough time and it was obvious that our marriage was being built on a solid foundation. We had only been married less than a month and we experienced a tragedy that brought us closer than ever. It brought out more love for each other and showed the true meaning of “in sickness and in health”.
Words can’t describe how grateful I am to call him my husband and times of difficulty only provide more reasons why we are perfect together.
*** Stay tuned for Part 3 of our love story. ***
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