Eight years ago today, I woke up with a hang over from the countless rounds of shots downed at our rehearsal dinner the night before, and began preparing for the day that I married my best friend.
This marriage is a second time for both of us; Bill's first ending after bringing a son into their relationship and perhaps a general moving in different directions, amongst other reasons and mine...in retrospect, I would normally say that mine ended due to marrying too young, but considering I married Bill at the age of 25, most might argue that I was still pretty young. (What can I say? I accomplished a lot in a short period of time!) I think that my first ended mainly due to the other party not being fully vested and I was too young and naive to make it work for the both of us.
Bill and I met while I was living in Nashville, having moved there less than a year prior to get away from things that had recently failed up north. I was a corporate travel agent and he was one of my clients who happened to travel quite frequently with a local colleague. We laughed a lot and harrassed each other for about 6 months on the phone before we finally met face to face. I'd like to say that it was love at first sight but I think it probably took me an entire week before that happened. (Again, that doing things in a short period of time...). What I can say for sure was that after our first official date I knew, without a doubt, that even if things didn't work out for our long distance relationship, that I had a new perspective on the kind of relationship I wanted to be in.
I said goodby to him at the Nashville airport on Sunday morning and then I left there...waiting for him to not call. Anticipating the akward phone conversations that were sure to follow at the office when we tried to remain business like and act like the date was nothing. I figured a best case scenario might be one where we decided to give a long distance relationship a shot but struggled to figure out how to make it work over time.
What I got instead was a phone call that very afternoon after he landed and was back in CT. What followed were endless phone calls lasting until the wee-hours of the morning, bi-weekly visits (on weekends he didn't have his son) and a three months later, a cruise to the Caribbean over my 24th birthday when we decided to get engaged. (Again with the short time period thing...)
Two months later I was on the move again and this time it was to CT to be with him. The following year flew by with settling in to a new job, fixing up and selling a home, moving to a temporary home, a new job oh...and wedding plans of course. And before I knew it, May 27, 2000 had arrived and I was about to become a "Baker".
I couldn't have asked for a nicer evening. We were married at sunset, overlooking the ocean and as I walked out to stand next to him, the wedding reception on the floor below us was bellowing out "Beer Barrell Polka". How fitting.... We danced all evening and then moved the party on to Bill's college roommate's bar for more dancing (some on the bar, some involving $20 bills) and partying into the wee hours. The next day was spent with family and friends and finally on Monday, we were off on our honeymoon to Turks and Caicos.
Since then we've bought and sold homes and welcomed three more children into what started out as a ready-made family of three. We've had some obstacles to overcome over the years; some were pretty funny, like psycho ex's, (we both had one of those) and others were not, such as sudden deaths in the family and a mammoth sinkhole in our back yard. But we've never faltered in moving through these as we both travel on the same path to an ultimate goal... Growing old together.
Happy anniverary Bill - I love you more today than ever before!