eleven years... - West + Rose

eleven years...




This past Wednesday marked 11 years since my husband and I went on our first date.  Nearly every year I write a sappy post...and this year is no different.  I am a painfully nostalgic person and I relive memories so vividly I can still smell or feel what the air was like at the moment the memory was made.  So for those of you interested, here are five things about us...



| O N E |

We are college sweethearts and graduated from Auburn University a semester apart.  Our first date was at Mike & Ed's BBQ restaurant in Auburn, AL on October 4th, 2006.  After eating supper we went to the free concert that Auburn put on every year we were students there.  This particular concert was Randy Rogers Band, Miranda Lambert and Dierks Bentley.  It was an awesome concert, during which we were extremely awkward.  If you had told me before the date that we would end up happily married with two children and our dog from college eleven years later I would have said "YEAH, RIGHT!", but by the end of the date...even in all of it's awkwardness, I knew that I had just had my very last first date.


| T W O |

 I broke up with him.  I was 20 years old (a baby) and was terrified of getting hurt. I could feel that he was most likely the one for me...and it paralyzed me with fear.  I was a bit self-destructive at that age, and maybe even a bit damaged, aren't we all to some degree at that age? So I came up with some lame excuse and broke up with him.  It didn't last long and we were in contact nearly the entire time we were broken up.  I kept him at arm's length for a long time, until he was done with my games. One night, we were discussing our relationship and I tried to explain my fear of getting hurt.  He replied "You are not the only one who has everything to lose." With that statement, my life was forever changed and my heart opened up completely to him and let him all in...and I have been all in ever since.

| T H R E E |

We lived together in a small apartment with our dog for a year before getting married.  We had just graduated from Auburn.  We were as poor as church mice, but it was one of the most fun years of my life.  It was a tiny shack of an apartment in Auburn with Frankenstein living directly above us based on how she walked...We barely kept our heat on in the winter and instead wore layers around the apartment to keep warm...because, well we both graduated in 2009...when the market crashed...meaning we were broke! We had an Egyptian couple living next door to us that we would exchange home cooked meals with so we could learn about their culture and traditions and they could learn about ours.  It was our first year on our own as adults. We spent time learning how to cook and appreciate quality food and wine and how to keep a home together.  I worked for the local hospital and also co-taught a computer class with hubs at the local Steelworkers Union.   He eventually took on teaching that course solo and got to know some amazing men during that time.

| F O U R |

We got married at Callaway Gardens in a very small ceremony.  I was actually pregnant when we got married, so judge away if you want. I don't care.  I am nothing, but proud, because I was pregnant with my amazing son.  We had been dating for nearly five years by that point.  We saw each other just before the ceremony started, not because we planned to, but because my best friend sang the opening song and there was no way I was going to miss it.  So, I snuck in a side door right where he was standing behind the organ.  We never said a word to one another. Instead we winked, smiled and held hands briefly.  It was one of my favorite moments of the day.  I chose not have a videographer at our wedding so I could remember it only as I remember it.  I knew I would nit pick every little thing if I watched a video of the day. My memory of our wedding would never match up to what the videographer chose to capture...I have never regretted this choice.

| F I V E |

Hubs is genuinely good friends with some of my best friends and vice versa.  Because of this, our circle of friends feels more like family.  I am very thankful for this.  It has enriched our lives in ways I could never have expected.  I have always felt the opinions of your friends are some of the most important opinions you can listen to when it comes to your potential spouse.  Every single one of my friends knew he was the one for me and embraced him as a part of our group nearly instantaneously.   Our family has been blessed with a very large support group of friends that genuinely love us and love our family and I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge that their support has played a role in our success as a family.



I am feeling very blessed.  Reflecting on my relationship with this amazing man does that to me every time.  I am so thankful for my college sweetheart and all of the memories we share.  We did a lot of growing up together and have experienced a lot of heartache and joy along the way.  Some of our very favorite people have died, like his Daddy and my cousin Robert.  My Daddy was diagnosed with cancer and then beat cancer.  We experienced the two very different births of our children, two of three of the happiest days of our lives.  We have stood and sat side-by-side during extremely painful court dates. We have lost some friends along the way and gained many new ones.  Auburn won a National Championship, and has lost plenty of games since.  We have both experienced promotions and new careers.  We have dealt with snow storms, tornadoes hurricanes and much much more...but come what may, we are two of the luckiest people in the world.


Happy Friday, y'all!

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