Five years ago, I married my soul mate. It doesn’t seem possible. Together for almost 15 years – WOW! Our story seems like a fairy tale…
Rob and I had what some many call a “unique” love story. Hang in there if you have already heard this…
We dated the summer before High School. From two different schools – he was Neptune and I was Ocean Township. Two competitive schools from very different backgrounds. We didn’t care because we were happy until school started. I made new friends, joined clubs and found what I thought was a “new interest”. So, I ended our summer romance.
Fast forward 30 years to July 2000. Rob is driving in the Monmouth/Ocean County area and saw a roadside tribute that said “HOPE”. He wanted to make sure that it wasn’t me. Really??? Well, he spent about a year hunting me down. I get a note in the mail with an email address in July 2001. A little skeptical but I sent an email and as they say – the rest is history.
In October 2001, after 4 months of emailing, Rob drove to Atlantic County to visit me at a craft show. I didn’t want a relationship. I was content for it to be “Belinda and I” till she went to college. He was divorced and wasn’t looking either. We agreed to be friends.
Rob spent that day with me selling our hand made American Girl doll clothes. He helped me pack up and we went back to my house for dinner. We spent hours just talking and reconnecting. He even showed me a picture of me that he kept all these years. Over the next 5 years, Rob traveled to EHT to spend his days off with us. He went to cheering competitions, sat through practices, and went to craft shows. I am not sure when but we realized that God had brought us together for a reason…. to be a family.
Our second Christmas, Rob proposed! Yes, we were engaged for almost 9 years before we got married. He was concerned about Belinda. He didn’t want to change her life – high school, a competitive cheerleader, active in church and EHT was the only home she had ever known. She is the daughter that he never had.
When Belinda left for college, I sold our home in EHT and moved to Brick. Not an easy move for Miss Independence. I had been in my own home for about 20 plus years and had built a life there.
Our wedding day was beautiful surrounded by family and close friends. It started off a little shaky – Pastor got stuck in traffic. Then my Mom was running late because of traffic. Who would have thought that my daughter would be the picture of calm as my Maid of Honor. I was a tad nervous. Really, I was!!!
As I walked down the aisle, the reality hit. This was really happening – I was getting married. I almost passed out and the pictures show the slight look of panic. It passed as I saw Rob, just as nervous standing with Pastor and Belinda smiling at me. It was an amazing day – the weather was beautiful, our families were there and we got to celebrate with those that meant the most to us.
The last five years have been filled with tears of happiness and sadness. We have learned the meaning of “in sickness and in health“. We have learned the art of compromise. We have had our rough spots but we have worked through them. Rob’s unconditional love has helped me to grow as a wife, a mom and a person. We are definitely opposites but we do compliment each other – opposites attract, right?
There is nothing that I would different and if Rob asked me again, I would marry him in a heartbeat.
Thank you for being there through the good times and the bad. Thank you for loving me when I didn’t love myself. Thank you for being my solid rock when I am ready to roll down the cliff. Thank you for being my cheerleader when I think I can’t go on any longer. I love you more than words can say and I can’t imagine what my life would be like without you.