There was this time at church camp…this cute 13 year old Va. skater dude (the one with the long bangs on one side and whip lash from flinging them out of his eyes over and over) met this crazy girl from Ohio.
The second I saw him I smacked my girlfriend on the arm and pointed him out. “See that boy over there? I am going to marry him one day!” Of course she laughed and brought up the fact that at the age of 15 I had never, so much as, kissed a boy or had a boyfriend. I was the girl who had no desire to have a boyfriend or ever get married. After years of watching my parents terrible relationship I just couldn’t figure out why anyone in there right mind would ever want to be married.
But there he was. This kid that made my heart go nuts and my palms go sweaty (although it was Va in July so the sweaty hands may have just been the outrageous heat?) I can remember being mortified at my crazy, curly, frizzy hair in the crazy humidity. I was however not shy. I promptly asked the fellas standing next to me if they knew him. It was my lucky day. Bill and James (who we had also just met) called him over and introduced us all. As teenagers do, we all stood in a circle and gabbed for a bit. Of course the only person I saw was Daryl and we only had about 15 minutes before we all had to break off and go to our camps for dinner.
That evening he plagued my every thought. My focus was gone, not that I had much focus to begin with. He was like a drug. I had to have more time with him. We all woke up so early the next day and went off to find the boys. All of my girlfriends found the boys again and within hours everyone had paired up with their “camp boyfriends”. Except me. I was still looking for Daryl. My girlfriends were stumped, never having seen me like this before. I was born independent though and simply spent the next two days by myself hunting for this boy all over this huge camp. On the third day I sat down on a picnic table in a sulk that only a 15 year old girl can really pull off. Then it happened…Daryl plops down beside me and says “Where have you been? I have been looking for you for 3 days!”
That was it…all she wrote. Ok well maybe that was just the beginning of what she wrote. The book continues for over 20 years. An amazing love story with more twists and turns than any roller coaster. The one thing I know for sure was that I owe destiny/God/Karma, call it what you will, a big thank you.
Not sure what I did to deserve Daryl. I have often joked that God felt guilty about my childhood and said “you have paid your dues…here, have a happily ever after!” The way we act you would think our life has been easy but it has been just as hard if not harder than most of our friends. We have been through so much over the years! But always fighting the world together. Job losses (notice this is plural), many deaths and huge losses, worked our butts off to get at least one of us through college, babies and illnesses. Basically the typical life stuff. I can’t imagine what life would have been like to go through any of it without him. He is my best friend and still gives me butterflies everytime we kiss. Very few can still say that after so many years.
Fighting…well I suppose even we fight from time to time but it has never been the “normal fighting”. We have never gone to bed a single night mad at each other and normally we end up laughing about it. I can barely remember my life “before Daryl”. I have lived longer with him, than without him. One day I know we will no longer be together. One of us will more than likely die before the other and I can honestly bring myself to tears just thinking about the day one of us will leave the other. I have always said that I would take any amount of time we had together, no matter how long or short. Who knew all these years together would fly right by and truly only feel like a few minutes? If only I had known I would have taken more pictures…even though I have thousands. Is there such a thing as “too many”? I don’t think that is possible?
Today is, as I am sure you have guessed, our 13th wedding anniversary. Three years after we walked down the isle we spent our wedding anniversary in labor and delivery having Adam. We had fought to have a baby for 3 very long, heartbreaking years. The end result was this little guy who totally stole our hearts and our wedding anniversary. He was our second miracle…the first being that we had even met in the first place. When life is good it can be VERY good.
Happy anniversary Daryl, the one person in this world who has always “got me” figured out (no easy task). Not to mention puts up with me. I am convinced there is no love story greater than ours. But I may be a bit biased 😉
Happy birthday to Adam, the sweetest boy I have ever met. Just like his father, what more can a mother ask for? Watching you grow into a young man is absolutely the most heartbreaking and rewarding thing I have ever done. If I could make you stop growing I would….but I can’t so I will continue to be proud of the sweet, kind boy you are and the amazing young man you are continuing to grow into. Just always remember it is always “cool” to still give your old mom a kiss and hug goodnight and every now and then hold her hand. Never too old…never.