It was 13 years ago today- February 25, 1995- that I was walking down the isle to marry my love, David. We had only known each other for 5 months. He was 22 and I was 19. He was from Chicago, Illinios, and had just joined the Marine Corps the previous April, and was in Alabama, where I lived, for Military Police training. I had been working at McDonald's as a Swing Manager, wondering where my life was going.
On a Saturday night in September of 1994, some friends and I had decided to go to a bar. This was a small country town and, remember, I was only 19, but I managed to get in. After a while, this marine came over and asked me to dance. He was cute, but I told him maybe I would dance later. A few hours later, I ran into that marine again and told him I would dance with him now. He told me his name was David. We sat and talked for a couple of hours, until my friends wanted to leave. He had come with some other marines. (If you don't know what young military men and women do on Saturday nights, they go to bars.) Before we parted ways, he had asked me to the Marine Corps Ball and to his parents house in Illinois for Thanksgiving. Gee, do you think it was love at first sight? He even called me a few hours after I got home that morning to ask me to go out with him later that day. (And, to apologize that he'd had a little too much to drink after I turned him down when he had asked me to dance!) We went to the history museum, and where else but, McDonald's. After all, David had been a swing manager, too, before joining the Corps.
I was wary of marines, Tough-love-em-and-leave-em. But, David was different. He was kind and sincere and I could tell he really cared about me. I went to the Marine Corps ball with him a few weeks later. We knew that we only had until Thanksgiving, and his training would be over, then, he would be sent off to his first duty station. We had planned that I would go to his parent's in Illinois with him for the week of Thanksgiving, then I would go back to Alabama, and we would get married maybe that next summer. We had a great week and I enjoyed meeting his family. And we found out that his first duty station would be Hawaii!
Our plans changed a bit when I found out I was pregnant. Pregnant? That was NOT part of my plans. David knew all along that I was pregnant, but I was in denial for two months and would not actually take a test. I didn't want full confirmation that it was the end of my life! So after Thanksgiving, David put me on a plane back to Alabama, and was terrified that he would never see me again. He thought I would run from him- he wasn't sure what I'd do. After he got settled in Hawaii at the beginning of December, he told his parents that I was pregnant. They were incredibly supportive and ready to help. I finally took a test and comfirmed it. I went to the doctor. I began to accept it. We decided that we'd move the wedding up to February. He'd fly back to Alabama for two weeks and we'd get married there. My semi-depressive state ended and I planned a little wedding and started planning for a little baby. I set the wedding for February 25th (little did I know It was his sister's birthday- Happy Birthday Cassandra! I literally didn't find out until the morning of the wedding when David says, "Hey, it's my sister's birthday today.")
David flew back to Alabama and stayed for two weeks. We got married and had a little honeymoon in the Smokey Mountains. (There's a funny story for another post.) and then he flew back to Hawaii. He had to find us a place to live and I had to tie up some loose ends, so I didn't move to Hawaii until April 12th. He would always joke that he was giving me a three year honeymoon in Hawaii!
So, here we are thirteen years and seven kids later. Obviously, it wasn't the end of my life. It was the beginning of a wonderful journey that God was taking me on. David was a Christian, and although he was definately not living as he should at the time, he prayed earnestly for me. I did give my life to Jesus the following August. Praise God that he used our sin for His greater plan. And praise God that His plan is so much more awesome than what I though I wanted- or didn't want as the case may be. I'm still madly in love with this man, who always tells me what a great wife I am, and what a wonderful job I'm doing, and how beautiful I am. We've been through so much in our 13 years together.
Happy Anniversary David, you are the love of my life!!!