Post by Jessica of Smartter Each Day.
Stacy asked if I wanted to share my and my husband’s love story with you all this week. I was excited to share our story, because I think it’s a pretty good one, if I do say so myself.
When I tell it, it starts out like a lot of other “how we met” stories. When I was in college, I met a wonderful, handsome man and fell deeply in love. We got engaged, booked a honeymoon, asked our best man and maid of honor…I bought a beautiful wedding dress…You get the picture.
But the only thing is…I didn’t marry that guy! I married the best man!
Shucks. Now I’ve gone and spoiled the story at the beginning! I just get so excited about that part. Not that I watch them, but I’ve heard our story sounds like a soap opera. That makes me feel extremely elite and glamorous, so I’ll take it.
As far as how in the world I ended up with the best man and not the groom…
When I tell you this part, let’s pretend we’re having coffee. At a coffee shop. With no children around. (Even random crying ones in the background.) Can we all pretend that? I haven’t been to one of those places in a really long time, but I hear they still exist.
Anyway, after I told you that part about marrying the best man, you might have some questions. Let’s pretend you ask your questions, and I’ll answer them.
Q: Jessica, you broke up with your fiancé and got married to his friend? That sounds really scandalous. Were you secretly dating two people? What kind of a girl are you, anyway?
A: Hey, watch with the insults! No, seriously. It wasn’t quite like that. Actually, I realized as I was dating fiancé #1 that he wouldn’t have made a very good husband for me. (If you want all the juicy details, I wrote them out in this post.) The gist is, we broke our engagement, and three very long, mature years later, I married fiancé #2, Todd. See? I’m not that scandalous.
Q: Did you secretly just love your husband (the real husband you actually married) the whole time? That would be so romantic.
A: Sigh. Yes, it would be. Here’s the thing. I always thought he was handsome. It was adorable that he played the guitar, and loved soccer, and I knew he loved Jesus. We’d been friends for so long, that I viewed him more as (Todd, don’t read this part) my – gasp – older brother or something? The relationship has evolved quite a bit, obviously. So don’t worry.
Q: As soon as you broke up with #1 fiance, did you start liking your husband? Tell us the juicy part. How did you fall in love?
A: Well, immediately after breaking my engagement, I actually thought the world was going to end, that I should quit college, and that I was never going to be happy again. Which just goes to show all of us that our over-dramatized emotions should not be trusted. I plan on reminding my teenage daughter that regularly, if I have one.
After about six months of being horribly broken-hearted, I got up enough nerve to graduate from college, moved back home to North Carolina, and became a teacher. Wouldn’t you know it, my old buddy Todd started hanging around. We went to football games and concerts and other fun things that single people do, that married people actually never do. It was a glorious time.
Q: So get to the good part! When did you fall in love?
A: Isn’t there a saying about a woman and jealousy? I can’t remember the whole thing, but it’s probably pretty true. Anyway, the thing is, I started getting jealous. My “good buddy” Todd had some other girl friends. One day, at a New Year’s Eve party, he was actually (brace yourselves) telling jokes and laughing with all of them. The nerve, y’all! I pouted all the way home.
It was at that point that I had to admit…I liked Todd. A lot.
This was weird, because he was my buddy. He was…Todd. And it was a little weird with our history and all, what with him originally planning to attend my wedding, and not be in it.
But, alas, love can’t be quenched. I realized pretty quickly this wouldn’t be a passing little crush. Todd and I complemented each other terrifically. We also sort of drive each other crazy, at times. But not too much.
Within a year of dating, we were married. Now shy of seven years later, we have two little boys and one more baby on the way. It’s a blissful, romantic paradise around here.
More or less. (But mostly less.)
I break things; he fixes them. I stress out; he takes things in stride. I worry; he makes me laugh. I love that he loves our little boys so much, that he listens to worship music when he washes the dishes, that he’s Mr. Optimistic and Cheerful when I’m all despondent and acting like Eyeore.
It’s a match arranged (slowly) in heaven.
So here the moral of the story. (I taught literature, so all the stories I tell have morals.) The moral is: Sometimes things look extremely bleak and hopeless, but they’ll get better. Sometimes the right thing takes time to find. And sometimes, God knows what you need more than you know what you need.
Oh, and if you’re curious, no, we don’t see Fiance #1 too much. He lives far away, but also, that would just be too weird. Right?
Does your love story have any unexpected twists? Anyone else out there marry the “best man”?