Sunday is a big day for all of the moms out there. It is a great way to celebrate all of the things (big and small) that moms do for their children. I like to take advantage of this day by requesting a long nap and uninterrupted viewing of the Lifetime Movie Network. ****yup, I like that channel…is that a problem?****
As great as it is taking advantage of this special day, I feel a responsibility to acknowledge my husband’s part in helping me to become a mom. After all, I couldn’t have done it without his help.
As I was trying to figure out what to blog about, I thought about my husband. What a great dad he is. What a super husband he is. How he helps me be a better mom.
So I had a thought: how did it all begin? It’s not like I was born and knew that I would marry *Francis. I had a journey. He had a journey.
But when our journeys collided, our story began.
It all began back in May 1999. I had just left college, about to begin student teaching, and had recently ended a relationship. Francis had been out of college for a few years and had also just ended a long-term relationship. Our (amazing) university has an outstanding former student population and one of the local alum clubs held a happy hour at an area bar.
Yes, I said bar. My husband and I met in a bar.
I was sitting at a table with my friend and a high school friend approached us with her boyfriend and another guy. All five of us had attended the same high school and discussed people we knew. Our mutual friend nudged me and whispered, “he’s Catholic”. To a cradle Catholic like me, that was a plus. The only problem was that Francis obviously had no interest in me (he will deny this if you ask him). After a few minutes of uncomfortable conversation, we went our separate ways. I told my friend that Francis was a jerk and I couldn’t believe how rude he was to me. I may have used another choice word to describe him, but we can just forget about that.
For me, that was it. I just knew that I would never see my high school buddy nor Francis ever again. And I didn’t…until two days later. My friend convinced me to go out with her, her boyfriend, and Francis. I agreed. And I actually had a good time. Of course, Francis was extremely skilled at the art of flirting. My favorite memory of that night is when we were sitting in a booth and he needed to get up. He tapped me on the shoulder and said (wait for it…), “excuse me, I need to use the restroom”.
See what he did there? He was flirting.
But the night really was great. That was the first time that I saw what a great guy he was. He was funny, charming, and kind. He had the best dimples and the prettiest eyes. And he smelled great.
As the summer went on, Francis and I got to know each other a lot better. We had attended the same elementary, middle, high school, and college. But we had never met. He knew my sister and she knew him, but we didn’t know each other. Our mothers even worked together at our middle school. My mom likes to share the story of how she once saw Francis beg his mother for change so that he could buy something from the vending machine. We were both raised Catholic and were from large families. Our parents were from New York. We each had 6 nieces and nephews (at the time).
We were meant to be.
It took a while (see: flirting technique described above), but after about 3 months of getting to know each other Francis finally asked me out. We went to see Bob Schneider play at a local venue. It was so easy. So effortless. I already knew him so well. I didn’t have to pretend who I was or act a certain way. It was that night that I knew Francis was the one. I didn’t have to search for Mr. Right any longer. He was right in front of me.
He was mine.
After a quick 3 1/2 month courtship, we were engaged and were married a year later.
About a year after that, the most amazing thing happened: this man. This man who I had fallen in love with and who I had promised to love forever. This man who I had dreamed about my entire life but who I had known for less than three years. This man gave me the greatest gift: he helped me become a mother.
And when that baby girl was born, every dream that I had ever dreamed had come true.
I thank God for making that dream come true.
And I thank my husband for making that dream come true.
So this Mother’s Day, I will not only relish in the quiet of my made for tv movies, but I will remember my Francis. When we met, how we connected, and why we fell in love.
* His name has been changed in order to protect whatever ounce of self respect he still has after being married to me for over 13 years. 😉