21 February 2012

The History of My Valentine & Me ~ Part 3

When I started telling our story last week I had no idea it would actually take this many posts, but I guess it's unrealistic to expect 10 years to fit into just a few hundred words. Be sure to check out Part 1 and Part 2 from last week!

Jake was planning a trip home to Florida (he had moved to Saint Louis, MO while I was in Mexico) in May 2007. I was also making a trip home, but not until June. I told him we would just miss each other and we both were disappointed that we wouldn't be able to catch up in person.

Then the unthinkable happened. He changed his plans to match mine.I knew he was serious then. Jake never changed plans for anyone, he did what he wanted when he wanted and everyone worked around him (and we wonder where our 3 year-old gets it from).

I was home for a few days before he got into town. My house was the first place he came and we saw each other for the first time in two years. It was definitely interesting seeing him in person rather than just talking on the phone.

And then we fit years into days. His friends reminded him of all the reasons he had for not dating or marrying me in the past. We went on a date, walked on the beach, and looked at wedding venues.

He asked my dad for my hand.

Then he and my family took me to the airport and I went home to Mexico. To say the next 6 weeks were a blur would be an understatement. I tied up all my loose ends, transported myself and my cat back to Florida for 2 weeks to plan the wedding and then took a week traveling to see my extended family before finally ending up in St. Louis.

I stayed with a family that was friends with Jake until close to the wedding. Everyone that he knew up there was practically in shock. They hadn't even knew I existed until 4 months before I arrived. And apparently he had several not-so-secret-admirers who were less than thrilled at my arrival.

To make matters more complicated I wouldn't let him call me his fiancee. He'd asked my dad, but he hadn't actually proposed. And until he actually asked I wasn't labeling myself. In his defense, the reason he hadn't asked was because he wanted my input on my ring and didn't want to ask without the ring. (I couldn't convince him that while I'd love the ring when he proposed, the ring wouldn't change my answer.)

As a side note: I would never advise anyone to move to another country, a place where you have no friends, no family, work on rekindling and developing a relationship with someone, even if you know you love them. Take it in stages. The reverse culture shock, getting over past hurts in our relationship, me finding a job, Jake changing jobs, and planning a long distance wedding and not stressors that should be trifled with!

And I've gone long winded again! I'll tell you how he proposed tomorrow, even knowing it was coming, I was totally surprised!


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