Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Three years...

I wanted to write a little something to celebrate my third wedding anniversary. That’s right… although it seems like Pat and I have been married for many years (No offense honey, but we’ve crammed a lifetime of things into a short time frame), we’ve actually only been married since 2006.
Three years ago today, Pat and I were married in a small wedding chapel in Eureka Springs, AR. In fact, the chapel was so small that we could only have 10 guests … and if memory serves me correctly that included the photographer.
Pat and I met at the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, but it took me more than six months to go out with him. He asked me out for “a burger and a beer” right after I started dating someone else and it took me months after that relationship ended to convince myself to give Pat a chance.
I thought to myself “What would happen if the relationship went south and we had to see each other at the office?” I knew of several interoffice relationships over the years and watched how weird it was to see past lovers try to remain civil in the workplace.
It took a trip home to Georgia over Christmas 2005 (and a handful of people) to convince me that I should give Pat a chance. So I rang in 2006 at a friend’s house and went home to send Pat an email… if he was still interested in going out sometime to let me know.
It took several days to get a response and I thought my fear of weirdness in the workplace would happen before we went on a first date.
But at last I got a response… he had been out of town having his own New Year’s celebration and had just read my email.
Our first date was Jan. 11… we met for lunch in Fayetteville. I can’t remember the name of the restaurant at the moment or what type of sandwich I ate, but I do remember we were two 30-somethings acting like teenagers (don’t get any dirty thoughts in your head – we were nervous).
That first date led to another and another and before we knew it we were spending time together every day… if Pat was off I would join him after work or he would stop by my apartment (which was across the street from the newspaper) on the nights he worked.
It didn’t take me long to realize Pat was the man I wanted to spend my life with… he was kind and funny, hard-headed and exasperating at times, but he loved me more than I have ever been loved before. The funny thing was that I felt the same way about him and I knew it within a few weeks of our first date.
If anyone else had described this scenario to me before my marriage I would have wished him or her luck and wondered when the divorce papers would be filed. I’m still certain there was a betting pool in our office on how long our marriage would last and when the baby was due.
I didn’t think it was possible to know someone for only a short period of time and feel like you’ve known them forever. But I’ve always thought our quick courtship worked because Pat and I had already played the dating game and were both ready to settle down and start a family of our own.
We had the shortest courtship of anyone I’ve known… we dated less than two months before he asked me to marry him. I planned my wedding in just weeks on a shoestring budget and we moved in together two weeks before the ceremony.
The people at our wedding were Pat’s stepson Jamie, my good friend, Angel and several wonderful women (Michelle, Melissa, Liz and Laurie) that we worked with. Our families, who lived out of state, celebrated with us in the weeks and months to come.
In these last three years we’ve had two beautiful children and moved across country to be closer to our families. I dare say we love each other more today than we did on the day we married… and together we have the best two gifts one can give another – human life.
In 2007, Pat took a job at a smaller newspaper and I gave up my career to take care of our children. But we’ve found happiness in each other and our little house on the hill in Ruckersville. Our children, Savannah and Julius, are the lights of our lives.
In this time of economic downturn it would be easy to let stress come between us. I won’t lie and say things are always stress-free, but compared to other marriages I know of things in the Fitzgerald house are simple (and very happy) indeed.
I could tell you all of the things I love about Pat, but if you’ve made it this far into my note than I won’t force you to read much more (and those of you who know me have heard all of it enough).
We have each other and two healthy, beautiful children and our life is good.
What more can a woman ask for?
Happy 3rd Anniversary Hubby… I love ys.


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