Valentines Day is here and my own love story started out a little bumpy I might say as and as does most things in life, at least for me. You see, the way I grew up with my experiences definitely helped to later define who I am as an adult. I don’t remember my parents being together…they were divorced when I was two and as a child they went through a nasty custody battle which lasted for years while my brother and I lived with my grandmother(otherwise known as my other mom). Needless to say both of my parents never had kind words to say to or about one another. In high school I was in a “serious” (or at least I thought at the time) relationship that lasted for five years. This literally took me into my young adulthood and left me pretty darn jaded. After being cheated on repeatedly by your first “True Love”, I guess this was bound to happen. The point is that I never wanted to or even thought about getting married….which is why after five years of my first real relationship, the cheating wasn’t why we eventually broke things off. I realized we were never going to get married. This epiphany came to me ironically while shopping in a grocery store together while on the cereal aisle. I realized at that point in my young life(age 20) that I honestly did not want to ever get married. I was adamant about it.
In college down in San Diego I went through a series of relationships but nothing really serious.
That is until I met someone who I thought was a game changer…well game changing enough for a label of girlfriend/boyfriend. That is until after six months, he cheated. Well not too sure why this was a pattern for me but after my high school relationship, I sure got the hell out of that one fast. Lesson learned.
After these experiences of having my heart pulled out of my chest and stampeded on, I was not too open anymore to the idea of love. Maybe that is why when it came looking for me I was unknowlingly ready. Josh and I met down in San Diego when I was working at the Mission Valley Skatepark and Josh would skateboard down there. I had some black and white photos taken that needed to be developed(yes the days of film). Somehow through casual conversation a mutual acquaintance mentioned to me that Josh worked at a pro photo lab. I approached him with getting these developed and jokingly said hey I’ll take you out for a drink. Well he developed my film for me and did hit me up for that drink. The first time we hung out we were endlessly laughing and having a ridiculously good time. We ended up hanging out more and more and I of course was always prodding him to bring his cameras. We explored San Diego together with cameras in hand and there was no pressure and we were just friends.
Neither of us wanted a relationship at all but we did finally go on a real date. Everything with Josh was just easy for me…easy to be completely who I am and it was just effortless. After dating for about three months, and during my finals as a senior at SDSU, I got a call that my father had passed away. Josh was with me when that call came in. I think I was too shocked to cry when it happened and just immediately headed to the beach….to listen to the sounds of the ocean to help quiet the noise inside my head and to help drown out my pain. Josh didn’t even really have to say a word…he was just there. Being with him during this hard time in my life even after such a small time I had learned he was pretty much different from any guy I had ever dated before. Josh was and still is truly the guy that will give you the shirt off his back and help anyone in need.
Literally a few weeks after my dad passed, I went to Alaska for a summer internship and asked Josh if he would take care of my two dogs & house for me while I was away. I for sure did not want to lose my place by the beach let alone its coveted private off street parking space. Thankfully, he obliged. While I was in Alaska I had a lot of time to think and to reflect. I wrote in my journal a lot while there and poured out to my soul to the earth and sky. This is when after only dating Josh for a few months that I realized that this was the guy I was going to marry. Just like that. I wrote it in my journal even as if to document what I couldn’t believe I was thinking. Here my whole life I never wanted to get married and after a few months of dating Josh, I just knew he was the one for me. Love came knocking on my door when I was the least ready or prepared. So crazy how this works sometimes and we were married just a few years later.
Today marks 14 years since we had our first “real date” at an Olive Garden in San Diego….yes college days were fancy with our dining choices:-) I am a lucky girl to have someone who believes in me without fail and two beautiful kids later, we are still in love. We are beyond lucky to share our world together and to witness and capture true love through our cameras. I now believe in the beauty of true love and know without a doubt that it exists. Thank you Josh for restoring my faith in love.
Happy Valentines Day to all you Lovers out There!!