Wednesday, May 18, 2011

My Mother Met My Husband on the Internet!

10 years. Wow. That is all I can say. It goes by so fast. I am pretty sure that yesterday I was that bride waking up all doey eyed, getting ready to get married. Not really knowing or understanding all of the hard work that it would take to make our marriage great. I think I am still learning that lesson. But despite our mistakes and failures, I have been a part of something amazing for the last 10 years. We got married young, and we grew up together because of it. I am so proud to be his wife and I hope he knows that I am amazed at how God is using him to lead our family. So in honor of my 10 year anniversary to the man of my dreams, here is our story!

I was 14. That would have put me just entering the 9th grade. I had a "boyfriend" at the beginning of that year, but he had "dumped" me and left me pretty heartbroken. that was the year that AOL and the emerging chat room became popular. My mom had a friend in New York and they would often chat. The problem with public chat rooms is that anyone and everyone could and did go into them. It often meant it was hard to follow your own conversation and that there was a large amount of teenage vulgarity. So, logically, they moved into a less occupied room, the room dedicated to those who were British. That is where Karl comes in. One day, drunk (as is the culture in England. He through the grace of God has broken that habit though and no longer even touches alcohol), Karl "stumbles" in. Also, in the room is someone "hassling" my mom and her friend. Karl tells them to grow up and leave the room and there begins, under the watchful eye of my father, a sort of confidante relationship between Karl and my mom. Yes, I know, I know how that sounds. All I can say is that my mom and Karl were never inappropriate, she always emailed him in my parents bedroom so we could all easily read what they were saying, my dad was very aware of the emailing and always knew and had access to what they were saying, and it was usually advice and sometimes just general chit chat. Honest advice was what he was looking for and he got that in the anonymity of the internet. It was almost a penpal situation. As weird as it sounds, I believe with all my heart that my mom planted the seeds that would blossom into Karl's repentance and salvation.

So the years moved on, I turned 16 and for the first an only time, I spoke to Karl on the phone. It went something like "Hello?" "Mom, I can't understand a word he is saying" and I handed the phone back. He never really crossed my mind again, except when I wanted to use the internet and I couldn't because mom was on it!

My senior year my parents invited Karl to come see Texas and to watch me graduate. He couldn't make it to my graduation but he did make it that June for a 2 week visit. I had enlisted in the USAF and was busy with activities before I was supposed to head to boot camp. We really had minimal interaction. I remember him sneaking in a tickle here, brush on the arm there, but nothing that really screamed "I like you!". However, the night before he was to leave to go back to England that changed. That night, June 29th 2000, he told me he wanted to come back and see where things went. I can only imagine how his family must have felt, what they must have thought as he quit his job, sold his car and headed back to the US a week later. That August, I signed medical discharge papers (I hadn't even been to boot camp but had signed enlistment papers) for the USAF. My recruitment officer told me I would regret dropping out for a fling. I still want to find him and tell him how happy this fling turned out. About a week after he returned to the US he was saved in our church. About two weeks after that, he knelt down at Mesquite Community Park, with the ducks swimming in the pond behind us, and asked me to marry him. You can guess what I said!

The next 9 months were a whirlwind of me going to England to meet his family and wedding planning. On May 12, 2001 at 3pm we became husband and wife. He has since blessed me with 3 babies here with us and 1 in the arms of Jesus. He has grown so much over these last 10 years. I rest easy in our marriage because I know he is a leader and provider, but much more than that. He is my best friend and my love. I can not wait for the next 10 years with you dearest!

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