If there is going to be a way to characterise how we came to meet it would be through:
blasé attitude mixed with expectation
A situation where an agreement that we mutually wanted to expand our social networks and ‘just be friends’ was never going to be a reality.
Though we are so very different, the similarity of our circumstances was common ground that enabled long conversations, meaningful ones. Sharing our stories was a way of developing not only our friendship but gave us the confidence to begin to lower the walls we weren’t even entirely aware that surrounded our emotions, granting each other permission to explore the nature of our relationship further.
One area of discovery that helped foster, or at least allow the consideration, of a relationship was a shared appreciation for the heights of mid to late 80’s movies, for example “The Princess Bride”. Additionally, we both enjoyed sports, trivia, actual conversation and moving large amounts of furniture from one part of the country to another and back again…
Surprisingly we both completely compromised an initially deeply held restriction on how fast we were willing to invest with our friendship. That’s right, we met each other’s kids. Shortly followed by our kids meeting each other, crazy and frankly, perfect. The kids got along like a house on fire, Alastair suddenly had three boys to play with and Heidi two girls. It became so apparent that the pair of them were missing that connection and to suddenly find it made their worlds complete. At that first meeting each of the gender groups dispersed and settled into their own play and mutual discovery, leaving two discombobulated parents to enjoy each other’s company over a gratefully received coffee or two.
With the security of our children’s enjoyment in each other’s company from the first moment, this provided us with the opportunity to expand our capacity for each other’s company in new found ways. Combined family day trips and holidays were now possible. Having an extra parent made camping, an activity we both love, a not so scary proposition.
It was during one of these combined family trips that I, Jeremy, took a massive leap off the deep end of a comfortable situation and dropped the ‘L’ bomb on Kristy – something that seemed to take her by pleasant surprise. I, Kristy, have to say, we had only just made the milestone of being Facebook friends! It was shortly after this that somehow Jeremy’s home had an extra five people regularly on the doorstep and retreats to Millicent became more common place.
Somewhere in there, life still went on for us as parents. School routines undertaken, kids needed hugs, bed time stories were read and milos were shared over discussion of their personal challenges in life. Whilst this occurred relationship boundaries were discussed, disagreements occurred, bridges were built, and the relationship that we were both seeking came into clearer focus.
Things became, well, really real.
So it came to that point, where a man in order to be true to the one that he loves must make the ultimate sacrifice, his singlehood. That day was December 18th 2015 after Christmas carols at church, we were expecting fireworks but apparently the honouring of fire bans was more important than our engagement and so we had to settle for a lovely night on the church lawns with the kids, coffee and gelati.
We guess that brings us to now, the lead up to our wedding. Next… well that hasn’t happened yet, but hopefully it fulfils the cliché, happily ever after. (For a given value of happily anyway!)
Originally published on our wedding web site, January 2016.