It all started 24 years ago . . .
- Last updated on January 17, 2012 at 10:30 am
- 11 comments
24 years ago Eddie and I met when my brother brought him into our family. Eddie was down on his luck after having recently lost his mother. My parents welcomed him into our family home. He was 21 at the time. I was 22 and had just moved back "home" while I was between apartment leases. Our rooms were directly across the hall from one another but our schedules rarely meshed so we didn't see each other often. When we did though we got along wonderfully. We could be ourselves; say whatever was on our minds; be goofy; and spend time with each other without trying to be someone that we weren't. Over time we got to be really good friends despite our rare opportunities to hang out together. He had a long time girlfriend and I was engaged to a man who was away serving in the military. Nothing inappropriate ever happened. Eddie became an extension of my family.
In 1989, he joined the Navy and received orders to the same ship my then husband was stationed aboard. Eddie spent a little time with us that summer but later in the fall my exhusband and I were stationed elsewhere. My parents stayed in touch with Eddie until their retirement in 1999. I'm sorry to say that I didn't do such a great job of keeping in touch: babies, marriage, school, etc kept me busy. During that time Eddie married, as well.
Fast forward 21 years - I was going through a divorce and Eddie was separating from his wife when my brother mentioned that he had caught up with Eddie . . . who lived three states away. Eddie and I started emailing which led to the occasional phone call then ultimately to him driving down for a visit. Seeing him once was enough for me to know that he was the man that I wished 23 years earlier that we had pushed for more. Our connection was immediate - even before we saw each other in person. It was as though time didn't exist. We immediately slipped back into our old, familiar and comfortable relationship . . . but the oddest thing was that we each got butterflies when we emailed, spoke or saw each other.
About six months into our renewed relationship, I told him that no way I was going to fall in love with him. His response was that I would have to stop being "me" in order for him to stop loving me. He already loved me! I was touched but not sold. That took a few more months . . . due to changes in my life I ended up moving to live closer to Eddie. For a year we were together as best friends, confidants and companions. We were not only IN love with one another we also truly loved and appreciated one another. In May he gave me a beautiful sapphire and diamond "promise ring" because even though we knew we would be together forever - neither of us were ready to get married.
The rest is history. In November we moved into a beautiful condo in downtown Memphis and on Christmas Eve - in front of ALL of my family and in the middle of our "dirty Santa" gift game - he gave a beautiful speech about how my family saved his life 24 years ago and by doing that they brought me into his life. He said I am his best friend and that he loved me with all of his heart. THEN he got down on one knee and proposed using a ring he had made using my sapphire and a pair of diamond earrings he bought me last Valentines day.
The idea for the ring was mine but I didn't know it was coming. I wanted a ring that had sentimental value. He wanted to buy a new diamond. I don't wear a lot of jewlery so combining the two would be perfect. The ring is amazing! I love it but I love him more!
Eddie and I in Memphis a year ago:
My engagement ring. The sapphire is from my "promise ring" and the diamonds on either side are from a pair of earrings that Eddie bought me for Valentines day last year.
This is what my wedding ring wrap with look like with my e-ring. Stunning! Ed did great!
Photos from Eddies proposal . . . he'll probably have a fit that I'm posting these (he's a little vain) but I'm happy and couldn't be more thrilled!