Monday, 2 April 2018

The 11 year story.

I've never really shared Rob and my "story" before, but in just a few days we will actually be celebrating 11 years together and sitting on Facebook and looking through all my past photos I felt compelled to write about us.

If there was ever a story of true love I think this is it. If there was ever a story about following the right path, this is it. And if there were ever a story about how life often runs on God's time and not your own, well, this is definitely a sign that a greater being could have had a hand in our story. 

I knew about Rob when I was a young teen. probably 13/14 and I say 'knew' because he is the son of the choir mistress at our church. I can't say I have huge recollection of seeing him that often but because of our family involvement in the church our paths crossed. However, I didn't speak to him for ages and it wasn't until we, as a family, went to his family's for dinner one year that I suppose we were all properly introduced. I remember that moment like it was yesterday. I was smitten. Completely and utterly and that crush went on for years. We didn't go to the same schools, had no other connection other than church and he wasn't regularly there. I noticed when he was there, but life for both of us carried on. When I was 16 at college, I remember going up to Tesco one day {where he worked} and he served me and my friends at a till. He probably doesn't even remember but my friends, who then confirmed his cuteness, renamed him 'Fit Tesco Boy' {so grown up} and that stuck for a while, and occasionally I would see him and think it. Life continued and even though we had a few encounters through family parties there was still not really any opportunity to meet or even develop a friendship. Round the family dinner table his name was always the one I was teased about and I suppose in a teenage way, I thought he was the dream. I then had a relationship and he was in one for a really long time and when we met within those times it was just as acquaintances and I suppose, in a way, I knew his mum more through church youth groups and I therefore knew him in that way.
I remember, being single at 19 and my mum coming home to tell me that she had seen Theresa {Rob's mum} and that Rob and his girlfriend had broken up. We exchanged our shock, they seemed in it for the long haul, and in a way I just forgot about it. Let's be realistic, he was my teenage crush and way out of my league; I mean he was a drummer in a cool band who we had even seen perform a few times and we had had no real relationship, he was just kind and patient with a couple of teenagers who his mum entertained.
It wasn't until a moment in life that we were brought together in a way that can only have been guided by a greater power. As a family we had always thrown big 18th birthday parties at my mum and dad's. All their friends and ours got together for a feast and it was my brother's 18th around the 23rd March and I was a 19 year old being faced with a house full of my brother's friends, who inadvertently became my ex-friends due to the fact that they all got on with my ex-boyfriend {who was there} better and wanted to be all in a group together. I got over that fact as I knew it would come to that and as they were all off together doing their thing, I remember walking into the kitchen and seeing Chris; Rob's dad as I headed through the door. Not a strange sight, they had been to most of our family parties, but as I turned into the group to say hello I saw Rob, standing there, who had come along as he'd had nothing else to do and his best offer that night was to out to an 18th birthday party with his parents. Rob's mum has always said that as soon as she saw me that night, at that moment of seeing him she knew that the relationship was changed for ever. I think my confidence had grown over time and saying hi to Rob seemed easy. I remember just feeling completely confident in my want to start up a conversation with him and the conversation didn't stop until he walked out the door that night. Looking back I really clearly remember us sitting on the stairs talking and talking about so much. My "friends" kept trying to pull me away and I remember realising that I didn't want to be with anyone else, at all, ever again. I had forgotten all about by teenage crush days and right there and then we swapped numbers. I remember at the end of the party when most of the other people had gone, we sat down with my parents and a few others that were left drinking tea, he went to get himself a cup, but as it had been sometime the tea had gone cold and rather than asking me or anyone he sat and drank a cold cup of tea, pretending it was hot as we continued to chat. The night ended, a week past and I didn't hear anything. Maybe I was just living on cloud nine but by the time it got to the following Sunday imagine my surprise at seeing Rob, who had just stopped attending church years before, was there, with his parents. I knew it, from that point, it was too much of a coincidence and as he came over and asked why I hadn't replied to any message he had sent. I felt like a small child, turning redder in embarrassment of mixed phone numbers and the fact that I missed out on developing any kind of relationship with this boy.
Needless to say, I think Rob has been back to mass every Sunday since that very day and within days we were on our first official date, which of course was super casual drinks as friends and it wasn't a date! 
A few days after that we were out again and this time Rob picked me up from home. We went to see '300' at the cinema and then went to a local village to sit by a stream {the same spot where he proposed 2 years later} and then when it was too cold, we sat in the car and talked til 5.30 in the morning about everything. OK, maybe we kissed, and I know that every being within couldn't believe I was kissing fit Tesco boy. To this day I still get those emotions. My teenage crush, he appeared to be mine!
I remember getting home to a mother and father who were less than impressed by my teenage antics and after heading to bed, and not sleeping at all I think I smiled the biggest smile the entire day. I remember I went shopping with mum and she caught me smiling and she just looked at me, like she knew. She knew exactly what I was feeling; pure happiness. I was quickly in love, however I was good at not saying it. I just held onto it and let the relationship take its course. Within a short amount of time I had a declaration from Rob, we were incredibly happy and so well suited. It was like we needed to both learn a thing or two about ourselves before we found each other. Our familiarity though meant that heading into a relationship, everything just worked. Our parents already knew one another. We had common ground and my massive catholic family didn't scare him off. He suited my friendship group perfectly and was often surrounded by 5 girls who enjoyed his company as much as I did. His friends were wild and crazy but so fun and welcomed me in and made our relationship totally normal.
It wasn't that long really before marriage came up. We were dead sure, certain in fact that we were going to get married and just over three years later we did. Rob was now an electrician and I was a teaching assistant and we received the keys to our house 2 weeks before we got married. We had about 10 days to paint the kitchen, hallway, bathroom and bedroom of a dirty, repossessed ex-council house. I cried a lot. But with the help of family and my good friend Natalie we turned the space into something perfect. It was our space and in reality it didn't matter and when he carried me over that threshold on our wedding night we knew our real journey had begun. That was it. The first night we spent in our house at the age of 21 and 25. We started our married journey together here and in July we will have spent 9 years here.
We have carried two children through that same door, not to mention countless bags of shopping, rubbish, furniture, paint tubs and all of what life has given us. That same door step has seen it all for us, all the coming and going. From that first moment that it became the Inman's, and I mean truly ours, was the moment that we together became a whole unit.
11 years. It seems crazy. I graduated and he was there to watch. I changed jobs and careers and he was there to guide me. I lost myself and he brought me back from the dark. He is my constant. And the last 11 years would have been no fun without him.

Here is us through the years:


1 comment

  1. Thank you for sharing a truly beautiful journey with us.
    For sure it could be a movie plot, actually I am sure I have watched similar.
    True love always finds its path.
    Gorgeous photos. You both look so young and happy.
    Here is to the next 11 xx


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