The picture above is me and Frank, a few months after we met and started dating. That was 7 years ago yesterday, August 7th.
I can't believe it has been that long already. I remember that day like it was yesterday. I relive it often in my mind. I was 17-years-old and fresh out of high school. I worked at the local movie theater, and stopped in to the restaurant next door, called Bonz, to stall some time before my shift and grab a snack. I hit it off with one of the waiters there, Joe, and realized that the waiter and I were kind of related in a round-a-bout way through marriage. This was in June. I had yet to meet Frank officially. I had seen him working out back in the kitchen while I was there talking to Joe and another friend of mine that worked there that I hit it off with, Des.
Fast forward to August of that same year. I was hanging out in Bonz yet again, waiting for my shift to start next door. Joe was working, and we were chatting and Frank was sitting at the other end of the bar, drinking a water and waiting for his own shift to start at the restaurant. When it was time for me to go to work, I went next door, only to be told by my boss that it had been slow that day, and to just take the afternoon off and come in for the evening. I didn't drive yet, and lived too far away from town to walk home, so I went back to Bonz. When Frank heard me tell Joe I didn't have to work until that evening, he asked me if I wanted to go see a movie with him. It was so random and caught me off guard, I was giddy with excitement. I was getting asked out on a date! My first real date, not from a boyfriend or anything, but a guy that found my cute and fun enough to hang out with further.
We went next door to the movie theater and enjoyed the new Charlie and the Chocolate Factory movie that had just come out. We shared an extra large Pepsi and had a nice time. Afterwards I went back over to Bonz with Frank, and he gave me a hug and thanked me for going to the movie with him, and then went inside to start his shift for that night.
From that day of, we were practically inseparable. We moved in together that December, when I turned 18. Things were rough off and on for the first few months. There was a lot of fighting, mostly due to Frank's addiction with alcohol. When I met him, he was on a downward spiral and on the path of destruction, and I truly feel that meeting me helped get him to the good place he is at today. He still struggles and falls off the wagon at times, so to speak, but he will never go back to that place he was at when we first met. Had we not met and started dating and hanging out, he would probably still be doing the same thing he was doing then. Working a minimum wage job, living in a friend's cabin rent free, and drinking a 30+ pack of beer a night, plus liquor. I feel a knot in my stomach when I think back to those months.
We were engaged 9 months after we met, and got married a few weeks after Frank proposed.
Even after we were married there were many times I thought we would not make it as far as we are today. We even separated and filed for divorce at one point, but we were able to pull things back together ans soon after we did, we found out we were expecting our first children together (after enduring 3 miscarriages previously).
I can't believe we can say we have been together for 7 years. I know to some people, it doesn't seem like a long time, but anyone that knows us, knows what a struggle and fight it has been just to get to this point, so it's very rewarding and special. I truly believe if we did not find each other at the moment that we found each other, our lives would be drastically different today, and I shudder to think where Frank would be today if he hadn't met me and changed most of his ways. He may not even be alive.
I am so thankful for Frank each and every day. Even when we have bad days, fights, disagreements....I am still thankful for him, because when things are good, they are very, very good, and the good definitely outweighs the bad.
I can't wait to see what the next 7 years has in store for us...