Nineteen Years and Counting

Nineteen years ago today Todd and I were married. It truly was one of the happiest days of my life. Two years before our wedding Todd had moved from Southern California to Arkansas where he had multitudes of aunts, uncles and cousins. At that time I was twenty and he was twenty-one and 1600 miles just seemed too far to maintain a relationship. So we broke up. However, we still wrote letters and talked on the phone weekly. He dated. I dated. We were both miserable.

Every time I got ready for a date I would wish it was Todd I was going out with. It was horrible. I finally decided I had to tell him we couldn’t go on like we were. Either we had a relationship or we didn’t. And if we didn’t I couldn’t talk to him anymore because it was too hard.

When the phone rang at its usual time I took a deep breath and answered, prepared to tell him what I had to. But before I had a chance he said, “I can’t take this any more. Will you move out here?” That filled me with bubbles of giddiness. Truly. Bubbles. Not just any bubbles. Giddy bubbles.

But as thrilled as I was at his unhappiness (I know that sounds awful, but that’s the truth of it), I wasn’t about to pull up stakes and move 1600 miles away from everything and everyone I knew. So six months after he moved I went to visit. I wanted to know if our feelings had been romanticized by the long distance or if they were the real thing.

They were, as it turns out, the real thing. So we got engaged with plans to marry the next summer when he was out of school. But I had a great job and was getting great experience and was trying to finish school myself. And I guess I freaked out a little. So we set the date for June 4, 1988.

A two year long distance romance is not something I would necessarily recommend. However, by the time we did get married we were as sure as you can be. We both knew this was exactly what we wanted.

Ah… So young, so in love… (This isn’t actually the picture I wanted to post. I hate to admit this – mostly because my mom reads this blog and now she’ll know – but I can’t find my wedding album. I know it’s around here somewhere in a box. And I don’t have an excuse for not finding it yet because we moved in a year ago yesterday. But I’m sad to say I haven’t finished unpacking. OH! But I did find the box of books I’ve been wanting for the last several months.)

It’s been a wonderful 19 years. Oh, we’ve hit a few bumps here and there, but nothing that any marriage doesn’t go through. Especially when you’re still growing up. LOL! And I’m looking forward to seeing what the next 19 years bring. I know when we got married I didn’t think I could love him any more. But I was wrong. So I wonder how I’ll feel about him in another 19 years.

Katie has a play off game tonight so we’ll be celebrating with hot dogs and sodas from the concession stand. It just doesn’t get more romantic than that. Someday when we have the time we’ll truly celebrate by going out to a nice dinner and just spending some time as us. I can’t wait!


  1. Jodi_Lee on June 4, 2007 at 6:48 pm

    Awwww…Jen! Happy Anniversary! You are such a beautiful bride and Todd kind of looks like Tom Selleck there…don’t ya think?? You two look totally 80’s and totally lovely!

  2. Monnik on June 4, 2007 at 7:42 pm

    Happy Anniversary Jen! What a great tribute to your marriage. Sounds like you have a great partnership.

  3. radioactive girl on June 4, 2007 at 8:41 pm

    Happy Anniversary! I love your story, and that you shared it!

  4. Jenster on June 4, 2007 at 9:14 pm

    Jodi – LOL!!! We started dated in 1984 – the height of Magnum P.I. Todd had his mustache and a Detroit Tiger’s hat and he was my Magnum. LOL!!!Monnik – Thank you. I think we do. :o)Radioactive Girl – Thanks!

  5. JenniferTX on June 4, 2007 at 9:57 pm

    Hey, Jen — major congratulations on 19 amazing years! And I agree that Todd was definitely channeling Magnum, PI back then. *grin* You know I think the world of both you and Todd, two people whom I’ve never met in person . . . but two people who are obviously very much in love and who inspire others in so many ways. Happy Anniversary, Jen and Todd! And here’s to many, many more years together!!Love,Jennifer

  6. Lori on June 4, 2007 at 10:54 pm

    Happy anniversary to you and Todd! Sounds like yo celebrate the way we do LOL. Enjoy!

  7. Katybug on June 4, 2007 at 11:11 pm

    Great story, Jen! And don’t feel bad about not finding your wedding album. You have your priorities in the right place. 😉 Besides, all I have are proofs…I never went back to get the album!!!! 🙁

  8. April on June 5, 2007 at 1:44 am

    Congratulation! You have nine more years of wisdom than me. I hope you are feeling better friend.

  9. April on June 5, 2007 at 1:46 am

    That should say Congratulations!!!!

  10. CindyS on June 5, 2007 at 4:42 am

    Woohoo!! Congrats on 19 years and I love that you both just knew and actually lived apart for so long – talk about taking life full on!I love the photo and at least your dog didn’t chew up the front half of your wedding album. Cody got ours this year and since my father painstakingly put it together (and I ain’t about to tell him what happened!) I quake in my sandals whenever I think of the poor cover!CindyS

  11. Stacy~ on June 5, 2007 at 7:22 am

    Oh you touched my heart with this story, Jen, just when I needed a good romance. Here’s to many, many more years together 🙂

  12. Boobless Brigade Master on June 5, 2007 at 9:03 am

    Congrats to the both of you!Just don’t hear of 19 year anniversaries like we used to.Gives hope to the rest of us!

  13. Jenster on June 5, 2007 at 9:24 am

    JenniferTX – You’re very sweet. :o) Channeling Tom Sellick, indeed!! LOLLori – Yeah. We really know how to commemorate the occasion!! LOLKatybug – You never got your album?? If you still have the proofs it’s not too late, is it?? April – Thank you (and I didn’t even catch the lack of an “s” – lol) And I AM feeling better! Thank you!!Cindy – Cody is much too cute to do something so dastardly! I don’t believe it!! LOLStacy – Thank you! :o)Boobless – It’s very sad that so many marriages fail before 19 years. What’s even more sad are the marriages that fail AFTER. I don’t get that because who wants to start over by then??

  14. Terri on June 5, 2007 at 11:38 am

    Congratulations! Your wedding is still one of the best I’ve ever attended, and the only one I can remember where the bride and groom enjoyed their reception and stayed longer than most of the guests! It was a great celebration and a great party.

  15. Jenster on June 5, 2007 at 1:08 pm

    Terri – It was fun, wasn’t it?? I don’t remember the actual wedding, but I do remember enjoying the reception. LOL

  16. Barb on June 5, 2007 at 4:19 pm

    Our daughter is finally getting married after 3 years of a long distance relationship. Glad to know they turn out so well!

  17. jenn on June 5, 2007 at 4:42 pm

    happy anniversary! it’s so nice to see couples who’ve stayed the course no matter the odds. this is very calming for a bride-to-be with all but 38 days left until i say ‘i do.’thank you & congratulations!

  18. Bookwormom on June 5, 2007 at 7:50 pm


  19. Jenster on June 5, 2007 at 8:12 pm

    Barb – As difficult as it is there are some benefits.Jenn – 38 days will go by in a flash and then you’ll be blissfully wedded and in 19 years you can post about it. :o)Amanda – Thanks!

  20. Jen on June 5, 2007 at 10:31 pm

    Congrats to you and Todd! Such a cute couple. I am always shocked at now much I have changed when I look at my wedding photos – which I do not know the *exact* location of at this moment either. 🙂

  21. Manic Mom on June 5, 2007 at 11:02 pm

    Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!Beautiful post! Happy 19 years!

  22. Jenster on June 6, 2007 at 8:35 am

    Jen – Thanks for making me feel better. LOLManic – Thank you. :o)

  23. Sandy on June 6, 2007 at 6:07 pm

    Hey, I haven’t visited you for a while. Fun to catch up.Our 16th anniversary is this Friday. Great wedding pix!SandyFor Reluctant Entertainers

  24. Jenster on June 6, 2007 at 10:01 pm

    Hey Sandy! June was a good month, wasn’t it!! LOL Happy anniversary to you!

  25. Anonymous on June 8, 2007 at 10:21 am

    Hello All:I have not posted any comments to my dear, sweet wife’s blog in a long time….don’t really have to because I actually live it :-)I can honestly say that I cannot imagine my life without Jen. God put us together for a reason and together we shall stay!! She is a blessing to me and the kids….and all she comes in contact with. We have had difficulties, not so much with our relationship, but with things that have happened during that time (HELLO….the last two years!!!!!). The struggles we have been through have only strengthened our relationship with God and each other.Jen is a very special person…..but I am sure you all have been able to figure that out.My best to everyone….maybe my next post will not take as long as this one did…Todd – (aka: DH)

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