When You Know, You Know

I tried to think of courting topics for this week's blog prompt but struggled to really come up with any ideas. Then I realized that I should just share my own story of how my late husband, Drew Pearson, and I met.

I meet my husband back in December of 2000. We had no idea what each other looked like in the beginning because we communicated through emails, a couple of letters, and a few phone calls. That was back when you had to plug your home phone line into your computer to get on the internet and long-distance calls were kept short because otherwise, the phone bill would be extremely high. Drew and I each had a personal ad on the Yahoo dating site. Somehow our paths crossed together and we began chatting via emails. I can't remember who reached out to who first. Meeting someone online was very uncommon at that time.

Since neither of us had the ability to scan a photo to email each other, we sent a couple of printed photos through regular mail. The first time I looked at his picture I saw that he was blond, which is normally not the type of guy I was attracted to. I thought, well if anything he could be a great friend. We spent lots of time writing and getting to know each other almost daily. Luckily the email made it easy to write back and forth quickly. Drew was extremely busy in his final year at West Point Military Academy in New York. I was a divorced mom with three children living in Grand Haven, Michigan.

Drew wanted to come to visit me for a weekend even though we had not been talking for very long. I finally agreed to let him come for a visit and it ended up being the weekend that really changed my life, even though I had not really realized it at that time.

Our wedding.

He drove from New York to Michigan which was about a twelve-hour drive. I remember being a little nervous about the idea that I was letting him come for a visit. We spent all weekend talking about our past, present situations, and what our hopes were for the future. At one point I told him that I never wanted to be married again because I had done it once and didn't feel it was for me. I had no issue being in a committed relationship, but I never wanted to feel trapped in marriage again. He seem to accept what I told him at the time, but I think he thought he could change my mind later on. The entire weekend I felt like I was hanging out with one of my best friends. When he left to head back to West Point I was sad that he was leaving and would be so far away, but we hoped to be able to meet up again soon.

I was actually getting ready to move to Clarksville, Tennessee within the next few months to take a new position as a branch manager within the company I was working for. I had hoped he would get stationed after Fort Campbell, Kentucky after he graduated from West Point. He told me he had put it down as one of the three choices that he would like to be stationed at, but I knew he really wanted to get stationed in Hawaii. I remember telling him when he left that whatever happens, we will figure things out because we both really felt connected.

The second time I would see Drew was over Easter Weekend. I was getting settled in Clarksville, Tennessee and he decided he wanted to fly out to visit me. I was excited to get the opportunity to spend more time with him. The first night Drew was there he poured champagne and as I was sipping mine he continued to stare at me. When I got to the bottom of my flute I realized that the reason Drew was staring at me was that he had placed an engagement ring in my flute. He later confessed that he had been staring at me because he was scared I would choke on the ring. I was completely caught off guard, which gave Drew the chance to explain that he would be moving around every couple of years and that I was the one he wanted to spend the rest of his life with. He was willing to step into my children's life as a father figure, which he definitely did. Even though I was scared to get married again, everything he was saying made sense. Plus he had already had a piece of my heart that was rapidly growing. He promised me that he knew we were meant for each other, even though we didn't know each other very long. I of course ended up saying yes, which he was very happy about because that meant my children and I would be moving to Hawaii with him.

The third time I would be seeing Drew again was at a meet-up point in Cheyenne, Wyoming. We were heading to Boise, Idaho to get married. Everything happened so fast but the connection and love we felt for each other made the idea of getting the married feel right. We were married in Boise, Idaho on June 16, 2001. Our families were welcoming to each of us and we were so excited for this next chapter in our life.

Our last trip away together before his final deployment.

During my journey of discovering my family history, I have learned a lot about courtships. The short courtship that Drew and I had was a common situation among millions of people from the beginning of time. The way we met was a little different, which nowadays is a completely common way to meet spouses. I use to think that Drew and I got married so fast, but honestly if I had to do it all over again I would have. I never second-guessed myself or felt rushed into marriage. It just felt completely right. My first husband and I had been together for a year before we ever got engaged. My first marriage only lasted about 4 years.

I feel like Drew was the person who was supposed to be a part of my life to show me what true love really is. We had different strengths and we felt connected. When Drew and I married and both promised each other 'til death due us part' I never realized how short of a time that I would be with him. As an Officer in the Army, he was always deploying and away at training, but I had never felt more loved by a man in my life. On April 30, 2008, while deployed to Iraq he would be KIA by an IED. I felt shattered for a very long time and honestly, it wasn't till recently that I really felt like I was living again.

There really is no perfect way to meet people or a length of courtship that is perfect. Some people within today's society seem to judge the way marriages happen, but honestly, if we look back at history there is no master plan that has worked. Just as each person is unique, the way we meet and court a person is unique.

I do not know if I will ever meet someone that will make me feel the way Drew did or if I will get married again, but the one thing that I do know is that when you know you met the right person you need to be open to the idea that you know. Don't judge your feelings on the length of time or how you meet.

This blog post was written from a prompt “Courting” which is part of a year-long challenge to write about 52 Ancestors in 52 Weeks. For more information on this series please visit https://www.amyjohnsoncrow.com/

Until next time, take care.