Monday, October 15, 2007

Fun Monday Meeting!

Before I begin, I have a big shout out to Bond at Bond's Big Leather Couch for the fabulous masthead you see today! Thank you, Bond, for helping out the Neophtye!

Janet is this week's hostess, and she let us VOTE for our assigment! The winner was "how we met our significant other," which in my case, wasn't under the best of circumstances.

I had just recently moved to this tiny town in Arkansas, having graduated from a 42,000-student university. I had grown up near Houston, Texas, and had only twice visited my uncle in this town, where he had a job waiting for me. My parents moved the same month to Laguna Beach, CA

My first month here, I auditioned and got the part of Anelle in the local production of "Steel Magnolias" - perfect for a newbie, and a way to throw myself into the community. I had broken it off with my boyfriend at college, but he refused to admit that distance would hinder our relationship. He wanted to "date" - and the play's opening weekend, he flew in to spend four days with me. The week of dress rehearsals, I had reached an unfortunate conclusion: I was NOT ready for country life. The nearest liquor store was over an hour and a half drive away, on long, winding roads - NOTHING like the straight and narrows of Texas. My job was NOT paying what my Bachelor's degree was worth. And my friends consisted of older women from work, who had nothing better to do than sit around and bitch about their husbands.

On Wednesday, October 20th, 1992, I had reached a total breaking point. I became distraught at the office, sobbing frantically, ready to change my life, even move to California. I had gone from the city life, where you aren't expected to look anyone in the eye - to a tight-knit community, where you are expected to know everyone's cousin's brother, and the names of all their children by each of their three wives/girlfriends. I just wasn't feeling it.

A lady at work took drastic action and dragged me to the house of complete strangers. She assured me that it would be okay - they had come from California and had adjusted just fine. I didn't want to go ANYWHERE, with my tear-streaked face, rumpled clothing and piss-poor outlook on my future. I couldn't even react as she tossed me in her car and whisked me away. As I was ushered thru their kitchen and out onto their deck, I vaguely noticed a man on the kitchen phone, engaged in a serious discussion. Hitching and sobbing, I was introduced to three strangers. A glass of wine appeared in front of me, and I sat there desperately trying not to weep and wail out loud while conversation floated around me. A few minutes later, the man on the phone joined us.I don't think Roger and I spoke five words to each other that night - after all, I was still a little addled and surely a fright to look at! After an hour or so, we all said our goodbye's. I made my exit by gracefully called the hostess' husband the wrong name - especially considering he was still wearing his work clothes with his name embroidered on the front.

I left that night with something tugging at me. After the play that weekend, and after convincing the ex-boyfriend that he was PERMANENTLY going to be an ex, my thoughts turned to the man from that night. I had been on some HORRIBLY disappointing dates during my stay - but something was intriguing about him. He wasn't like the men I had dated before. I had no clue who he was, but something told me I had to see him again. If for no other reason than to convince him I wasn't normally a blubbering moron.The next week, he called. I spent almost every night of the next two months with him. He was a musician - and 15 years older than me (he didn't look it). I wasn't sure about the age thing - but I was spending time with someone who was smart, funny, and a caring person - who was NOT looking for a serious relationship, much less a marriage.

When did I know for sure that I was going to marry him? I had my suspicions that first week, but it really crystallized when I went to visit my parents in December...the first week was okay, but the second week? HELL. Not b/c of my parents, but b/c I couldn't stand the thought of being away from him another second. The days at the California paradise seemed a prison compared to the frigid conditions of Arkansas with Roger. And here we are, 15 years later, happier than ever.

Now go read other sweet stories from Fun Monday participants, while I go vomit from the mushiness of this post.

49 comments:

Bond said...

what a great story ... and you two look extremely happy and that is what it is all abouot...

hey nice header ... bwahahaahahah and MY pleasure!

Willowtree said...

Holly guacamole, way to go Roger!! It's every guy's dream to hook some babe 15 years younger! (unless the guy is under thirty of course, then not so good!)

janet said...

i personally love mushy. i love your story.

Beccy said...

Love the story...love WT's comment!

Desert Songbird said...

That Bond - he's multi-talented. He's also...oh, never mind.

Great story, T. From your humble beginnings in this world to your life know, hasn't it been an incredible journey?

Hootin'Anni said...

Awwwwwwwww, age doesn't matter. I KNOW it doesn't. I too married an older man. And it's lasted 40 years.

Beautiful couple. I love your photo you shared. Hope you two continue with a great relationship too.

Blue Momma said...

Great story. I had always "planned" to marry an older man, and then ended up robbing the cradle. Go figure.

Your story was great. Just think, if you'd moved to Laguna Beach your kids might be on some MTV reality show. Good move staying in Arkansas!

her indoors said...

that is a sweet story, and i love the older guy, mine is 13 years older and we been together for 28 years soon

Melissa said...

I love this story so much! I'm so glad you found someone wonderful and you came through that rotten time. You definitely deserve it.

You and Jenny both have me craving some professional photography of my family today. :)

Great header!

Robinella said...

That's a great telling of a great love story. Beautiful pictures.

Sayre said...

Marvelous story, Tigger! I just love happy endings...

Tiggerlane said...

bond - thanks, again! And happiness is everything.

willowtree - except for the constant worries that said younger woman thinks you're old - which I don't. Still doesn't keep him from worrying.

janet - thanks, but mushiness makes me sappy - I cry at romance movies, so this Fun Monday will make me cry at work!

beccy - thanks - and WT is just dreaming.

desert songbird - Uh-oh, you'd better spill! A fantastic journey, and The Offspring has made it even better.

hootin' anni - agreed! I think older men (for the most part) are more mature.

blue momma - I am waiting until my next marriage to rob the cradle. :-)

her indoors - I like hearing that others have older husbands - makes me feel not-so-odd.

melissa - thanks! And we were the photographers' first guinea pigs - she did great, tho!

robinella - thank you - I still don't think he looks 15 years older, but I could be wrong.

sayre - it wasn't planned, that's for sure, but it DID end up happy!

dawn said...

Great story. I was mesmerized reading it. How very interesting how things worked out from that one meeting. Was that the intention of your friend who took you to meet the strangers? You have great photos, and I love your new header.

susan said...

I love that first picture, it's just so sweet. Great story, it's always a good thing to know that he's already seen you at your worse in the first meeting! ;D

nikki said...

Great job. My hubby is 11 years older than me! It made me really nervous in the beginning too.

Matt-Man said...

Congrats on 15 great years together Tigger. Cheers!!

Sandy said...

No vomit, just the right amount of mush and what a lovely story! Thanks for sharing.

Oh, and by the way, KILLER header!

Sandy said...

I commented before I read the other comments - my hubby is 10 years older than me - I think it's perfect!

Tiggerlane said...

dawn - I didn't find out until much later that there had been a plot for us to meet - but the intense conversation Roger was having that night was with a current girlfriend, who also quickly became an "ex."

susan - Pretty much! Oh, except he later got to see me drunk...and then during childbirth. That he's still around is a good sign.

nikki - made my parents VERY nervous - very, very nervous. Yours?

matt-man - thanks! I'll drink one for you, too.

sandy - I think it's cool to have an older man - except I'm NOT looking forward to changing his Depends in later years.

AnGlOpHiLe FoOtBaLl FaNaTiC said...

Mushy is sweet. Of course, I've never forgiven Pup for moving us out of Houston, and refuse to have any more kids or stop spending all of the money until we move back, but I guess your spouse is worth the lack of city.

Joy T. said...

Ok I'm going to sound really weird when I say this but....I had always wanted to marry an older man. I didn't. But I had always wanted to. Why? Let's just say the 'maturity' level of an older man always appealed to me. Ah well. So is life. Loved the story and the pictures are gorgeous! AND the header on your blog. Love it!

Karmyn R said...

Sweet. Mushy - a little. So cool that you knew he was the one right away.

Pamela said...

makes you realize that home really IS where the heart is

Christine said...

Love the new header.
Those are some lovely family photos.
You two look very sweet together.
I'd once dated someone 10 years older, it was just the timing that got in the way, not his age. So I have to agree Age does not matter!

Tiggerlane said...

anglophile football fanatic - I sure wish I could get mine over the "fear of cities," but got him to go to Chicago - so he's slowly wearing down.

joy t. - thanks so much! And there IS a drawback to marrying an older man - he knows how to do most household chores better than me, and doesn't mind telling me.

karmyn r - cool, and freakish. B/c I am SO not the kind of girl who was on the hunt for a man. Nor was I ever!

pamela - VERY true!

christine - thanks! And it's all in the mindset, I think! (I still don't think I'm as old as my years!)

lisa's chaos said...

I'm so happy to read all these stories of long times loves. 15 years is a long time, Congrats! I'll be in SW MO next month, extremely close to Arkansas. :)

min said...

That was beautifully disgusting. I love Arkansas, but it does have it's limits when it comes to some of the things that the city has to offer. I'm glad you're happy now.
Love the new look!

mjd said...

Your story is romantically beautiful. Your husband is handsome, and you are gorgeous. I really,really like your first picture. I am glad that you found each other; it seems to be working.

Nora Bee said...

Great story! Home is where the heart is, eh?

Kila said...

Love it. I'm happy for you. And what terrific photos! I can't imagine you looking bad even after hours of crying!

Alix said...

Fabulous story, what luck you were taken to the house that night - love the twists of fate.

Simply Jenn said...

Thank goodness for the drastic measure. This is a great post and a nice, fateful kind of story.

Kaytabug said...

CONGRATS on the new header! It's GREAT!!
I didn't think your story was mushy I thought it was just lovely!

Robocop said...

Great story.

Bond said...

Hey...you need to go in and delete the old header...in your code where it says BLOG HEADER there is an http code for background and one for inner..i think if you take them out the header in the back will go away

this XML code always confuzzles me....

ChrisB said...

That is a lovely story I'm a great believe in kismet, so it was meant to be.

Tiggerlane said...

lisa's chaos - I'll wave from my spot in Southwest Central Arkansas! We should have pretty weather, at least.

min - thanks! I sure do miss Houston, tho. May have to visit to get my fix.

mjd - it really is a good combination - and our kid? She is totally her own person. I love the first photo mostly b/c of the look of disgust on her face.

nora bee - yup! So I guess I'd better let him move into the new house with me....

kila - I'm truly glad no one has photos of my crying. It is NOT pretty!

alix - it really is amazing, since we both broke off relationships that same weekend.

simply jenn - thanks! And I do believe it those simple twists of fate.

kaytabug - all thanks to Bond! He still wants me to tweak it a bit.

robocop - thanks - great weird red eye you got there!

bond - okay, I'll try, but you have no idea how much I suck at that kinda stuff.

chrisb - I do, too - it was totally meant to be. We are really perfect for one another.

Junebug said...

Love your new header too. I married a musician too. You should see the number of guitars and amps he has acquired after 32 years of marriage. I posted my meet/cute today, if you want to read it. :))

swampy said...

Love the new masthead...you are beautimous, as always.
Great pics today. What a romantic story !
BTW, pop over to my place today. You are the topic of conversation. TeeHeeHee

Robin said...

GREAT new header, Tiggerlane!

Fantastic family portrait!!

And your "meet" story? Wonderful :). Maybe it's the best sometimes NOT to see it coming.

(somehow it doesn't surprise me your college story was somewhat similar to mind...we can just "tell" these things, huh? ;) ).

Sirdar said...

What an awesome story. It is funny how sometimes when you are at your worst, something good comes out of it. And it sounds like that was Roger. Awesome!!

Robin said...

Loved your story.

Robin in CA

Robin said...

Loved your story.

Robin in CA

Lil Mouse (Jill) said...

yeah i dont know if i could handle that big of an age difference. i went out with a guy my brother's age. 6 years older. i was 18 and he'd already had a long term live- in relationship. i just wasnt that grown up yet. he wanted to give it a try even though i was at college and i just couldnt see myself with him. for one thing he was obsessed with guns. really likes them, keeps a big cabinet full of them at home--not unlike my brother, but still, umm. i wouldnt live with a bunch of guns. and i figured if i was going to get into it, i was getting into it. i still feel bad that i didnt give it more of a try, for his sake. but i'm glad for mine. 2 years later my hubby and i re-met. sigh... oh and your house looks great!

Jenni said...

Sweet story, but I love that picture of the two of you and your daughter the best. What a great shot!

Piglet said...

ah that is such a great story. not you being upset, altho it seems more often than not our greatest pain comes our greatest treasures.

Tiggerlane said...

junebug - I'll bet your house rocks! Any time you guys want to come enjoy the music studio we are building - come on down!

swampy - you are a DOLL! Towels - a girl can never have enough towels!

robin - I agree - I think it happens when you're not looking, which is awesome! I'll bet we had some of the same outfits - the '80s were HAWT.

sirdar - Yes, you are SO right. And Roger was in the right place, at the right time.

robin in CA - thanks! and thanks for stopping by!

lil mouse - thanks so much! And sometimes it is tough - he is a lot smarter than me, and more experienced, so I can feel like an idiot at times.

jenni - I love that "Ewww...gross!" look on my kiddo's face - like, she doesn't even want to THINK about her parents kissing!

piglet - So true - it's amazing where our greatest joys can be found.

Shayna said...

I don't think I realized you were so new to the area during "Steel Magnolias." How incredibly stressful. Well, I'm so glad you found happiness. :)

Tiggerlane said...

shayna - very new - but it WAS a lot of fun. Your mom was soooo great, and you were a smart little bugger, for a high school girl!