In March of 2000, I stumbled onto a black and white photo of a cute, confident looking artist online. "Is your name really Raphael?", I asked, along with two other questions that had you intrigued. You emailed back, answering my questions, and as I read what you had written, I smiled. "I read your profile, and I must say, it was good reading. Very endearing. We have similar hopes and dreams, plans and schemes... only you're much cuter". That is how our love story began.
On May 10, 2002, we stood in a gazebo, overlooking the ocean, as the adorable Jamaican minister pronounced us husband and wife. "James and Jen-EE-fer"...Forever. We had no idea what the future held, but we were ready to start the next chapter.
Yes, the past eight years have brought hardships. A house with loser renters, the deaths of our grandmothers and Jack, a failed business, trying to get pregnant for two long years, infertility tests and procedures, financial struggles and a burgulary.
But, the past eight years have brought so much joy. Vacations, parties, times spent with family and friends, a new house, and the birth of Dylan. The hardships are big, and they seem so significant at the time, but really, it's the little everyday joyful moments that make this love story what it is. The jokes, the laughs, the stories. The homemade cards, the ten minute back massage swaps, holding hands while we watch TV, laughing at something funny Dylan said, arguing about the dishes or who's going to pack the bag, telling each other our best and hardest things. That's what makes our love story special. That's what makes it... ours. I can't wait to see what the next chapter holds.
I Love You Big Time,