Oh the wonderful, “how did you meet your spouse,” question. If you remember from my first blog post, I requested to return to home on a Humanitarian Reassignment. These assignments for service members are used to get them close to family members who are terminally ill. Luckily for me, mine was accepted. It was roughly June of 2016 when I returned from being stationed at Japan. “Home” for me was Delaware and there was an Air Force base there, Dover AFB.
When I touched down in Philly, the closest airport to Delaware, it was HOT but the sky was clear and the sun was shining. I was so nervous and anxious to be home. I knew what it meant for me and my family but I was also excited to be apart of a new Security Forces unit. After a few weeks of in-processing and settling in, I started working again. One day, I walked out to go “post out” for my shift and passed by a co-worker who was talking to a guy I had never seen before. He had his beret shaped to where it covered one of his eyes and I was a SUCKER for that mysterious yet intimidating look it gave. As I walked by I could barely tell that he had dark hair and blue eyes, my FAVORITE. Y’all when I tell you that I was instantly crushing, it was the definition of “on sight”. He didn’t even notice me. Not one glance up, at least I didn’t see one. As I started walking to the patrol car with all my gear I realized something, I never looked at his ring finger and I didn’t get a good look at his name tape! Shit! I don’t have a reason to walk back by. Oh well, I pretended I needed to go back inside for something, he wasn’t paying attention to me anyway.
Coming back outside the second time, for literally no other reason than to gather more subtle intel on this mystery man, my heart sank. Looking at his ring finger, married. Damnit.. At that point it didn’t matter what his name was, he was off limits. As disappointed as I was, I went about my day and even months after that. Never really seeing him again or even knowing who he was after that first time I saw him.
“What’s meant to be will always be yours.”– Reyna Biddy
Half a year went by and I saw this guy maybe a handful of times. I had dated other people and been living my own life. After running into each other a few times for work, I found out his name… Reilly. At least, that was his last name. Military members don’t really call each other by first names and if you do then you know each other well or are good friends. It’s just not institutionally acceptable to be on a first name basis for the most part. We knew each other enough to “shoot the shit” in passing but it was never anymore than that for the longest time. About a year after that first day I saw him, he was getting ready to PCS. I was excited for him because he had been at Dover for WAAAY too long. I had been in the military far less than he had at that time and was on my third duty station. He was still on his first.. and at about 9 years of service at that point. Yikes. Definitely time for a change of pace and scenery.
He was always witty, genuine and happy to help out literally anyone that needed it. He had a knack for teaching co-workers the tricks of the trade and was a great instructor for countless training days. As his departure date got closer, I started to notice that he seemed off. He wasn’t his normal self. I didn’t know him well enough to ask and it was none of my business in all reality. So I never pried. One day I overheard some of our co-workers gossiping (IYKYK) and heard his name. I instantly piped up and asked what the fuss was all about. They mentioned that the word on the street was that he was going through a nasty divorce and she absolutely destroyed him by cheating on him. I was PISSED. Along with many other people we worked with. He was so well known for being a genuine, good hearted, sweet soul, how the hell could anyone do anything so low to someone like that?
Needless to say, I kept the news to myself. I was so mad for him and knew exactly how he felt. I had been in his shoes once before and it almost ruined me as a person. I knew what it felt like to be committed to someone and then have the rug ripped right out from under you when you least expected it. Regardless of understanding, I knew it still wasn’t my place to reach out or even hint that I heard about what was going on. His marriage, his business – I’m no one to him. I remained a distant co-worker friend and attended his “going away” luncheon. We all talked shit about how long he had been at Dover and had some laughs. He and I ended up exchanging our Snapchat’s with each other. That’s when I finally got to see it, Cavan.. his first name in someway on my phone. Granite, I knew his first name before then but seeing it in a personal form felt pretty good.
I let it ride for a little bit, giving him space and sending him stupid memes every now and then. When he departed for his next duty station I felt an overwhelming need to let him know that I SAW him and he had support. It went a little something like this:
“Look I know we aren’t super close but I wanted to let you know that I heard about what’s going on and I can’t tell you how sorry I am that you’re going through this. I’ve been in your shoes in a similar situation before and I know it’s not easy but I hope that you have people who are supporting you through this. All I will say is that hurt like that can cause a lot of damage and change you as a person. You’re a good-hearted person and you didn’t deserve to be treated that way. Don’t let this turn you cold and change the core of who you are. You’re better than that”
He thanked me and we went on with business as usual. Shit talking through Snapchat and keeping in contact here and there. We started to become really good friends over time. We would mock our Tinder matches, send screenshots of people we found on there who shouldn’t have been on there in the first place, yknow the typical things friends do. I didn’t think we were really all that close until I found out that I got orders. Guess who I messaged first? Yup, Cavan, and on Snapchat of all things. Ya girl didn’t even have his number! I literally called this man on Snapchat out of total excitement because it was to a state he wanted to go to. Why was he my first call? To this day neither of us really know why, it was just pure reaction and it felt right.
We had become so unknowingly close that he was the one I wanted to share everything with all the time. That day, his roommate Nick, started to raise an eyebrow at how close we had gotten. Rightfully so, it was kind of hard not to notice at that point but neither of us thought anything of it. We were “just really good friends.” A few days went by and we received the news that my moms cancer had spread to her brain. We were in the final days and I didn’t know how to function. Cavan almost immediately noticed and he did everything he could to keep my spirits up. Memes daily, checking in on me, calling or FaceTiming me to just “be there” even if we didn’t say much. I didn’t know it at the time but he was also reaching out to friends and co-workers to make sure that my unit was showing support too. How much more perfect could he be? Without prompting or anything he just did what he could to take care of me. Our friends obviously noticed and started to poke both of us about it, “are you sure that you’re ‘just friends’? you seem a lot closer than that” Then WE noticed but didn’t act on it right away.
My mom passed on October 14th, 2017 and Cavan never left my side, virtually of course. All it took one morning (I wasn’t sleeping much and he worked nights) was for me to throw out that timeless question of, “what are we?” The rest is history. Cavan and I were dating long distance for quite some time. Traveling back and forth between duty stations to see each other and FaceTiming literally every night. Everything with him just felt right. I couldn’t explain it but I just knew that he was meant to be apart of my life. He was everything I could have ever asked for and more, especially during the darkest part of my life.
Eventually, he came to his senses and popped the question in front of my closest family while visiting Horseshoe Bend at the Grand Canyon. That story itself is one for the books. All I’ll say is I swear I thought he was going over the edge that day.
Here we are, two kids and two dogs later, married since August 2018 and I can’t picture my life any other way. He’s an incredible father to his two baby girls and the most supportive husband I could have ever been blessed with. Watching him with our daughters is everything I’ve ever wanted for my children. He’s gentle, patient, fiercely protective but most of all is he loves them unconditionally.
Cavan, if you’re reading this, I want you to know that I would move heaven and earth for you. You are my now, my future and my forever. Everything you have given me and brought to my life has been full of love and genuine care. I’ll never be able to repay you for all you have done for me when I lost my mom and what you have provided from then on. All that you are and who you are yet to be is who I know I am meant to share my life with, from the moment I laid eyes on you. You have given me such a beautiful life, amazing children and endless love even on our worst days. I don’t tell you enough how proud of you I am. You’re absolutely incredible and I will never take a single moment with you and our family for granted. You taught me what love truly feels like and for that I am forever grateful. I love you the mostest to infinity and beyond ♥️.
I hope that you, the reader, have enjoyed our corny little love story. Wherever you are in your story, know that the one who will love you unconditionally is out there. I can promise you from experience that the moment you lay eyes on them, you will feel it deep down in your bones that you are meant to be. Thank you for reading & joining me here.
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