Where have you been all my life? Seems like such a cheesy line, but it was exactly the thought that went through my head when I sat on a poncho liner at Kentucky Lake next to my now husband a little over 9 years ago. I remember clearly like it was yesterday our entire dating experience. I dropped my then boyfriend off at his barracks after a drunken night at the bar(what was his name again?), and saw Andy driving up in his car so I pulled back into the parking lot. Now mind you before this night he had called me a bitch on one occasion and I had replied with asshole, then he had sang a song about me to his friends, something about me in a bikini in the barracks or something? And he had sat with me at a table in the upper level of the Black Horse Pub while my then boyfriend played pool and ignored me the whole night. Back to the drunken boyfriend bar/me stalking Andy night. I guess you could say I was stalking him since I turned around and pulled back into the parking lot, but I say it was to simply see if everyone had a good time that night. Considering they were all deploying very soon, I thought I should make sure everyone had got back safe. I complained about the drunken, idiot, player I was dating and Andy replied with "you wanna go to lunch tomorrow?" Of course I said yes, even though I knew the drunken idiot player was leaving on the Advon Party for Kosovo that day. It was very strange, I didn't really sleep well that night, I drove into work early (which I never did) only because I wanted to make sure we were still on for lunch, of course we were. We went to Subway (you should all know that he's going to probably kick my butt for telling this story) I had roast beef and he had chicken. We talked about my drunken idiot player and how the relationship probably wasn't going to work out. He told me he would never ask someone to wait for him during a deployment that it isn't fair. I think that was the first time he actually stopped me in my tracks at something he said... we went on about the day, I said goodbye to the boyfriend and then that afternoon Andy asked me if I wanted to go to dinner before going out to Kickers that night. So I grabbed Tiffany and Nelson and we all went to dinner with Oliver and Farmer too... thats the night of the cock stroking.. but thats a whole other story. We went to Kickers and we really had fun together. Then I took him back to the barracks....um yeah I said back to the barracks, and I went home... Hmmm... interesting... that was the 2nd time he stopped me in my tracks. I couldn't sleep good that night either and I was up early the next morning calling him to see if he wanted me to come get him so he could get his car that was parked in front of my house. We ended up going to the lake with some of my other friends that day. We spent the whole day together, talking about random stuff, talking about my kids, talking about our families, just really talking about anything.... the 5 days we were inseperable. We spent every moment together. When he got ready to leave I told him I'd wait for him to come back from Kosovo (that might have been the first time I stopped him in his tracks). The next 6 months of that deployment were long. We talked everyday on the phone, sometimes 4 or 5 times a day (this was pre-9/11 deployments were a bit different). About 3 months into the deployment I told him I loved him... I didn't get an I love you back, it took a little longer than I expected but I understood and patients and persistance paid off I finally got an I love you back eventually and it stopped me in my tracks. When he got back from deployment we spent a couple days together just us and I introduced him to Emily and Billy. He basically moved into my house after that. He had a room at the barracks but he really never spent any time there. I got out of the Army in November of that year (2001) I was unemployed and he didn't really care, he even helped me with the kids Christmas that year, and he had no obligation to do so... again he stopped me in my tracks. We got married on June 22, 2002 with our friends and some of our family there, it was outside, it was hot but we had a great day. The thing you should understand about Andy and I is we are a perfect fit. We finish each others sentences, we think the same thoughts, we have this crazy sense of humor, and when he's not here part of me is truely missing. We've been through a lot since we've been together some bad but mostly amazing and good. We will celebrate our 8th Wedding Anniversary June 22nd this year, we won't have some big vacation, fancy party or even a dinner date alone, but it won't matter. To this day everytime he hugs or kisses me or comes up behind me and kisses my neck, I remember that guy sitting next to me on that poncho liner at that lake 9 years ago and he still stops me in my tracks.
I love you Andrew Brown.