Thursday, January 5, 2012


Vincent and I have been married for 3.5 years. While it’s not 35 years it’s still pretty impressive given the “expectation.”

This post isn’t about marriage advice. It’s just our story.

Let me break it down for you:

- I “met” Vincent at a birthday party over the summer and we had an algebra class together Fall 2005. He was dating my best friends sister at the time so I figured by association we could be friends :). This picture was take in 2005. We didn't match on purpose- we were talking about the fact that we both had Superman shirts and about a month later we happen to wear them on the same day. Ironic.

-His girlfriend broke up in April 2006 and after he spent hours convincing me I wasn’t a rebound we started dating in May. Here we are ice skating in Florida over Thanksgiving. Yes- you read right- Florida.

- He enlisted in September 2006 (nope, I wasn’t happy but stuck with him) and in June 2007 he left for Parris Island. Here we are at his graduation. Longest 3 months ever...

-Vincent and I got engaged in September 2007. I was a senior in high school he was a Private in the Marine Corps. We got engaged unbeknownst to our families. Yea- not pretty. Don't recommend!

-In 2008, four days after I graduated high school we said “I do.” We were 18 and broke. Go figure.

-Six weeks after we got married, Vincent deployed to Iraq for 7 months.

- When he returned in February of 2009 everything was fine and dandy. We had some money saved up, were meeting new friends, and Vincent was doing well in school and with his unit. He picked up Corporal that summer.

-In December 2009 he was in a motorcycle accident that totally threw our lives out of whack. He couldn’t move his left shoulder and elbow and his career was over. This is a picture from our first Christmas as a married couple together (he was deployed the first one).
- In April 2010, I asked Vincent to marry me again and gave him a beautiful new ring (his old one was the cheapest I could buy- again I was in high school working at Outback…) He said yes (whew!) and his grandfather did the vow renewal.

-In September 2011 he was medically retired from the Marine Corps and we moved back to South Carolina.

Of the hundreds of couples we “met” while in the military, I would safely say, over 60% of them are already divorced. We had a lot working against us and we still do but we are making it work. We went through a deployment, death of a parent, major life-changing accident, and being relatively broke in the first 2 years of marriage alone.

We don’t have kids- which to this day shocks people. I think a lot of people thought I was pregnant in high school and that is why we got married so quick but it simply was not true. I was not and have not been pregnant. “Y’all have been married how long? No kids? Why?” – Well easy. We like to sleep and just aren’t ready. We are comfortable financially but not to the point where I think we should have kids. Plus, let’s face it, kids are kinda gross.

As cheese-mac-cheesy as it sounds, I still look at him and my heart flutters. When I see lovey-dovey scenes in movies, I always smile and think of how lucky I am to have him. Don’t get me wrong- a lot of days I feel like ringing his neck (and I usually do!) but at the end of the day I can say that as stupid, reckless, and irresponsible at it may have been to get married at 18, I still love the man I said “I do” too. We are happy, relatively debt-free, and live comfortably- not a lot of couples can say that.

So, when Vincent’s snoring wakes me in the middle of the night, I try to remember that I’m blessed to have him alive and healthy sleeping in the bed with me.


  1. Mary Louise you too are blessed and it is a blessing to have your happy little self as part of our family. You two make me very proud!!

    1. Thank you :) it's a blessing to be part of!

  2. Well Mary that is the most heart warming message I have ever read.

  3. I bookmarked this link so I can check up on your adventures. By the way Doni is one of the best and is totally right about having you in the family. You need to let her know about figuring out how we are related! She will really get a good laugh!

  4. This was quite a story and even though it's not a typical fairy tale; I seem to believe it is absolutely magical! lol The other day I told someone that feeling warm inside when looking at someone one day and then the next day you want to choke them...well, that I believe is marriage. Thankfully our love helps us not act on impulse or urge though, right : )

    Love Y'all

  5. I love you for this post. Thank you. My husband and I have relatively the same story. We just made 4 years in December and kid-lessly happy pressing on. We've gone through many ups and downs in just the fresh years of our marriage but at the end of it all I count my blessing verses the odds because its not about the emotion of feeling in love all the time but more about the decision I made to be in love with him daily and faithfully just as our God is with us. We are blessed to know the true meaning of marriage.

  6. Awww thank you! :) I love you for taking the time to read my blog!

    I'm so glad you are in a happy marriage and find God at the center!!

    Hope you will keep reading!

  7. Hello. My boyfriend and I are also high school sweethearts. We've been together for almost 4 years (march 10th) we have been talking about getting married sometime this year hopefully. I am 19 and he is 20 and we are deeply in love with each other I have no doubt in my mind that he's the one. I was born with Sickle Cell disease and he has been by my side trough out these 4 years like no other. Needless to say my parents absolutely adore him and as his parents do me. We are so excited to take our relationship to the next level. We are both virgins and plan to stay this way until married so that of course makes us even more eager. Our parents back us up 100%. So, what I wanted to know if there is any advice you could give us on to why or why not we should get married early. Thank you so much, God bless

    1. Well, I have 8 cousins and 5 of us married our high school sweethearts :) I believe that you are never to young or old to find love.

      I would make sure you have talked about the following (what I call) "fighters":

      1. Who is going to manage the money? Joint, seperate, or one person... (my husband manages our money because he is better with it. It doesn't bother me one bit and I trust him 100%)
      2. How do you feel about kids?
      3. Are we both going to work if we have kids or is one of us going to stay home?
      4. Where do you want to be in 5 years in regards to: career, family, and life

      You should check out this list too:

      Money is a HUGE fighting point and is one of the main reasons couples get divorced. My husband and I have bumped heads but I've made it a priority not to fight about money.

      I'm a realist. I didn't fall into the romantic side of marriage. I knew we could make it work from a financial standpoint.

      I also grew up with the "if it's broke, fix it." We really live in a society that is "oh it broke? buy a new one!" Divorce is so prevalant.

      In the last 5 years we have been through: his father's death, a depoyment, his brother's death, a serious car accident, medical retirement from military, going back to college, and three moves. We've been through a lot and we've come out on the other side better.

      I don't know how religious you guys are, but our faith has been a huge part. We pray together and have very similar beliefs.We agree on all the "big" things - like kids, money, faith, politics, etc.

      My husband and I have only been with each other. Sex is another fighting point and huge divorce issue - so I think it's great when couples have only been with each other. If comfortable, talk about your "drive." Sometimes couples fight because one is more driven then the other.

      I hope that helps! Feel free to email me :)

  8. I am 18 a senior in high school i met my boyfriend in feb. and we started dating in march the he left to basoc in april he graduated in august but we are in love. most people say i sound stupid for saying that. i know that i will marry him eventually but he says he wants to get married soon. i told him after i get my ring we wait a year to start planning and then take a year to plan so by then i would be almost a junior in college and he would be ready to up his contract and most likely move duty stations so by the time i graduate college we will move to his new duty station. This sounds reasonable not rushed. but i also have this side to me that says hey just sign the papers and still go to college. but my parents wouldnt approve. idk what is best im scared to mess up. :( you seem like you would have some good advice for me!

    1. First, you are not stupid for having feelings. Let's get that clear. When I got engaged I got mixed responses. Some good, some bad. I had to follow my heart. I was VERY practical though. I went through and looked into finances, health care, and things like that. Love is great but you have to be realistic. When Vincent was in the Marines, we lived paycheck to paycheck and we didn't have kids. Money is the #1 cause for divorce so we waited (and are still waiting to have kids).

      I didn't go to college. I didn't want too. Crazy right? I am a full-time photographer and I love it! My husband is the main provider and we are just as happy as we were at 17.

      Make sure you think of the pros and cons. I know that sounds so unromantic but hey - it's 2013.

      If you have any questions, email me :) I was so lost when Vincent enlisted and reaching out to other girls was the best thing for me!!