Well, a lot has been happening behind the scenes over the past few months. A. LOT. I was sitting here tonight and got to thinking about just exactly how much and I started to laugh. It truly is quite comical.
See, on this day last year I was very close to having a complete nervous breakdown. My 17th wedding anniversary would have been the next day (7-9-16) and I was celebrating it with a friend who had been my friend for thirty-seven years by Zip-lining through the trees in a State Park. My house was nearing completion; I was headed back to work soon; and I missed my husband something awful. I was “dating” someone who truly helped me to heal in ways he will never understand and I couldn’t give him what he really wanted in life. Add all of that to the emotions that I was battling constantly; two girls who I was solely responsible for; and about a million other little things and you had the makings of one more nervous breakdown!!!
Fast forward one year to this day: July 8, 2017. I have officially been married to the man of my dreams for one week. Let me introduce you to my husband, Heath Webb.
Heath and I met because of his adorable little boy who I happened to know from school. We had talked numerous times by phone and many text messages, but it wasn’t until late April that he and I became Facebook friends. When I saw his profile picture I must admit…my heart did a flip flop in my chest. He really is just that good looking. I could not wait to actually meet him in person one day.
I was already friends with his ex-wife at the time and because they knew me on a professional level; I kept it that way. Until the day I changed my relationship status on my Facebook page. See, Heath thought I was married. He had no clue who I was; what my story was; or anything else about me personally until Facebook. When he saw that I was in a relationship he said that he just watched me from the outside and that I seemed like a fun person; but he wouldn’t attempt to talk to me if I was seeing someone else.
Well, the day my status changed is the day he decided it was ok to talk. I may have encouraged him to talk a little more those next few days to let him know I was most defiantly interested in getting to know him better; but I wasn’t just gonna throw myself out there by admitting I was attracted to him either. A girl must be careful…especially these days.
We started texting one another a little more every day, until one day he asked if he could use the little device in my hand to call and hear me talk instead of reading the words I was typing with my fingers. I laughed and said yes…and that started this whole love affair.
The day he asked me out on a date, I as very conflicted. I wanted to go so bad I could taste it, but I also had a professional and personal responsibility to his child and his ex-wife. So, what did I do? I called her up and told her that he had asked me out…and I asked her if she minded if I went out with him. After several seconds of silence, she said, “It’s about time he asked someone good out.” And the rest as they say…is history!!
Our first official date was to a Japanese steak house where we sat and talked throughout the whole meal. We laughed and just plain out enjoyed our time together. He asked me if he could see me again and we have been together literally every single day since then except maybe five…and those we spent texting back and forth non-stop.
I am reasonably sure that we fell in love with each other at almost the same moment. It was just crazy how well we fit together in our thoughts, ideas, and beliefs. He had been raised in the church and had an enormous amount of Bible knowledge. I was so surprised when he offered to pray before every meal…no matter where we were or who was with us. He told me his story and I told him mine. We had been together for several weeks before he even realized I had written a book. It was over a month before he actually read it.
By the time he read my book we were already crazy about each other. He was the first person I talked to every morning and the last one I talked to at night. I told some of my closest friends that I would marry him the day after our first date. When I saw who Heath Webb really was…I was like a moth to a flame. He made me want to live again. Really live. Not just go through the motions…truly live. He made me want to settle down and quit running. He was a soothing wind to my gypsy soul.
Then, I pulled out my notebook. I wrote a list after Greg died of the things I wanted in a husband. I also wrote letters to my future husband. The day I claimed Jeremiah 33:11-16 as my promise from God that I WOULD love someone again…that I WOULD have joy and gladness within the walls of my home again…that I WOULD have laughter and the sounds of bride and bridegroom in my life again…I began to write letters to him.
In those letters, I wrote what I was doing…how I was struggling to survive alone. How I wished I could open my heart and truly love someone again. I wrote about the things I did and the things I wanted to do. I prayed for him and I asked God to prepare him…and I wondered what he was doing while we both waited for God’s timing.
I had no idea that God truly was preparing Heath for me during those days. He had been divorced for six years. He had dated people and he had been alone more than anything. He had struggled to keep going, keep trying, keep living. He just went through the motions and got to the point where he was tired of asking God to send him a woman who he could love forever. He didn’t think real love, kindness, or devotion was even possible at this point in his life. He told me that he had even told God that he didn’t want to be a part of his plan anymore if all he was going to have to look forward to was being alone and miserable for the rest of his life.
Then, out of the blue here I came like white lightning and changed his whole world. Just like he did mine. That was sooooo a “God thing”! Neither one of us could fathom that we had crossed paths. It was just too weird that we were seeing our prayers and dreams being reflected in each other’s eyes and words. We knew we had found “the one” almost instantly.
And, the biggest blessing of all? Our children LOVED each other from the first moment they met. That was also a “God thing”.
Our kids are actually the reason we got married like we did last Saturday! We had talked about getting married maybe “in November” and Maggie…my child who never says anything about her feelings…said, “Uh…I don’t think so!”. We laughed and said, “Well we could wait until next April or May maybe.” To which she smartly responded, “Uh…NO. I would not even give you until November…I sure ain’t giving you to next year!” And, so we started looking at dates on our calendar.
We settled on October 14, 2017 and that seemed to please everyone. Until we bought a camper.
Knowing we wanted to take trips together as a family and knowing we had to set a good example for ourselves and our four kids we decided that we would just go to the mountains and elope in mid-July. Everyone in our close circle was happy about that plan except for my Daddy, brother, and best friend. They all had to work and would not be able to be there at that time…and that was unacceptable. So, I had a conversation with my Mama and we decided that we could pull a wedding off in two weeks…and that is exactly what we did.
I can’t say that it was all fun and games…because it was NOT. But, I can say that it turned out amazing and I am so glad that we had the wedding that we had with our family and friends there to help us celebrate the beginning of our new life.
Tomorrow would have been my 18th wedding anniversary. It feels so weird that this year I am able to look back on that day with happiness in my heart. I will always love Greg Hubbert. He will always be my first love of a lifetime…my friend…my kid’s daddy. His place in my life will always be the same. He just finished his race before I did and I was his “to death do us part”.
Now, I have a new husband. A new friend. A new love of a lifetime. He will be my “’til death do us part” or I will be his. Either way…we are in this life together for the rest of our “Earthly Ever”. I am so thankful for God’s love, mercy, and grace. I am so thankful for a heart that was healed and made bigger after it was shattered. I am so thankful for a Father who saw me cry out to Him and He was faithful to provide exactly what I needed when the time was right. I don’t know why He does the things He does. What I do know is that I am so happy I could cry tears of joy at any moment.
I pray that my story helps you see that there truly is HOPE after DESPAIR. God does love you and He does care about the small, little details of your life. He does…Heath and I are both living proof of His love. He brought us both through some dark, sinful, dreary, miserable days…and He has made us new again in His image. We are so blessed and so excited to see what’s next for this wild and crazy band of Cowboys & Gypsy’s on 3GirlHill. We are just as surprised as everyone else and are looking forward to finding out “what’s next”…
Love to you all,
Emily Webb…the Gypsy that the Cowboy caught in his Webb.