I first met Jacob in 6th grade. Until middle school, we had attended different elementary schools even though we lived right next to each other. I never knew he lived behind me until 6th grade when I began catching the bus from my house instead of my grandmas. The first time we talked, we had a bond and quickly became best friends. Every night, he was at my house after school, and after homework was done, of course. We were inseparable. As we grew up, we grew closer. Once we started high school, we didn't have any classes together, so we kind of drifted apart. We still talked on the phone and saw each other in school, but quickly became immersed in different activities. He was in band, and I was in choir. Between those activities and our homework, we started only seeing each other on the bus before and after school. I missed my closest friend, but couldn't find a time when we both weren't busy with something. So, as old friends tend to do at times, we drifted apart. But, if I ever needed him, I knew he was there for me. In 6th grade, he told his dad he was going to marry me. Of course, I never knew about this until a much later date. Now, fast forward a couple of years to our junior year of high school. We saw each other a little more, and began talking more again since our busy schedules with school had began to slow down. We never became as close as when we were in middle school though. Until our senior year. He joined the DEP program to continue on to the United States Navy after graduation. In the 6 months before he left for boot camp, he really began opening up about his true feelings for me. Now, everyone saw those feelings, but me. I was clueless. I saw him as my best friend, someone who was always there for me, and honestly, kind of a brother figure. I never assumed it was anything more than that. When I heard he had joined the Navy, my heart sank. I remember thinking, "Wow, the guy who has always been just a minute away, is now going to be 8 hours away, and then possibly farther than that." I had a rough time coming to terms with how I truly felt about Jacob. Going from, "oh, he's just my friend" to, "oh wow...I think I love him" was a complete and total shock. He had always known how he felt about me. It took me a little longer to come to terms with it. The 6 months before he left for boot camp was a tough time for me and him both. I was still trying to sort my feelings out, and he was right there always reminding me of how he felt. I kept thinking, "I'm only 17...there's no way I can possibly be considering settling down already. We are to young." But, I was considering it. Finally, a month before he left for boot camp, it really hit me just how much I loved him. Once I let myself realize how I felt about him, things moved quickly. We spent every waking moment together because we both knew our time was short. The day he left, he came to my house at around 7 in the morning to say goodbye. It was the hardest thing I have ever had to do in my life. He left me with a kiss and an envelope of notes, with strict orders not to open them until he was gone. When he left, I sat in my room and opened that envelope. Inside was 3 letters, one had a necklace with a ring on it. That was his promise to me. He has loved me since 6th grade and always knew that someday, I would come around and realize what he meant to me. He never gave up on me, and I'm glad he didn't. This man who spent a good 6 years chasing me in hopes of being with me for the rest of his life, is now my husband. We got married February 6th, 2010, and he left for Yokosuka, Japan February 13th, 2010 for 3 years. He has been gone for almost a year, and I have seen him once. In November, me and his dad went to visit him for a week and a half while the ship was in port. A week after we left, the George Washington deployed to South Korea for training exercises. He is due to come home sometime in January, and I would love for us to have a couple of nights just for ourselves. He deserves some relaxation time while he is home because he doesn't get much on a day to day basis on the ship. I know there are a lot of other military couples who deserve this just as much as we do, I just wanted to let our story be known. I love you Jacob and am very proud of you. To all the other military service members and their families, I am proud of the service you provide for your country and hope you know you have the full support of myself, and all of your family members. Thank you all for what you do for us.
Home for the Holidays
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