It was on this very day 8 years ago that an improbable union was formed against all odds and in defiance of so many who “knew” better.
They said it was a bad idea. Too risky.
They said I knew nothing about her.
They wanted to know why I had to go “over there.” Why couldn’t she “come here?”
They said I was crazy.
Well…they may have been right about that last part.
Some tried to throw a wrench into the works up until the day of our marriage.
But it didn’t work.
We married, and here we are today, sharing our lives with you.
So on this 8th marking of that glorious day, let’s rewind a bit, and see how this all went down.
Many of you know that we met on Facebook back in 2008, I living in San Francisco and she in Kazakhstan. If you’re not familiar with that part of the story, it’s summed up here.
Nearly two years later, I quit my job in San Francisco, sold all of my belongings and moved to Qatar to be with Handan. It was my first time seeing her in person. I had to pinch myself. How did this wondrous thing happen to me?
Our time in Qatar was brief, and then we traveled to America to be married. It was Handan’s first time in The States and her first step towards becoming an American citizen.
After a short stay in New England, we lit out for Turkey and parts unknown.
And then the Little Guy from Kazakhstan came for a visit.
My son. My son. I had to let that sink in.
I had a son!
Our time with our son was too short. He had to go back to Kazakhstan to start school.
And we had to fly into a war zone. It would be our home for the next year.
Afghanistan. It was an incredible adventure.
This was where we lived.
And it was perfect.
No matter where we went or where we go, we always seem to end up with little ones to care for.
This woman who was my wife became My Babes, and she was everything to me.
And she still is.
After Afghanistan, we spent some time unwinding along Turkey’s Mediterranean coast. We could finally relax.
We swam with dolphins. Who could ever forget that experience?
The best part was that our boy was back with us, if only temporarily.
We said goodbye to the boy and moved to Vietnam. He’d be joining us soon, but it wouldn’t be soon enough for his mother. When he finally did join us a few months later, it was for good. We’d never be apart again.
Ah, Vietnam. We could have lived there forever!
But it wasn’t meant to be, and we were thrust into India – a land of unparalleled beauty and incomprehensible squalor.
After six months, we’d had enough of India, and we moved to America.
We started a new life here.
My dearest wife and son started down the path towards citizenship.
We began to explore this new land.
And we started to figure out how to live our lives here in America on our own terms, doing it ourselves, making it our way.
The Navage Patch was born, and it became more than a blog.
It became our way of life.
And I am the luckiest guy on the planet for it.
Because my wife, my Handan, my Babes is the 8th wonder of my world. She has no equal, and nothing compares.
I love her so much, and I look forward to marking 64 more years as her husband and her babes and her best friend.
Happy Anniversary, My Babes!