After giving up my childhood intuition of some day marrying a Frenchman and living in France, I enjoyed my single life as a university student and young professional. Many months later, on one of the rare nights that I was alone with nothing to do, I saw a handsome, glasses wearing Frenchman was interested to meet me on HotorNot.com. (click to read our HotorNot.com story)
Weeks after our initial internet meeting we fell in love at first sight and have been together ever since. His family loved me. My family loved him. Two years later, we were married in May of 2008. I walked down the aisle wearing his mother’s vintage Yves Saint Laurent wedding gown; the confirmed sign of our union.
Around the time of our wedding, we were still living in the U.S. and were hit pretty hard during the great recession. He was downsized from his high earning corporate position and together, we faced the existential question, “What do we want to do with our lives now?” Did he want to continue the route of the comfortable international executive or finally live his dream of making action sports products? Since I worked primarily by phone and internet, I didn’t really care where we lived as long as my new, French husband was happy. My spiritual job at that point was to help him shape the beginning of his new career and our new life as husband and wife.
A year later in 2009, after our second wedding in France, the in-laws generously sponsored our honeymoon along the cote d’azur. While dining on the balcony of their beach house, we overlooked the Mediterranean and looked back at each other and asked, “Why don’t we take our chances in France?”
I believed if God had granted me the French man, then living in France was only the next logical step. At this point in our lives, there was nothing holding us back in the States and we certainly had little to lose. As soon as we returned to Florida, we decided to move to France and begin a new life. No more than a month and a half later, our things were packed into a container on a ship bound for France and we were saying goodbye to our old life, friends, and family in the U.S.. I looked down on the Miami coast as our Air France flight headed toward Paris thinking, “This is it. I’m living my dream.” The rest is history: He’s now doing his dream job in action sports and we’re living in one of France’s most beautiful and culturally rich regions.
The journey of moving to France and getting situated was and is by no means easy, simple, and not for the faint of heart. Each day was full of paperwork, temperamental government workers, French lessons, and frustrations. Some days even warranted tears and a longing for the American lifestyle and conveniences that I had lost. However, there is always the inevitable sobering moment reminding me of how much more I’ve gained while living here.
The path that I’ve walked and continue to explore has required me to grow up and to change as a wife and as a person. It’s full of stumbling blocks and challenges which have been balanced by many rewards, like getting to fall asleep next to the witty French, four-eyed surfer boy I was destined to love in my new country.
Have you ever had inspiring, life changing moments or dreams that have brought you to your present reality? Share your story!