I met Mike through mutual friends a couple of years before we started dating. We started talking because he knew that I was a huge Kobe Bryant fan and one day he saw Kobe at our gym and messaged me to tell me. I rushed right over and had my first ever Kobe sighting. I was very grateful for Mike’s tip. After that, we started tagging each other in funny memes on Instagram which led to texting and then talking every day. We quickly realized we had a lot in common. Then, Mike asked me out on our first date and we’ve been inseparable ever since.
When Mike and I first started dating, I was very protective of my daughter, Heidi, who was only 14 months old at the time. I told Mike I wanted to take things slow because I didn’t want Heidi to get attached to him before I was certain our relationship would last. Mike was so patient and understanding with everything. I would have to pause in the middle of movies to change diapers or rock her back to sleep at 10 p.m. and I lacked the freedom to do ‘normal’ dating things or be spontaneous. I also never allowed Mike to spend the night at my house unless Heidi was at her dad’s. But Mike never seemed annoyed or inconvenienced by any of it.
In 2015, Mike and I got engaged and moved in together. That’s when Heidi’s relationship with Mike really began to blossom. Mike started taking a more fatherly role by doing things like tucking her in and kissing her as he left for work. That’s not to say we didn’t face challenges along the way, because we definitely did – there’s no instruction manual for this sort of thing! But we remained open and honest with each other and it was a beautiful journey to watch their relationship develop. It made me fall in love with Mike even more.
Over the years, Mike and I have also formed a friendship with Heidi’s father, who is still a big part of her life. After separating from her dad, it was always a goal of mine to have a friendship with him but to also provide my daughter with a good example of a relationship. I feel blessed I’ve been able to do both.
On our wedding day, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house when after Mike recited his vows to me, he knelt down to Heidi and recited vows to her as well.
“I vow to always be fair and honest with you. I promise to support you in every way I can. I promise to always hold your hand and brush your hair when you ask me to. I promise to tuck you into bed every night. I vow to show you how a man should treat a woman through my relationship with your mom. And above all else, I vow to protect you, care for you, and love you ‘so big’ forever.”
I was overwhelmed with emotion. It’s pretty special finding someone that loves you unconditionally, but to come as a package deal with a little one and have a man make a commitment to love her unconditionally as well is an absolute blessing.
Being married to Mike has been a dream. In June of 2017, we added to our sweet little family when we welcomed our baby boy, Hunter into the world. Mike is truly the ultimate dad in every sense of the way. It made me realize you shouldn’t marry a man unless you would be proud to have a son exactly like him. And I can honestly say that if Hunter turns out to be as wonderful as Mike, then the world will be gaining one heck of a human being.
I love this family of mine.