Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Meet the Bratzes

Welcome to the Bratz blog!  I'm Tanya Bratz and my husband is John.  I figure with the start of a New Year, I'd give a try to something new...with that said, hello blogging world treat me kindly!
I'll start off telling you how we became Mr & Mrs.  I'm 31 and he is 30, we were married on 10.11.12 (hehe...yep, it was on a Thursday), I live in WNC and he lives in Afghanistan.  Neither of us have ever been married and neither of us have children (in today's world, that at 30 yrs old is almost unheard of).  We looking forward to being able to live day-to-day lives together in Charleston in 2013.  
Rockefeller Center, New York
I grew up in a small town known as Marshall, NC and John became a resident there during our 8th grade year.  We were complete and total opposites in grade school and even though we only lived a mile apart from each other, we were total strangers.  Six years after high school John found me on MySpace (guess I can say good things do come from that site).  He tried so hard to convince me that I should let him take me out, but all his attempts failed, I had no interest at the time.  I only thought of him as the guy that I knew in high school and I knew that guy wasn't for me.  Little did I know that time would change my mind.  John began a career working as a civilian contractor so his time stateside was very limited, but we continued to keep in contact from time to time.  He enjoyed my photography and I enjoyed his details of life as a contractor.  In 2010, I finally decided to take him up on that offer for a date.  Through previous emails from earlier that year I knew that he would be home at the first of June (so I thought) so on 06/01/10, I emailed him and told him that I knew it had been awhile since we'd talked but I would love to see him while he was home.  To my disappointment, he had already been home for his R&R and was actually en route back to Afghanistan.  What horrible timing, right?!  But, as we discovered over the next few months, the timing was PERFECT.  Our emails quickly grew longer and more detailed with each day that passed, we're talking chapters in a novel size.  We talked about everything including the past, the present and our future goals and dreams.  Emails grew into phone calls and those phone calls would last for hours.  We seemed to always have something new to share or details that we wanted the other to know.  God's timing was proving to be impossible to deny, we were learning so much about each other daily.

On the plane, headed to Boston

As the months passed, I knew more than ever that I wanted to have that date with him.  Since he's a civilian contractor, time at home on R&R is precious and limited.  His cousin was getting married that year in Boston on New Years Eve.  He was planning his R&R around that time and wanted me to come with him!  How in the world could I say no, especially after spending the last few months talking to him daily and just knowing that he was it for me.  No first date needed, he was it, I knew it!  Our "first date" was a 10 day trip to Boston and New York followed up with a little weekend trip to Myrtle Beach, SC.  The night he was scheduled to fly into Asheville there was a snowstorm that left his flight cancelled and him stranded in Atlanta.  He was so determined to see me that night, so he rented a car and I waited for hours at the airport.  FINALLY, he was home.  I saw my future coming through the airport doors headed to give me the first of many hugs and kisses!  Things were so incredibly perfect, it seemed like we'd always been a pair and I was just waiting for him to return from a long trip.  Over the 6 months of emails and phone calls, we had time to get to know each other so amazing well.

After his R&R was over, it was back to the emails and phone calls and anticipation till we could see each other once again.  Our conversations of the future naturally started to included each other.  It's weird thinking back about it, because there was never any official proposal we just knew.  Once he started looking at rings and getting ideas from me, he decided that it was time to call my dad.  He called my dad from Afghanistan and asked for his blessing.  My dad told him that he was not giving me away, but he didn't see any problem with him joining our family.  So, in November of 2011 when he came home for R&R we had another vacation planned and a special stop marked on the itinerary, a jewelry store outside of Orlando!  There, I had the most amazing diamond ring placed on my finger.  I still think I need to pinch myself every time I look at it!

As R&R's always tend to do, it passed entirely too quickly.  Once again he was off to Afghanistan, but the wedding planning was on.  We both had different ideas of what we wanted on our wedding day.  I was the girl that never dreamed of ever being married period so the thought of having a big wedding was never a thought in my mind.  He on the other hand, like the idea of having a big wedding and inviting all of our friends and family.  Once the planning got into full force, we both discovered that even though, we'd love to invite everyone, it just wasn't feasible.  So a small wedding was in the works and I would become Mrs Bratz in 2012 while John was yet home again on R&R. (more on the wedding later)

So here we are the beginning of 2013 and I'm a deployed contractor's wife.  There's lots that I've left out in "our story" but I'm sure I'll get to those during the days that bring him closer to home.  I  long for the day to have him home with me.  It's not easy, this lifestyle we live, but we know that it's worth it.