In the run to Saint Valentine's Day, we're indulging our gushy side and reveling in beautiful Irish loves stories such as these two IrishCentral readers who first met when they were only seven and eight years old.
Our families go back three generations, being friends and both families are from Ireland. They lived, worked in the same town and even hung out in the same local town bar. They belong to the same local town swim club and even sat near each other so we as babies were side by side.
My great grandparents had 13 kids and both my parents came from a family of ten so I was basically related to three-quarters of the town of Clifton Heights, Pennsylvania.
When I was seven and Christopher was eight-years-old, he was a football player and I a cheerleader. I asked my mom if she knew his family and also to make sure he wasn't a 3rd or 4th cousin I wasn't aware of! She knew his family and no I wasn't related, yay! I told her I thought he was cute.
The next football game there we were with our moms behind us introducing us to each other. I have always stated that day on the football field we exchanged hearts and to this day he has never asked for it back.
Fast forward to our pre-teenage years. We would hang out and quickly became best friends. Christopher would walk me home and always hold my hand. I asked one day why he held my hand. His response was, “To keep you safe.”
He attended an all-boys Catholic high school and I attended (right next door) an all-girls Catholic high school. We went to each other's proms, mixers, and other dances together.
Before my senior year, Christopher broke my heart and we went our separate ways. We each married other people and had kids, divorced and reconnected via Facebook. Even though we were away from each other all those years we never stopped thinking of each other nor did we ever stop loving each other.
When we did reconnect almost two years ago and started talking about our life experiences, it was odd that they ran parallel to each other. We lived or worked in the same town, but never saw each other. We went to the same bars, clubs, food stores, malls but never encountered each other.
When I did reconnect with Christopher he turned me onto Irish music. The band that he really likes is "Black 47." I quickly became a huge fan as well. We went to concerts, various venues and plays involving the band and/or Larry Kirwan.
Christopher became good friends with Larry and started a group on facebook called Fans of Celtic Crush. This groups also goes hand-in-hand with Larry's radio program on Sirius radio called Celtic Crush. Black 47 had a concert in New York back in 2013 on New Year's Eve in Connolly's Irish Pub.
See my favorite Black 47 song is "Funky Ceili" and while the band was playing this song on now New Years Day (1/1/2014) ... Christopher asked me to marry him! The band saw, people around us saw and it was the most magical proposal ever!
Christopher and I got married in Chicago on Jan 1, 2014.
He has made our dreams come true.
Do you have an Irish love story you'd like to share with IrishCentral ahead of St. Valentine's Day? You can sign up to be a contributor on IrishCentral and submit your story.
*Originally published in 2014.