How did you two meet? Tell us your story.
While stationed in Virginia for MOS school during his time in the Marine Corps, Jason’s roommate was a good friend of mine. During a college break I went to Virginia to visit my friend. I remember I was resting from the days travel when Jason walked into his room and then immediately walked back out. Jason explained later that he was confused by seeing a girl in his room. He realized he did have the correct room and came back in. I introduced myself. My friend had a girlfriend so instead of being the third wheel Jason was kind of put “in charge” to keep me company. I grew up with three brothers and was very much a tomboy; so after hanging out with me for a long weekend- watching football, talking about our favorite teams and a little pick up game with other Marines, I think Jason was impressed. We exchanged numbers and causally talked over the next few months. Little did we know that he was soon going to be stationed in San Diego. I was living in Los Angeles so we started dating and commuting from Los Angeles to San Diego to see each other. A year later we were engaged. The thought of planning a wedding was overwhelming so we decided to elope.
What do you love most about each other?
She said: What I love most about Jason is his selflessness. He puts our marriage and family before his needs. I believe it’s natural for everyone to be a little selfish so Jason putting me first is something I fall in love with over and over again.
He said: What I love most about Joanna is her genuineness. It’s not very common you find a friend that will highlight reality, no matter how painful or great. While not wanting to hurt people is a good quality, sometimes we forget that not being truthful about the bad things hurt people worse in the end. She always tells it how it is. To be honest, I really think my standards for everything have risen since meeting her. Even when I’m cooking, which is not often, her simple satisfaction is the best feeling. All production aside, though, the best part about this quality of hers is that when she says, “I love you”, I know she means it.
What have you learned in your years of marriage?
There’s many things we have learned but the most important thing we would say has been to shower each other with grace. Almost every marriage has it’s ups and downs but by showing each other grace we reap the benefits of our commitment. We have realized that a commitment is more then something we embrace when things are going great. We grew up in a world that teaches us to do what we think is best for us; If that means breaking off a commitment as sacred as marriage because we are unhappy then it’s ok. Jason and I chose to do something else. We chose to not focus on ourselves but on our marriage and children and in return have been blessed.