Andrew and Rodger Showing Off Their Love

Andrew and Rodger Showing Off Their Love

Andrew and Rodger met in the mid-1990s. Fast forward to February of 2018, they were engaged. And 15 months later they were married. Their journey signifies a mostly-rare path taken by gay men and it’s a path worth reading about.

So, wait – How did you actually meet?
We met in Mrs. Barr’s English class in 1996. We were best friends throughout middle school but lost touch when they both moved to different cities. Fast forward to MySpace days and the beginning of FaceBook, where we reconnected, by chance, through mutual friends. We learned that we both had recently come out and remained good friends through social media from that point on, both living in different cities and living out our 20s. Fast forward a few more years, one morning as Andrew was walking to his local coffee shop in Fort Worth, he randomly messaged Rodger to see how life was treating him. Rodger happened to be awake that early morning and responded. We met up that following weekend, the first time they had seen each other in person in over 10 years.

Andrew and Rodger Enjoy Each Other’s Company while visiting the Beach

Andrew and Rodger Enjoy Each Other’s Company while visiting the Beach

What was your first date like?
On our first date, we went on a nice stroll on the Katy Trail in Dallas then went to Eno’s, a wonderful Italian restaurant in the Bishop Arts District in Dallas. Afterwards, we went to the local shops and just enjoyed the day together.

What was the first impression of each other?
Andrew: I’ll never forget, we were in an incredible chocolate shop where they created these wonderfully different chocolates. Ones infused with chili peppers and caramels all the way to ones infused with mushrooms! I remember Rodger’s beautiful smile, he turned to me and he said “Isn’t this awesome?” And I remember at that moment, it definitely was. I soon realized I was embarking on a journey I had never truly been on before and, for the first time, I knew I wouldn’t be alone.

Is that when you realized you were meant to be together?
The minute we started dating and becoming “serious”, everything came so easy and felt so natural. There was never any hesitation and nothing ever felt forced. We always like to say, “we are simpatico.” So many times, we both would be thinking of each other and text or call at the exact same time. Everything from meeting friends and family for the first time to discussing our future, it just felt right.

Andrew and Rodger always have a smile on their face

Andrew and Rodger always have a smile on their face

And then you got engaged?
We drove up to Bar Harbor, Maine the first weekend of February 2018 and stayed at a quaint bed and breakfast. February in Maine can be brutal, and since it was off season in Bar Harbor, not many of the local shops and restaurants were open but some did remain open for the locals. Overall though, it was a sleepy time of year for that part of New England and it was as if we were in our own little winter wonderland. Right before we drove up, Bar had received about 2-3 feet of snow. Unbeknownst to Rodger, Andrew had planned this weekend out. The plan was to watch the sunrise atop Cadillac Mountain, which is in Acadia National Park in Bar Harbor. We soon found out that all roads and trails had been blocked due to the snowstorm. So we packed a big blanket and a thermos of hot coffee and went to the next best thing, the beach. To see the beach covered in fresh snow and to look out on the Atlantic Ocean was so beautiful, but bitterly cold. In Andrew’s mind, this wasn’t quite “THE” spot. So as the sun was coming out, we drove along a pass on the side of Cadillac Mountain, we came upon a beautiful spot that overlooked the ocean. It was surrounded by snow capped Balsam Firs and White Pine trees. We got out to take pictures and Rodger, with that beautiful smile of his, turned to me and said, ” Babe, I feel like I’m at the edge of the world!” My heart skipped a beat, multiple beats, this was it, THE place. I told Rodger I would take some pictures of him and then had Rodger turn towards the ocean to get some poignant shots (haha). That’s when Rodger turned back around, I was down on one knee with the ring box in my hand. Opened the box and popped the question.

Andrew and Rodger’s Wedding Invitation

Andrew and Rodger’s Wedding Invitation

Tell me about your wedding day!
Our wedding was in Fort Worth, Texas on May 3, 2019 at the stunning BRIK Venue. The atmosphere was palpable, filled with love, excitement, and sentimentality. Not only was the venue absolutely perfect, the people that work at BRIK made our special day the BEST DAY EVER! We love them and will forever have a special place in our hearts.

What was the emotion you felt on your wedding day?
Emotions definitely ran high on our wedding day! Like with any task that involves planning and executing on a time crunch, stress can easily take the drivers seat, but we had so many wonderful people, and an AMAZING wedding coordinator (Christy Matthews) that helped with the day of preparations. Everything flowed easily and quickly, made possible by our village. We just felt so much love and gratitude to everyone that got us to our special day.

So, what was your favorite part of the big day?
There were so many wonderful and memorable moments. We had all of our loved ones under one roof that came together to celebrate us and our love for each other, our hearts were overflowing! I can say for myself, seeing Rodger walk down the aisle, that beautiful memory will forever be etched into my mind.

Pure Bliss. Andrew and Rodger

Pure Bliss. Andrew and Rodger

Any advice to couples planning their wedding? What about advice on how to handle the actual wedding day?
Breathe. Take time for yourselves throughout the planning and on your wedding day. Even if it’s a few minutes alone, away from the festivities. Don’t focus too much on what needs to be done, for sometimes you could easily lose sight of what of what this day actually means and stands for, coming together in love and light. The day will feel like it went by in an instant, and it does! Take time to soak it all in and breathe.

How do your family or friends describe you now that you’re married?
I think our family and friends would still describe us as a married couple like they did before, a fun living, happy couple, who refuses to take ourselves too seriously. Family orientated and that we try not to take anything or anyone for granted. Still believing that each day is a gift and we still love to celebrate the small things in life as well as the big moments.

Did you go on a honeymoon?
We haven’t gone on a Honeymoon yet, still recouping finances and time off from work, but plans are in the works for an excursion to Hawaii.

Rodger and Andrew

Venue — Brik in Dallas, TX.
Wedding Coordinator — Christy Matthews
Photographer: Nicholas Leitzinger Photography – nicholasleitzinger.com

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