I only have to look at my wife and son to know that were it not for second chances my life as I know it would not exist. It's not just because I was married before, or that the deaths of my wife and children lay behind my reasons for leaving Croatia and coming to the United States.
Abby and I had a relationship not long after I accepted a permanent position at County, for far too many reasons, things didn't work out for us as a couple. Our break-up was a difficult one, we both said things we shouldn't have, things that were meant to hurt the other, and which, at least from my side, were almost immediately regretted. Over time we were able to repair the damage our words had done and I like to think we also succeeded in building a friendship far deeper than we might have had we not said what we did.
I don't think either Abby nor I realized that we'd progressed past the friendship stage again until we were already there, and I think in the early stages of that realization we were afraid of recognizing it. I know I found myself tip-toeing around the truth at first because I didn't want to take a chance of having things fall apart a second time.
I think we were both surprised to find out how much we both had changed once we finally allowed ourselves to trust our feelings and let whatever was going to happen, happen. Looking back now, I can see our early mistakes for what they were. I can see too, ways we might have been able to prevent things that had happened at that time, but, knowing that can only help me now, and as Abby and I encounter new obstacles, we will find ways to work through them together, as a couple, and as parents of a young son. Because of second chances, we are a family, for better or worse, till death do us part.