My Own Little Fairytale

Serendipity beach
Sihanoukville, Cambodia

In my post entitled The Black Swan I wrote about how I met my husband in a bar that used to reside on the beach in the photo. It was your classic tale of girl meets guy, they get totally plastered and share lots of funny anecdotes about their travels. We stayed up talking all night, then had a four hour long breakfast the next morning. It was clear there was a connection, but I was due to head out of Cambodia the following day and continue my adventures to Laos. Andy had just arrived in the country, having spent the past month in Laos himself. It was a quandary for sure, should I stay or should I go?

Eden 2004
that’s us sitting on the sand on the far right

I ended up staying and getting an extension on my Cambodian visa. I figured Laos could wait for another time, I was having too much fun to leave. Plus it would be interesting to see how things panned out with the guy I’d just met. Who incidentally looked just like Elija Wood (in his Frodo days) back then with his long curly hair. We had a great time together, and when it came to an end after six weeks we went our separate ways. I came home, and he went to stay with two of my dear friends in Australia as he had organised a one year working holiday visa, and they kindly said he could crash with them while he got himself sorted. 

Wedding Ren
my wedding day

This was all back when I still had my family in my life. My mother had convinced me to come home as a surprise for my half brother’s 21st birthday. I’ll spare you the gory details but he was awful to me. I came back on such a high, but within five minutes of being inside my mother’s house I made the decision to go out to Australia and see if my little holiday fling had the chance of turning into a fairytale. I would not allow my family the opportunity to wreck yet another good thing in my life. Less than two weeks after leaving each other, we were reunited in Melbourne. 

rare photo of us taken last month

Now please don’t think we lead the perfect life, or have the perfect relationship, because we really don’t and never have done. I cut ties with my family in our second year together, and it’s not an over exaggeration to say that I went to hell and back in the process. We broke up, got back together, broke up again and it looked at one stage like we would definitely not have a future. I guess some things are just written in the stars and meant to be though, because here we are eleven years and three kids later. Still going strong, and surviving to tell the (fairy)tale. 

This post was inspired by The Prompt: Cinderella. Click on the badge below to learn more. 

The Prompt


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Full time wife and mummy to three, home educator, blogger, wannabee chef and published author. Follow me on my journey through life...

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  1. mummytries says:

    My eldest really enjoys hearing stories about our travels. We honeymooned in India while I was pregnant with her and she absolutely loves this, but gets confused and thinks she lived in my belly when we were in Cambodia too, bless her xx

  2. mummytries says:

    Thanks Denise, I really would love to but am feeling a little blocked in the book writing department… in all honesty I just don’t have the time to write another book at the mo, the story will still be there when I do though! Hope all’s going well with you and you’re enjoying the new house.

  3. mummytries says:

    The shine wears off after eleven years and three kids, but it’s still there underneath it all 😉

  4. mummytries says:

    Thanks so much Tim 🙂

  5. mummytries says:

    That connection really doesn’t come along very often, and I know that some people never have it so count myself very lucky indeed!

  6. mummytries says:

    I love that sentiment Trista, it’s so apt!!

  7. mummytries says:

    Thanks Morgan, it does all sound rather fairytale-esque now xx

  8. mummytries says:

    Thanks lovely, we were really lucky to have found each other on that beach xx

  9. mummytries says:

    Thanks so much John! It was certainly a shock at first, we really did intend to part ways after six weeks, but just couldn’t let each other go when it came to the crunch.

  10. mummytries says:

    Thanks so much Tracy! We really don’t get to choose our extended families, but we get to create our own through our children which is a wonderful thing xx

  11. mummytries says:

    It really does, I am a huge believer in destiny xxx

  12. mummytries says:

    Thanks hon, I’m really lucky to have met such a fab guy at a point in my life that I really needed to xxx

  13. mummytries says:

    Thanks honey, he has certainly been a great influence in my life xxx

  14. mummytries says:

    Thanks hon, Andy and I are totally different but we balance each other out just perfectly xx

  15. mummytries says:

    Thanks Carol x

  16. mummytries says:

    It’s certainly been a long old journey, I’m just fortunate to have met my version of prince charming along the way!

  17. mummytries says:

    My hubby and I had had a little bit of a tiff before I wrote this, but writing it brought back so many happy memories I forgot to be mad at him! It was lovely to reminisce xxx

  18. mummytries says:

    Wouldn’t that be amazing! We must get together and talk SE Asia at some point lovely, can’t believe we have this in common too xx

  19. Oh this is lovely and I am so so happy you met your Prince Charming xxx

  20. Life is definitely not a fairy tale and I’m glad you’re nor sugar-coating it all. I found the start of your relationship a really interesting part of your book. Sounds like your other half has had a lot of positive influence in your life. You seem like such a nice couple! x

  21. Carol Cameleon says:

    Lovely pics and such a lovely tale, Renee x

  22. Real life really is far from a fairy tale, isn’t it? It’s tough, we have to make difficult decisions, and fight for what we want. Your relationship with your husband has a lovely happy ending, though 🙂 xxx #ThePrompt

  23. All fairy tales have their ups and down and albeit life is not one – what is meant to be really does conquer all! xxx

  24. Beautiful story albeit tinged with the sadness of your family troubles..
    We don’t get to choose our families but our lives are our own. I’m glad you’ve found happiness. Have to say…you make a beautiful bride. X

  25. That is quite a tale. A traveller romance working out and resulting in marriage and children! Must be quite rare indeed. Great to read such a story with a happy ending.

  26. You definitely got your fairytale. Lovely to see the threads of your story gathered here in one place, and I love the photo of you on your wedding day 🙂 Thank you so much for sharing with #ThePrompt x

  27. How brilliant hun! I’m so pleased for you. I think sometimes going through stuff together (or apart some of the time) makes a relationship stronger. You both worked very hard to stay together. I’m glad you got your happy ending. xx

  28. Love this! Amazing how certain people are brought into our life! I always tell my husband that every choice I made in life (whether good or bad) prepared me for the day I met him.

  29. It’s definitely a fairy tale in the modern sense. When you know, you just know, don’t you? And having that connection was so special, that whatever you went through, you were bound to make it through. Great story – the stuff of real fairy tales!

  30. What a beautiful story, Renee. Fairy tales are lovely but sometimes real life can be more beautiful still.

  31. Alex says:

    Two forces being pulled together by the universe.

  32. Beautiful story, a true fairytale!

    I do think you should write a novel, based on your life. You express your ups and downs so well. It would be gripping.

  33. Wow Renee, I was gripped from start to finish. What a fairy tale. I’m glad you set us straight by saying that nothing is perfect. A lovely, lovely story though, one that I’m sure your children will love to hear in the future. x

  34. I totally understand how a dysfunctional past can play a role in later relationships. I am glad you and your husband are going on and trying to make this work.

  35. I do love the story of how you met! It makes me smile and reminds me so much of my story too. Except we were in India as you know. Love looking back at old photos. You look beautiful on your wedding day. Great post. xxx

  36. Oh my goodness what a wonderful story and congratulations!!!! I can’t wait to meet you and talk about Cambodia! Funnily enough I never made it there because I loved Laos so much!!!! Perhaps one day I can take you to Laos and show you the sites and you can show me Cambodia!!

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