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Couple Buy House Two Weeks After Going On Their First Date

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Couple Buy House Two Weeks After Going On Their First Date

A woman reunited with her school crush through a Facebook message after years apart and went on to have a whirlwind romance with him - buying a house two weeks after their first date and having three babies in just nine months.

One child was born in September 2016 and then twins followed in early June 2017. Talk about efficient time management.

Rachael Kirkwood, 34, first spotted her now husband, Paddy, 35, in the corridors of the secondary school they both attended in Manchester two decades ago.

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Overcome with shyness, she never plucked up the courage to speak to him, instead admiring him from afar and sending anonymous Valentine's Day cards every February 14th.

They both left school and began their adult lives, with Rachael even living in New Zealand for two years and having a son, Oliver, now seven.

But in April 2015, she sent Paddy - who also has a son from a previous relationship - a message after stumbling upon his Facebook profile.

After meeting for a first date around a week later, things moved fast, with the pair buying a house together after two weeks, getting engaged in July, married in December and having three babies in nine months. More than some people achieve in a lifetime, all in the space of a year.

The couple's twins, Niall and Luke. Credit: PA Real Life
The couple's twins, Niall and Luke. Credit: PA Real Life
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After that first Facebook message, the pair spoke every day and the following week Paddy asked Rachael the question she'd longed to hear ever since she was a teenager: 'Want to go on a date?'

From then, the pair spent virtually every day together and two weeks later, paddy mentioned he was house-hunting. He suggested she join him for a viewing of the property - near to where she was living.

She recalled: "He asked me what I thought of the place, and I told him I loved it. Then he turned to me and said, 'I don't want to get it unless you move in too.' I thought, 'Is he mad?' It had only been two weeks. But part of me just knew it was right."

So, though her family and friends thought she was 'nuts', Rachael agreed, and the couple jetted off to Madrid the following week to celebrate.

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There they discovered the offer they'd put in had been accepted, meaning they could return to the UK to start their new life together. Just six weeks after that, Paddy had another important question for Rachael. Paddy was not messing around.

Paddy and Rachael in Paris where he proposed. Credit: PA Real Life
Paddy and Rachael in Paris where he proposed. Credit: PA Real Life

"He proposed to me in Paris. It was like something from a fairy tale," she said. "People thought it was way too fast and told me it wouldn't last, but I was sure we were meant to be together."

Shortly before their trip to Paris, Rachael had discovered she was pregnant, meaning she had gone from single to engaged and expecting within just three months.

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She was delighted but, sadly, things weren't meant to be. At around 12 weeks, she raced to hospital after feeling dizzy, where a scan revealed she was experiencing a molar pregnancy.

The condition occurs when a lump of abnormal cells, rather than a healthy foetus, grows inside the womb. That meant that - heartbreakingly - Rachael's baby had to be removed.

Looking back, Rachael said she would never have got through the ordeal without Paddy, who she married that December in Paris, in front of 60 loved ones.

She explained: "We hired a boat afterwards and sailed down the Seine, past the Eiffel Tower. The way we saw it, we wanted to be together, so there was no point in waiting - even though we hadn't even been together a year. When you know, you know."

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Then in early 2016 - a month after their wedding - two little blue lines, later followed by reassuring scans, changed all that, and the pair's daughter Mollie, now two, was born that September.

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Rachael fell pregnant again, much sooner than expected, just six weeks after having Mollie. She then discovered that she was having identical twins.

"We couldn't believe it. We were basically doubling the size of the family," she said. "At first, I was terrified about how we'd cope, but Paddy said it was like winning the lottery. I knew then that we'd get through it together."

The babies, Niall and Luke, were born early in June 2017, meaning Rachael had given birth three times in nine months - and the children will all be in the same school year, when the time comes.

Incredibly, despite the fact she was taking the contraceptive pill, Rachael soon added to her brood once again, with baby Orla, born in November 2018.

Life for the Kirkwoods now is hectic but happy and the fairy-tale romance inspired Rachael to set up a charity called Wish For A Wedding, which helps provide weddings to couples dealing with a terminal illness.

Given that she's been through so many different types of pregnancies, she also wants to help others, and so has set up a blog, where she shares advice and candid posts, especially aimed at those who may feel isolated as they don't have many friends with children.

Featured Image Credit: PA Real Life

Topics: Children, Dating, Community, UK

Rebecca Shepherd
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