Two preschool sweethearts who were separated at five years old became reunited on social media and got married.
Natalie Crowe Tatman and Austin Tatman met back in preschool in Ocala, Florida, and soon after became inseparable, spending the majority of their time together, according to PEOPLE. They would often go on class trips and play dates, often in Austin Tatman’s toy Jeep Wrangler.
“At five years old, our parents considered us soulmates,” their wedding website read. “We basically did everything with one another. From trick-or-treating to driving around in our little electric Jeep Wrangler, there was never a time we wanted to be apart.”
Crowe told PEOPLE in an interview that the two just somehow became best friends, and even their parents noticed. According to their wedding website, the friendship between the two of them wasn’t something that their parents created or planned, and as a matter of fact, the parents of the couple didn’t meet until the two became best friends.
“It’s strange when you’re that age—you don’t usually hang out with the opposite sex,” Crowe said. “But from when we were 2 until we were 5, we were constantly together.”
According to PEOPLE, the evidence that they were meant to be spanned from before they met—the two had the same due date, which fell on Valentine’s Day, but Tatman was born two weeks earlier than his due date, while Crowe was born two weeks after her due date.
Their parents, after noticing their children’s bond, became friends and kept memories of the two children since the beginning. Crowe said that her parents never failed to remind her of her childhood sweetheart. Crowe told PEOPLE that even though her own memories of her childhood with Tatman was fuzzy, the collection of photos from when she was young kept the moments fresh in her mind.
“I have very faint memories, but our parents have told us many stories,” Crowe told the media outlet. “Like on Halloween in 1999, Austin held my hand in the car on the way to trick-or-treating. Those are little things that our parents tell us, where they knew, ‘This is insane that they’re interacting like this.'”
According to the photos that her parents shared with her, Crowe said that every picture they had featured the two of them together—they were always together.
According to PEOPLE, despite Crowe’s fuzzy memories, there was one singular moment that she remembered very vividly—the last time the two were together at the age of five, before she had to move away. Crowe said that her parents got divorced around that time, and she, along with her brother and sister, had to move with her mother to Conneticut.
“I remember the very last day that I saw him, not knowing that I wouldn’t see him for over a decade,” Crowe said in the interview. “My last memory of him is [when] we made Rice Krispy treats in his parents’ kitchen … and then we were separated.”
For the longest time, the two hadn’t contacted each other, but Crowe said that she would always think of him. According to PEOPLE, she would ask her mother about Tatman around the age of 8 and 10, and her mother told her that if she thought about him, chances, he was thinking of her too. However, the two didn’t have any means of communication with each other.
This changed 12 years after they separated when Crowe stumbled across an address book that belonged to her mother and immediately found Tatman’s name in the T section.
“I knew his last name started with a T, but I don’t know why—I still have no idea to this day why—I went to his name out of all the names that were in there,” Crowe said. “This thing was full.”
Immediately after she found Tatman’s name and address, she felt like she needed to reconnect with her old friend, and searched for his name on Facebook. The two didn’t share any mutual friends, but she knew that it was him when she saw his picture. Wasting no time, she sent a message to him. She was surprised to learn that he also remembered her and all the memories that he spent making with her back when they were in preschool.
According to the wedding website, the two talked to each other, and Crowe told Tatman that she would be going to Florida to visit her father in two weeks. She also found out that he only lived a few miles away from her father. The two families reconnected, and the two soulmates were together again after 12 years.
“Ever since that time, we’ve been together,” Crowe told PEOPLE. “It was like the second I saw him, it was a friendship that had come back to life instantly.”
However, that friendship soon sparked into something more. They had gone on a date previously, but it wasn’t until their second date that they realized they loved each other. The two rekindled their friendship not long ago, but were already deciding that they were going to marry each other, despite not knowing when.
After forming a relationship, the two went off to their separate schools. They still had a relationship, except this time, it was a long-distance one. When they finally graduated from their respective colleges, Tatman asked Crowe to marry him, in front of everyone, including friends and family in August 2017.
And on April 19, 2019, the two became husband and wife. They had a wedding ceremony at the Mulberry in New Smyrna Beach, Florida. They even recreated their childhood pictures, playing in Tatman’s Jeep Wrangler, although their recreation was set in Tatman’s red Jeep. According to Crowe, the Jeep was her favorite part.
Crowe is an event planner and she planned the wedding herself, and according to PEOPLE.
“After we had picked the place we were gonna get married, that’s when it was like ‘I’m literally marrying my preschool sweetheart.’ This is insanity,” Crowe said.
“But looking back on it, if we hadn’t moved and I had grown up with Austin, I think it would have been a lot different … I don’t know if we would’ve been together.”
She told PEOPLE that there was a reason why everything happened as it did. According to the media, she said, “there’s a reason I went through my mom’s archives and found an address book. And there’s a reason that we went to separate colleges. It was kinda crazy how everything came together so perfectly, and it still doesn’t make sense to me to this day.”