A burst pipe brought Stephanie O’Shea’s soulmate right to her doorstep — literally.
But the single mom of two has had to , due to the relatively tender age of beau Charlie, 29.
That puts her paramour eight years ahead of O’Shea’s oldest daughter, Zoe.
However, despite the age gap and familial misgivings, the Virginia-based lovers went ahead and tied the knot in 2019.
They have “never lost the spark,” according to O’Shea.
“I would say than many other long-term couples, it’s the best I’ve ever had,” the 42-year-old told NeedToKnow.co.uk.
“We still flirt and swat at each other’s bottoms whenever we walk through the room.”
In the beginning, young Zoe doubted the romance, calling her mom a “cougar.”
“My daughter’s comments are all in good fun, so I don’t mind,” said O’Shea. “They don’t always get along, but she respects my marriage.”
Despite being close in age, O’Shea said her 21-year-old college student and her 29-year-old husband have a different “level of maturity.”
The “loved up” couple have continued to defied the odds since the day of . That’s when Charlie, a plumber, was dispatched to Stephanie’s to remedy her home’s water damage.
They “hit it off immediately,” O’Shea recalled.
“Four months later, the water damage happened again, but I’d forgotten I had his number, so they sent someone else,” she said.
“He turned up afterwards to collect payment and we sat on the porch talking for hours.”
The mom said they were “finishing each other’s sentences,” and before they knew it, had — which took place just days later.
“I felt like I was talking to myself at his age, it was such a strong connection,” gushed O’Shea, who had already gone through a 16-year marriage before meeting Charlie and wasn’t in the market for a new relationship.
While apprehensive about their age difference, the pair ultimately decided it “doesn’t matter” because they “enjoy each other’s company,” making their relationship official within a month.
But then, O’Shea took a pregnancy test — and it was positive.
“I was thrilled and it was a wonderful surprise,” said O’Shea, who believed would make it difficult to have children. “Charlie just could not get the smile off his face.”
It was “shocking,” she said, because Charlie had sworn he didn’t want kids. Now, they share Lucas, 7.
Despite their rollercoaster romance, O’Shea said she’s found “true love” despite the “negative opinions” people might have.
“People keep saying: ‘You look so happy’ which is lovely to hear,” she said.
“Everyone has been really welcoming, including my former in-laws, who even came to our wedding and showered us with presents for the baby,” she added.
At the end of the day, he’s her “best friend” — even “all these years later.”
The pair are rarely apart, and she says she misses him when she leaves the house. When they aren’t together, though, they’re in constant communication.
“We are inseparable,” she said, “and I’m so glad the pipe burst.”