Rascal Flatts' Jay DeMarcus is sharing plenty of details about his personal life in his new memoir, Shotgun Angels: My Story of Broken Roads and Unshakeable Hope, including how he began dating his now-wife, Allison Alderson. When he first met Alderson, on the set of the video shoot for "These Days," Flatts' 2002 debut single from their sophomore Melt album, Alderson was already engaged to someone else, and wanted nothing to do with DeMarcus.
“I’ll be honest, I’m not really familiar with your music,” DeMarcus recalled Alderson saying in the book (via PEOPLE). “‘But I’ve heard your first single, ‘Waiting for Midnight,’ right?'”
“Actually, it’s ‘Praying for Daylight," DeMarcus answered. "I see you’re a really big fan, huh?”
DeMarcus meeting Alderson came at a fortuitous time, although neither of them knew it right away. One day before the video shoot for "These Days," DeMarcus had driven himself to the hospital with such a severe panic attack, he thought he was having a heart attack.
“I’d just turned 30, and the realization that I was alone was hitting me hard," DeMarcus shared, adding that he felt very single, and very alone. “I went to sleep and woke up with all that weight and anxiety on me. And little did I know, the very next day I would meet the girl who would become the mother of my children.”
DeMarcus was instantly smitten when he met Alderson, and equally devastated when she told him she was engaged to someone else.
“She was easy to talk to, had a warm and inviting smile, and made a very long day easier just by being there,” recalled DeMarcus.
Undeterred, the Ohio native had the idea to extend the "These Days" video shoot by having Alderson stand behind a chain link fence at night in the rain, which DeMarcus suggested solely to get more time with his new crush.
After the video shoot ended, at 3 a.m., Alderson did not return DeMarcus' subsequent phone call. But when they ran into each other a few weeks later, sparks began to fly.
"I’ll go to lunch with you, but that’s it," DeMarcus recounted Alderson told him. "And then you have to leave me alone. I’m getting married in four months, and, well, you just have to leave me alone.'”
Their lunch date lasted more than five hours, and ultimately Alderson canceled her wedding, and the couple has been together ever since, and are now the parents of two children, Madeline and Dylan.
DeMarcus' dating history with Alderson isn't the only personal story he shares in the book. The multi-instrumentalist also revealed he gave a daughter up for adoption, when his girlfriend of one month got pregnant and did not want to raise the child.
“Her mother, Maggie, didn’t want either one of us in her life," DeMarcus recounted. "That was a hard pill to swallow. I understand that sometimes life sends us reeling because of unexpected situations. But my heart in that moment, though scared, still desired to be in this beautiful child’s life.”
DeMarcus still hopes the child will someday find her way back to him.
“My heart finds satisfaction in knowing that she ended up with a wonderful family, but I’ve had to live with this my entire life,” said DeMarcus. “The adoptive family was supposed to give her a letter when she turned 14, explaining that I loved her, did not abandon her, and have tried several ways to make it possible to be in her life.”0comments
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Photo Credit: Getty Images/Erika Goldring