Fixer Upper stars Chip and Joanna Gaines are currently celebrating 16 years of marriage that has resulted in giving them a house full of kids and several thriving businesses—but there was a life for Chip before Joanna, and he’s talking about it.
“I dated girls whose goal in life was to get married and have kids,” Chip Gaines says in a new interview with People magazine. “They had it all planned out, but I was too selfish. It was about me and what I wanted to do, and I didn’t have anything tying me down.”
In fact, Chip goes on to say that he wasn’t the type of guy back in the day who was even looking to settle down. But then, he met Joanna.
“It felt like there was this real transition,” Chip said about meeting Joanna back in 2001 at his dad’s Firestone shop in Waco, Texas. “I matured and grew up. It just kind of clicked in my brain, ‘This is going to work.’”
But it took a while to adjust to marriage.
“I had to make a lot of changes,” he says. ”I had to be a better person. But when I thought about the idea of being an 80-year-old man sitting on a rocking chair with my beautiful wife, and for she and I to have made it [that far], I got really excited.”
Today, the Gaines duo is wildly successful. Between raising five kids, managing their various businesses in Waco, Texas and preparing to launch their own TV network, the two are seemingly just getting started.
But, of course, Chip says everything they have is because of Joanna: “She’s the one that makes the whole thing go around.”