I never dreamed of being swept off my feet by my future husband nor longed for a fairytale ending. I’m a realist and knew from a young age relationships took hard work. Never did I imagine I would find my forever from swiping right on NYE 2017.
How it all started:
I remember telling my friends at the end of 2017 that I was ready to start dating again but didn’t know where to start. At that time in my life going out to bars wasn’t my scene, so meeting someone that way wasn’t an option. My circle of friends was pretty small and I honestly didn’t want to invest time on someone setting up a blind date where who knows how it could turn out. Off to Tinder I went, thinking it couldn’t hurt to try one more time. After an awkward 1st date at Biagias in CU with a guy who didn’t believe in Jesus, I was sure that this dating thing just wasn’t for me at the time. Once again I trusted my friends who were cheering me on to be patient with the process and decided to keep my account active.
My 2017 NYE plans were hanging out with one of my friends at his Grammys, playing cards and having some drinks. With a couple straw-ber-ritas flowing I had to check in on my Tinder. Little did I know that the cute guy with a blue button up shirt, side-profile selfie, wearing diamond earrings was going to be my future husband. It’s also to be noted that I almost instantly took a screenshot of his picture and sent it in my family group chat with my mom and sister. That night Matthew and I both swiped right on each other. If you’re not familiar with Tinder- in order to be able to message someone on the app both people have to swipe right on each other’s profile. You then have 24hrs for someone to message the other person or access to talking to them goes away. Matthew’s 1st message to me I believe was “I like your freckles”. Which caught my attention right away because my freckles always make me stand out so I have a love/hate relationship with my freckles. We messaged through the night which led to getting each other’s phone numbers. It was within a couple hours of talking that we had planned our 1st date for the next day(January 1st) at Scotty’s Brewhouse in Champaign.
Our 1st day went exceptionally well. Matthew right away opened his heart up to me on our date allowing himself to be vulnerable by letting me know he was ready for a serious relationship. We both agreed we were tired of wasting our time on short term relationships with people who weren’t ready to make a commitment. That night we closed down the restaurant and ended up going to Starbucks just down the road for hot chocolate so we could keep talking. My favorite part of the date to tell people is that as we told each other goodbye, standing outside, Matthew gave me a side hug..you know the kind of hug you give to a distant cousin or old friend from high school lol. Three months into dating I knew God had sent my husband to me. I know how crazy that sounds but I remember dancing together at his cousin’s wedding and I said to myself “I’m going to marry this man one day”.
The big question:
Tuesday, September 28th was like any other day. It was one of those long days where the moment I got home from work I poured myself a glass of red wine. Most nights when I get home I change right into my pajamas, that night was a pink tie dye night dress from target. I’ve gotta paint the picture for you guys with all the details because it really helps build the setting. Then I went to the kitchen to start making pork chops, rice and corn for dinner. Matthew was sitting at the kitchen table wearing a white t-shirt and basketball shorts, talking to me about his day while I was cooking. While we were eating dinner Matthew asked me if I thought our friends were going to get engaged soon because they recently got family pictures taken. With probably the most serious face ever I looked at him and said “they better not be before us!”. We have a few couples in our friends group that haven’t been dating as long as us and I always tell Matthew I’d be angry if they get engaged before us. Of course I’d be so happy for them but it has been something I’d joke around with him about. He then went on to ask me, if I could plan out how he would propose, how would I want him to ask the question. Now all jokes aside, I’ve in depth thought about this. As a runner I have a few “stories” I play in my head to help keep me from getting bored. One of those being how Matthew would propose and it is very detailed. For times sake I won’t write that all out. After telling Matthew his response was something like… okay so I have to find someone to take pictures, record the proposal, and get our friends there..that’s a lot! I looked him in the eyes and told him that his proposal doesn’t need to be something big and crazy. That the moment has to be right for him, and all that mattered to me was spending the rest of my life with him. After dinner was over I was washing dishes and Matthew said “I’m surprised you’re not playing any music on Alexa”. When I’m cleaning I’ll play music typically so jokingly I asked Alexa to play the wedding song since we had been talking about getting engaged. Alexa couldn’t figure out what song I was talking about so I asked her to play A Thousand Years by Christina Perri from the Twilight: Breaking Dawn Part 1- when Bella is walking down the aisle at her wedding. At some point while I was washing dishes Matthew went into our game, which I assumed he was just getting his xbox turned on to play video games. When he came to the kitchen he said “ come on let’s dance, you can finish cleaning up later”. I started laughing and said “what?…we never dance together”. As we were attempting to dance I kept laughing because it just wasn’t something we typically did. The next thing I know he’s reaching into his pocket and gets down on one knee. Matthew looked up at me with red eyes crying saying “I’m sorry I can’t wait any longer, will you marry me?” At that very moment I was in a mix of crying and laughing because I couldn’t comprehend what was happening. I of course said yes!
How Matthew asked me to be his wife was perfect. An intimate moment, just him and I…in our pajamas, it was everything I could have ever asked for. I can’t thank God enough for sending me the man I get to spend forever with. Engaged life has felt like a dream, I feel our relationship blossoming each day. Here’s to future Mr. and Mrs. Cater…let the wedding planning begin!