I will quickly admit that I am a Match.com veteran. I feel like Internet dating is the new millennium's version of meeting someone at a bar. It is slightly embarrassing, but it works. Before I met Greg through Match, I had two serious relationships. One lasted 6 years and the other 4 years. After the second one ended, I decided to try Internet dating in 2003. I spent two years sifting through profiles, composing e-mails and going out on dates, while friend after friend was making wedding plans. I set a goal of one date a week and was able to accomplish it with an honest profile and pictures, so there were no surprises when I met someone in person. With Match, I finally got gotten my groove and it was the first time I dated several people at once. I am an introvert that works really really hard at being an extrovert. The Internet allowed me to show people who I am without the awkwardness of a first in person meeting. It was a fun time, but hard at the same time. The more I dated the more I got my heart broken and the more I had to break someone else's heart. Each date was the promise of something new that ended 99% of the time in one or the other scenarios previously mentioned.
However, after each date or relationship I picked myself up knowing there were more profiles to review and with a new promise. At the end of 2005, I met Greg the Monday before Christmas. By the time Valentine's Day rolled around, we had been our several times, but had not formally decided to be exclusive. However, we were having a good time and it felt promising, but I had had "that feeling" before, so I was still a bit guarded. Espesically, when he asked me to do Valentine's on the 13th instead of the actual day because he had league tennis match on the actual night. My guarded mind thought it was a bit suspicious, but we had not had "the talk" yet, so I went along with it.
He made plans at a romantic Italian restaurant with the best handmade pasta. I gave him a small gift when we got there and he gave me a card. We had a great time and wonderful conversation. Not wanting the night to end, we decided to go back to his place for a drink. He asked me to come to his car first to get my present before we headed to his place nearby. It had started raining (seattle in winter = rain, idiot) and I had forgotten my hat, so I was worried that my hair was starting to frizz (very lame). So I was a bit distracted when he handed me a box of chocolates still in the red cellophane wrapping. I quickly kissed and thanked him and told him I would meet him at this place while running towards my car to get out of the rain. Once we got to his place he handed me the chocolates from the box in a Ziploc bag. Confused, I took it, but did not question it. I guess I was still worried about my hair (what an idiot). We had a drink and talked for awhile before we decided to end the evening for a few reasons. We had not had "the talk" yet and I had been clear about wanting to wait to give up the goods, plus it was a work night. The evening ended well.
The next morning as I was getting ready for work, I moved the box of chocolates and heard a rattling noise that did not seem right. My first thought was "oh s*#@ what did I miss?". I ripped off the wrapping and lifted the lid to the chocolate box. Inside I found all of my favorite things instead of chocolate. A box of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese (I love it!), a gift certificate to my favorite burger place, a gift certificate to Nordstrom, two different small stuffed animals and a box of tiny sweetarts! (I guess food is the way to my heart and bad junk food at that.). It was so thoughtful and sweet, and I had been such a tool the night before worrying about my hair that I did not open it even after he handed me the bag of chocolates from inside. I immediately called and left him a message apologizing for being such a tool and thanking him so much for the thoughtful gift!!! It was the first time that I realized that this guy was different and maybe I should let my guard down a bit. I am lucky that even 4 years later he is still that thoughtful!
Online dating taught me many lessons that I have been able to go back to through this fertility journey. It taught me about resilience and picking myself up after heartbreak. It showed me that it really does take just one even though it is annoying to hear. Even though I watched friend after friend pass me by, I can say with such confidence that the man I got was so worth the wait.
Yesterday afternoon I had a small breakdown that I was not feeling anything and convinced this cycle did not work. (I know it is still way too early for a breakdown.) Greg was great as usual about it and said some many sweet things that made me fall in love with him even more. I asked God for a sign, while Greg was talking me down. Later that afternoon, we went for a walk in the neighborhood after a heavy downpour cleared. As we approached the lake there was not one but two rainbows in the sky reflecting off the water (My crappy camera phone did not really get a good picture of the second one. You can barely see it in the above picture, but I swear it was there.). It sounds super cheesy, but it was true. God is trying to tell us something. I am hoping those rainbows just like the thought Valentine day gift were signs that God is taking care of me again and I need to let my guard down for it to come to me.