MACHELLE: A true romantic at heart, I’ve never given up hope that there was someone out there for me–my soul mate. I’ll be 46 this year and I started to wonder if I would ever find him? I’d been in relationships before but never married. In late October 2007, after coming home from my brother’s wedding, I was determined to not be the only remaining single sibling! So one night after seeing a commercial for eHarmony, I signed up. I really wasn’t sure what to expect, but I hoped if I stayed focused on what I wanted and was open to what came my way that it would be a positive experience.
As fate would have it, my Mr. Right was just 60 miles north of me, embarking on the same search. Within that first week, we were sent each other’s profile. By Thanksgiving we were communicating several times a day and by end of November we were spending hours on the phone. Talking about everything from family, values, careers and what we were looking for in a relationship. There was something about Dennis right from the beginning that spoke to my heart. As we continued through the communication process – it was amazing to me how easy it was for us to relate and enjoy one another. By the time we met face-to-face, just 1 month later it was as if we’d been on 10-plus dates!
I will never forget our first meeting. I was so nervous, but Dennis has a way of making me feel so at ease and at home when I’m with him. So we talked on the phone the whole we were driving to the meeting spot. By the time I was in the parking lot, I was no longer nervous, just so excited to finally meet him in person! It sounds weird, but I sensed the moment he was in the parking lot and when he pulled up next to me, I knew it was going to be a special moment. He greeted me with a beautiful bouquet of roses and we instantly gave each other a hug and a kiss. I remember thinking (honestly) I’ve waited all my life for you. Our first date was amazing and I guess we gave off an aura, because several strangers we encountered throughout the day commented on how much in love we looked. Things moved very fast after that day… he came to Dallas over Christmas and met my family. I knew when they all instantly loved him that it was indeed the real thing. We’ve been inseparable ever since.
It often feels surreal, the way I feel. The only way I can describe it is I finally feel complete and have my life in order according to priorities. I no longer am trying to fill the void. All these years – I sensed there was something missing and now I know what … it was the fulfillment of giving and receiving unconditional love and true partnership.
DENNIS: I was never much of a bar scene person and certainly didn’t feel that was the right way to go at this point. So one night I signed up for eHarmony in hopes of finding a person with whom I could develop a relationship. One of my filter parameters was distance, and even though I set a 50 mile radius, I received several possible matches from as far as 300 miles away. In hindsight, this was a blessing or magic of fate because Machelle also set her distance for 50 miles when in reality we were 60 miles apart. After sifting through profiles of possible matches, I came across one profile from Bentonville, Arkansas that caught my eye, even though it was outside the geographic filter and also without a picture… there was something about this one that compelled me to follow-up for more information. I still had no real expectations, but for some reason, this one stood out.
As soon as we started the email communication stage, it quickly became apparent that Machelle was the most interesting match I had and I was very excited to continue the path of getting to know her. After a multitude of very interesting email correspondence we finally reached the phone stage of communication and at that point it was obvious to both of us there was something about this that excited us both. We had no trouble at all communicating. I loved that phase of the process – even though I wasn’t getting enough sleep I was opening up myself and allowing her to know me in a way no one ever had before. We both knew that we had to meet face-to-face and it was both exhilarating and nerve-racking at the same time to come together with this person that I had spent so much time with both in written and verbal communication.
I will never forget how overwhelmed I was with seeing her in person. She was everything that I had dreamed she would be. That first hug and kiss was very special and I could sense it was for her too. As we walked across the parking lot, our hands found each other and it just felt right, like it was meant to be. Machelle was in my heart that very first day and it’s only grown stronger every day since.
I’m so much happier now than I have been in such a long time. Even though Machelle and I have talked about how I wished we could have been together much earlier in our lives I realize now that it probably did take everything that’s happened before this to make this possible now. I’m at the stage in my life where I can appreciate this relationship and understand how truly blessed I am to have found Machelle and have the opportunity to be in a marriage with a strong foundation of respect, love, and passion. Another great thing that has occurred as a result of this relationship and the eHarmony process – is that it has actually brought me and my children closer and our relationships are better; which I attribute to my new-found happiness and stronger communication.
Appropriately – our first dance was “At Last” and last dance was “Ever Lasting Love.” We’re having a blast in our new phase of life. A funny note… no matter what we’re doing… when we hear an eHarmony commercial come on, we always stop and watch and every time- it makes us smile.