Hillary and I didn’t go on to JDate looking for soul mates, as we were just hoping to find people to have fun with, but soul mates are what we did find in each other.
Hillary had tired of the dating scene and had been unlucky in love, so she took the summer of 2009 off and went to study Spanish in Ecuador for two months. After unsuccessful, post-divorce relationships, which started on other dating websites, I decided to go to JDate and try my luck there. We were both looking for new Jewish friends.
As an Englishman in NY, I found myself lucky enough to get a few responses, but it took about three weeks before CurlyGringa sent me a message. We communicated for about a week through JDate chat, email and on the phone before we decided to meet in person.
I lived in Upper Manhattan and Hillary lived in Riverdale, where coincidentally I was planning on moving, so we were close and had other things in common.
We planned to meet for a coffee on an October afternoon at a favorite local hangout. I put on a nice clean shirt and got there early to get a nice table with a view of the front door so I could see Hillary arrive. Hillary arrived a little late, dressed for a good night out, which is what she had planned to do later anyway.
I was excited about meeting her as I was hopeful that we would get on as well in person as we had been online and on the phone. A cup of coffee turned into a few hours of really good conversation and good company.
When we left each other, we both felt good. I sent her a text message thanking her for the date and I think I embarrassed her at her night out with friends.
A week later we met for Sunday brunch, and after our meal Hillary and I both felt that something good was happening. About a month later we were seeing each other exclusively.
We did not meet each other’s family until we had been together for six months and that was also when we took our first vacation together. We both realized on that stay to a spa resort in Georgia that we were in love and wanted to be together. We decided that when the time was right for both of us, we would move in together. This summer, Hillary moved into my apartment. And just a few weeks ago, just before Rosh Hashanah, we got engaged.
We know that although we have things in common and things we love to share, we also know there are differences, sometimes in taste and opinion. As partners we have learned to be aware of these and try not to get upset by them. We love and support each other and know that we will be there for each other for now and for the future.
Both our maternal grandmothers passed away a few years ago about the same time and we feel that they are somewhere planning our futures together.
We are to be married in August of next year in front of friends and family from across the globe.
Thank you JDate for helping to bring us all together.
Hillary and Joel
Riverdale, New York