His Version: In late summer of 2015 I met the woman that would eventually become my girlfriend, now fiancé, and soon to be future wife. At the time, it had been a while since I had a serious relationship – I was mostly pouring my time into my job and hobbies such as firearm collecting, golf, gaming, the typical bachelor related things. I had a respectable job at a well-known company where I was making pretty good money to be 25 years old. I got to travel all over the US and visit places I’d never seen, meeting C level executives at multimillion dollar corporations – things were going well for me. However, there was something missing in my life. A void that I prayed would be filled eventually by the Lord when the time was right. Ever since I was younger I always thought I would marry early and have kids early – for no real reason, that’s just what went through my mind when I envisioned my life down the road. Now approaching my late 20’s I was starting to get worried my plan wasn’t working out like I’d anticipated. But, the Lord has a plan for all of us and luckily for me, in late summer of 2015 his plan to bring Katie into my life would come to fruition. Katie and I met like many other couples these days – online. It was something I’d explored before with not much success and I was on the verge of cancelling my account chalking it up to a waste of money. A few days before I’d decided I would cancel I came across Katie’s profile online and while everyone knows her outward beauty what caught my eye was all the appearance of someone who was down to earth, funny, enjoyable to be around, and a go-getter type of woman. Little did I know how true all of those things would come to be. We eventually started messaging back and forth and this went on for a few days. I was hopeful, but skeptical, as I’d been through this rodeo a couple of times with not much to show for it. We set plans to meet at a Durham Bulls game where she could bring a friend and I could bring a friend to help break the ice. I hopped on a plane to go to Dallas for 3-4 days and it was all I could think about during my time there. Once home and finally on my way to the Bulls stadium the nerves (anyone who knows me knows my anxiety is constantly riding high anyways) were almost unbearable. I downed a couple of beers to take the edge off when I got the text she was walking my way. It’s not hard to pick Katie out of a crowd because of her small stature but I was amazed at how little the pictures she posted of herself online did her justice. She was incredibly beautiful and her smile was the type to instantly pull you in. What happened in the next 7-10 days after we first met at the Bulls game is laughably a blur to both of us. In fact, if you ask us where our 2nd date was after that game, neither of us can remember – honestly! All we can remember is the multiple levels of attraction that instantly pulled both of us towards each other. Progressively I found myself driving to Angier night after night to see Katie (a solid 45 minutes both ways) as she was still finishing up the last year of her Doctorate program in Physical Therapy at Campbell. It was a small price to pay to be able to spend time with her and continue our relationship further. It didn’t take long for me to realize what a catch I had – the old adage of “out kicked your coverage” was something I was well aware of, and I wanted to make her my girlfriend as soon as possible! Finally after school Katie would move to Raleigh so we could be closer together and 6 months later she’d move into my apartment so we could test the waters before taking the next logical step together. I’m sure Katie would say adjusting to living with me was quite an interesting time but she loved me through all my faults and never fought with me even when I know she’d just as well rather put me in the ground :). It’s amazing the things men will change and do for love – I am no different than anyone else. I found myself constantly looking for ways to improve as I wanted to show her how much I cared for her in more ways than one. In the 2.5 years we’ve been together Katie has constantly been the rock in our relationship. As Katie and I take this journey together we can’t help but express our gratitude and love to our families who have been so supportive of our relationship and have welcomed us both with open arms in to each side of the family. I never knew I could love someone as much as I love my future bride but the Lord has blessed me in many ways. Katie is the best thing to ever happen to me. I love her passion for the things & people she cares about, her laugh when she’s very tired and approaching delirious, her willingness to learn & try new things, and most of all the love & patience she shows me on a daily basis. I can’t wait to marry you, Katie! Her Version: Patience is trusting God to keep His promises in His perfect timing. I have been told this my entire life growing up in a church-going family. Patience, if you know me, is hard to come by. When beginning PT school, my focus was achieving my goal of a doctorate degree. 2 years into PT school I began trying to visualize what my life would be like in the next 5 years, hoping for a successful job and a successful relationship. I had dated on and off through school but just never felt that “feeling” people say you get when you meet the man you’re going to marry...... that is until I went to a baseball game. It all started when I began attending a church, Oasis, in Holly Springs with my friend Heather. One night we went to dinner with one of the small groups from church and heard a girl talk about how she met her fiance online. We thought to ourselves, dating online, who does that? She began telling us how great it was and how we should give it a try. We instantly began talking about how crazy the idea was on our drive home, but thought maybe we should try it, because YOLO. I did give it a try but after many failed attempts at dates, I began to lose my patience with online dating and thought about deleting my accounts. As I signed on to cancel my account, I saw I had a message from someone. I read a sweet message, but thought “I am sure this one won’t work out either.” So, I cancelled that account thinking online dating wasn't for me. Upon reflection I decided to try one more dating site thinking maybe I originally chose the wrong site. After a few more failed dating attempts I again began to think again about deleting my account when I noticed another message and this guy looked oddly familiar. What are the odds? It was the same guy who had messaged me right before deleting my last account. I remember looking closer at his profile and thinking, hmm he’s cute, maybe I’ll give him a shot this time. We began chatting and realized we had a similar friend in common, Colin. whom I found out later was his best friend growing up and someone I had attended Campbell with. Brooks and I exchanged numbers and continued conversation until one night we realized we were at the same place at the same time. I was with my PT school friends at a Durham Bulls baseball game with all my friends nudging me to go meet this man I had been talking about for weeks. Nervously,after some liquid courage, my friend Heather and I made our way over him and a group of his friends at a restaurant at the game. It was awesome as we hit it off immediately. At that baseball game I really felt I met someone great. I liked his friends and I could tell we shared a love of family and the same core values. Each date thereafter I realized when I was with Brooks I was happy and on the worst of chaotic days he was my champion with a calming, steadfast influience. Before long I discovered I had that elusive "feeling" that this man was someone I could build a life with. Thankfully he had the same feeling about me. Though patience is not my strong point, I am ever thankful God placed this man in my life at the perfect time. I am so happy with Brooks and just can't wait to begin our life together as man and wife October 13, 2018.