I was a quiet guy and had gotten pretty used to the single life, but comfortable with the online dating game. I would go on multiple first dates in the same week! Betsy, however, was not as comfortable with that approach upon her move back to the tristate.
We matched on the app Coffee Meets Bagel, which doesn’t let you write a message before you match. I like that, so I could reserve effort for where it will matter.
Betsy was dating someone else and didn’t want to chat yet, so I gave my number and she texted me a week later.
We got an evening drink for our first date, at Littlefield in Northside on November 5, 2019. After that, we kept on enjoying each other’s company!
One sign of seriousness was watching several Star Wars movies within the span of just a few days at my house in December 2019. I enjoyed Betsy’s kindness & patience, her laugh & mannerisms, her intelligence & ability to hold a discussion, her big smile & kind eyes, her musicality, and her interest in my variety of hobbies.
Later on, I got invited on the big Williams family vacation in August - a very big step! There, an official family vote was taken (after I left). On our first anniversary, having carefully pondered, I said “I love you” :)
Finally, on January 12, 2021 we became engaged! In our COVID routine, we enjoyed a dinner at my house and I showed Betsy some YouTube music covers with personal backstory. One was Single Ladies (Put a Ring on It) - very subtle. Then I asked her to close her eyes, for the full listening experience you see, and played a video of Here Comes the Bride on pipe organ. When she opened her eyes, I was on one knee and asked the question!
I’ve always been somewhat skeptical of online dating, but tried it occasionally over the years to no avail. After moving back to the Cincinnati area in the summer of 2019 and establishing a healthier work-life balance than the previous 10 years, I decided to give it a go again, figuring Cincinnati had a wider potential pool of young, single Christian professionals than my previous location! I wasn’t sure what app to use, but I met a new friend in my church group who had just gotten engaged, and said she met her fiance on Coffee Meets Bagel! I downloaded the app and created a dating profile that night. The app would show you a couple potential profile matches each day, and you each had to “like” the other profile before you could message each other (which was great to weed out unwelcome messages).
I’d only been using the app for a month when Nathan messaged me! At the time I had just gone on a second date with someone else, but something about Nathan’s profile really intrigued me! I told Nathan I needed to figure out what was happening with the 2nd date guy, but would love to talk to him more at a later point. Nathan gave me his phone number so I could text him later if I wanted (as the app chat closes after a week), and I entered him in my phone as “Nathan CMB.” Sure enough, the 2nd date guy didn’t go anywhere and a week or so later I texted Nathan to re-start our conversation. We both expressed a desire to get to know each other in-person, so we quickly set up a date for evening drinks at the Littlefield in Northside, and officially met on November 5th, 2019.
I honestly wasn’t sure what to think about Nathan at first; he was quiet, but kind and sincere, and had moments of humor that took me by surprise! We started seeing each other every week or so, and always had a great time. I discovered there was a depth to his character and personality, and I was intrigued by the many layers of Nathan :). We rarely messaged each other outside our dates, and got to know each other little by little as we spent time together. By March of 2020 (just before Covid shutdowns, actually!) I decided to stop holding back and commit fully to the relationship, come what may - I told a friend I would either marry Nathan or end up with a broken heart. The rest is history! I fell in love with Nathan’s kindness, honesty, quirkiness, sincerity, and good humor. Nathan doesn’t do or say anything he doesn’t intend to follow through on, so when he said “I love you” for the first time on the anniversary of our first date, I knew our engagement was soon to follow - and he officially proposed 2 months later! I couldn’t be more thrilled to marry this wonderful man on July 31st, 2021 :).
After we got engaged in January, we started attending Christ the King Church together. Deciding whether to attend Nathan’s or Betsy’s church as a couple was our first big decision after engagement! We love our CTK church community, and enjoy attending our “City Group” (like a Bible study/community group, with 15-20 other people) each week. Nathan often volunteers by audio mixing on Sunday mornings, and Betsy divides her serving time between playing on worship team and serving in the children’s ministry. We’re excited to grow in our relationship with the Lord, each other, and our brothers and sisters in Christ in such a loving and supportive community!
After our wedding, we’ll live together in Nathan’s current house in Northside. We love being in walking distance from many restaurants, coffee shops, bars, a park, and various other unique shops! Nathan’s job at Paycor will remain primarily virtual even after Covid ends, so he will likely always be working from home. Betsy will continue teaching music at NKU Music Prep, and nannying. We do plan to move locations after a year or two to a home that’s more conducive to Nathan having a permanent at-home office, and raising our future children. But we definitely won’t go too far - it’s wonderful to be in easy driving distance of Nathan’s parents on the West Side, and Betsy’s parents in Northern Kentucky! We enjoy spending time with good friends, old and new, whether we’re going out to a restaurant or having a game night at home.
We are incredibly blessed with such a strong network of family, friends, and church community. We pray that our marriage will be honoring to the Lord and a blessing to our community. When you think of us, please pray that both the joys and trials we encounter would serve to mold our characters and deepen our love for each other, our community, and our God.