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If A Series of Unfortunate Events
by Lemony Snicket is all about the travails of the Beaudelaire
children, then our connecting would be its very opposite. I (Heidi) had
wanted to respond to something Glenn wrote in a post in one of the
message forums. I happened to hit the wrong button, and landed on his
profile instead. As it should so happen, I not only landed on Glenn’s
profile, but stayed, being so very attracted to his smile. Furthermore,
his profile read that he was a widower. Having also lost a spouse, my
heart instantly went out to Glenn.

I set out to finish the
response to him, but something came up and, being frustrated, I
abandoned the effort. However, I had no idea what God had in store for
us…for Glenn did something that just completely wowed me: he sent me an
email thanking me for having browsed his profile. (Y’all need to know,
if you would like to increase your opportunities for actual meetings,
send a thank you for a browse!!!) We clicked immediately. In a very
short time, I felt like I’d known Glenn forever, and like I’d finally
found my soul mate. Glenn felt the same way. We progressed from
emailing to chatting to calling each other on the phone in very short
order. We spent hours on the phone chatting with each other every day.

Out
of those phone conversations grew the realization that we were falling
in love with each other. One can argue that one can’t fall in love with
someone on the Internet, but we each fell in love with the other. The
one thing that was missing was the physical presence. The souls
connected, the hearts connected. We related well with each other and
related to each other equally well. As Glenn says, we had many
similarities, but the differences are enough to keep it interesting
indeed. It wasn’t long at all before we realized we wanted to meet each
other, and started to make plans to do so. We decided to meet for the
first time on the weekend of June 11th.

At the risk of
shortening the story, suffice it to say that our meeting that weekend
went beyond what either of us imagined, greatly proving our feelings
and strengthening our desire to be with each other through the
sacrament of Holy Matrimony. The weekend culminated with a Monday trip
to see my priest, who prescribed a course of action to take to prepare
for marriage. After that, I drove Glenn to the airport. I did NOT want
to say goodbye to him, nor to see him leave. I longed to be married to
him THEN, for I would not have to say goodbye in the way I had to do at
the airport!

After Glenn returned, we both began the wait for
our next meeting: June 27-30. We spent several days together, meeting
his parents in upstate New York. All our kids met and hit it off right
off the bat. We spent the day getting to know his parents, and then
took off the next day for the Welland Canal and Niagara Falls. We saw
the ship Daviken pass under the bridge and through Lock 3 in the canal,
which was an amazing sight. Even more amazing was the breathtaking view
from the hotel room. The whole sight of it brought me to tears. Such
majesty and splendor! Such raw power in that water!

The
following day we toured the Niagara Parks area with the help of Glenn’s
sister-in-law, Irene, who was the sister of his deceased wife. Irene
had brought her husband, her two daughters and the fiancée of one
daughter. Together, we all toured the park and had a blast. I met some
awesome people in Glenn’s life that day, and it seems my youngest
daughter, Debbie, made a friend in Irene’s daughter Andrea, as well!

We
returned to upstate New York and then drove back to New Jersey on June
30. On that day, Glenn met my dad and they talked. Glenn let Dad know
he wanted to marry me. Dad talked to Glenn at length, which surprised
me, but ultimately gave his blessing to our future union. Glenn drove
back the next day, which was an early start to what would be the 4th of
July traffic. He eventually made it back to his parents’ house after a
longer trip than anticipated.

Glenn was going to play in a Mass
on July 2nd in the parish down the road from him. He’d been asking me
to come up, but without him knowing, when I learned he would be playing
guitar, I wanted to go up to and attend Mass with him. Thus, we made
plans that I would go up to his parents home once again to attend Mass
with him. However, a 2 ½ hour journey turned into four grueling hours
and then some as I filed in with other motorists to the Thruway,
joining in the traffic that was slowly making its way to the Catskills
for the Independence Day holiday. A few calls to Glenn had me on some
side roads that weren’t faster, but were much safer and I made it to
Glenn’s place with time to spare and change into clothes more suitable
for Mass!

At the end of Mass, we made our way to the sanctuary.
I learned Glenn and I have the same habit that day: we bow before the
crucifix that’s above the altar, and then we go to where the tabernacle
is kept and genuflect before Jesus in the tabernacle. However, Glenn
had a surprise up his sleeve, unbeknownst to me. He pulled a box out of
his pocket, and proposed to me there in front of Jesus, with our three
kids and his mom present! I had bought him a claddagh ring for this
very same occasion, and he’d asked me to bring it. I asked him if he
would marry me, and there, in front of Jesus, in the tabernacle, we put
our rings on each other. To top it all off, the priest was still there.
He had heard the whole exchange. He blessed the rings, sprinkling holy
water on them, something I’d never seen done before in my short time as
a convert. He followed that with a prayer of blessing on our
engagement, also something I’d never experienced vicariously as a
convert.

I knew Glenn wanted to propose, but had no idea he
would do so after the Mass…it was a wondrous moment, in such a very
special place.

That wondrous moment will give way on July 15,
2006 when Glenn and Heidi plan to unite their two hearts as one in the
sacrament of Holy Matrimony. They will join their families, providing
Miryam, Debbie and TJ (Thomas Jude) two loving and living parents as
was meant to be.

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