Sarah had come through a bad breakup and was looking to start over when it came to the search for a spouse. The 24-year-old from the Charlotte area was hoping she could find someone who shared her Faith and would attend Mass with her. “I wasn’t sure about the whole online dating thing,” Sarah recalled. “But I also thought it be the best way to find what I was looking for.”
Bobby had similar goals for a future marriage, but he wasn’t in an ideal spot to begin a relationship. The 26-year-old from just outside Dallas was serving his country in northern Iraq He thought of himself as strong-willed and persistent, and he would need those qualities in pursuit of fair Sarah.
“He sent me an emoticon and initially I wasn’t really interested in him,” Sarah admitted. “But he was persistent…eventually I saw his character and we began really talking.”
Even the positive online connection didn’t necessarily shake Sarah of her skepticism. It was easy enough to correspond while Bobby was in Iraq, but when his deployment wound down he wanted to see here. “I was little unsure, but on a whim agreed,” she said.
The young couple had to overcome some initial awkwardness at the airport, but the time they spent laying a foundation online paid off now. The early tension dissipated and they settled into enjoying each other’s company.
Bobby took the initiative again and asked Sarah to be his girlfriend. For the third time she faced skepticism and for the third time decided to take her chances. “I wasn’t sure how the long distance element would work out, but gave it a shot,” she told Catholic Match.
He was stationed near his home in Texas, and they were able to work things out and see each other a couple times a month. They relied on Skype and even old-fashioned direct mail to communicate. He got to see the beach in Carolina for the first time, and she made her inaugural visit to the southwest.
They were able to find much in common. Both liked being outdoors, something that was important to Sarah, who believed the movie/dinner thing could get repetitive after a while, and they shared a common interest and outlook on politics.
After three months of dating, the couple liked the direction things were going. Bobby was traveling to North Carolina, and while his ideal proposal was from a mountaintop in El Paso, he wasn’t ready to wait for Sarah to visit again. Maybe it was just as appropriate that he saved the moment for Veterans’ Day when she picked him up the airport in Charlotte.
Bobby was ready to complete his mission and no longer willing to wait, he decided to seize the moment at a parking lot by Walmart, where they’d stopped on the way from the airport.
“He pulled out a word scramble puzzle he had made that said ‘marry me’,” Sarah fondly recalled. She had her own impatience, and almost took the ring out of the box before he had a chance to slide it on her finger.
Bobby and Sarah were married in the summer of 2011, and are expecting their first child in March. “I am grateful that we share our Catholic faith,” Sarah concluded. “I think our shared value have made our relationship easier.”