“Hey Monique, How are you?”
I nervously laughed and said, “Good, Todd. How are you?”
“I’m good too. I was just talking to my grandma about you. This is crazy that you called.”
His grandma? How sweet is that?
His smooth calm voice had a way of easing my nerves. We laughed a few times and started asking the real questions. You know like what’s your favorite color and all the soul mate stuff.
I walked away from that conversation excited. He wanted to keep talking. I wanted to know more about him.
Talking on the phone meant that we no longer had to message through Christian Mingle. I could hear his voice, see how he texted. I didn’t have to wait for an email and log on.
I still go back to the days where I did not know who this guy was. When I was simply moving off of preconceived ideas of who I thought he was. The feelings of not knowing still come. I spent too many hours looking for blogs, vlogs, testimonials, on if online relationships truly lasted. The fear that he would not be genuine and authentic were in the back of my mind. Yet there was a peace that stayed present with me through every step. I mean we weren’t going to be running down the aisle within the year, right? we had plenty of time. At least I thought we did.
Within a day, Todd was ready to move forward. We soon got to FaceTime during my lunch break. It was the weirdest yet greatest thing. To be able to see the human being that the words and voice had been this whole time. Facetiming brought on a new level. It made things more real. There was a man behind the messages. A man that was interested in me, and I very much so in him. Even through Todd’s steady forward motions, if I was uncomfortable, I would speak up and he respected that. Because of that, I respected him.
He then told me to think about meeting face to face. This terrified me in some ways, because 1. my family would think I was crazy for meeting up with a man that I met online and 2. because the more memories I made with him, the more hurt could be invested. But his green eyes and calm voice assured me that it could be exactly how I wanted. Friends, no friends, local, meeting halfway whatever. So I tested him, in some ways.
To be honest all of my friends were pregnant at the time and the ones I truly felt comfortable with, were my college pastors, which the husband happened to be a cop, but I left that part out.
Telling my mom was surprisingly ok. I decided to let her know a day before Todd was coming down *yikes*. She wasn’t thrilled at first but as I told her of how Todd came from another Assembly of God, how my best friend and mentor had been guiding me through this time, and how he knew the area because he kind of grew up in the valley, she calmed down, and was actually, dare I say, excited? TO the point of wanting to help me find an outfit and go to the mall. :O This excited me because my prayer is to be wise and I know that with a lot of things, the people around us that know and love us deeply can help point us in a wise direction.
Thursday came. I did not hear much from him that day until he told me that he was running late, thanks to the 405.
I drove a familiar uncharted rode. I didn’t know how this would end, but I was excited. Parking my car I exhaled, prayed, and turned my car off. The windy chill of the air hit my ankles, I should have worn socks. There was a confidence that was built in every stride. In fact I forgot that the whole point of bringing my pastors was because I wanted to stay safe with meeting someone from a website.
Todd was sitting down outside of the restaurant wearing a dark navy button up with anchors on it. That was my guy. Calm. Cool. Collected.