Joanna and David
Joanna: “Where to start on how amazing finding David is? I always dreamt of having 'the fairy tale' romance, the one where your eyes meet for the first time and you just know that you have been searching for this person all your life. My previous relationships had failed and I ended up trying very hard to convince myself that others had been 'the one' and ignoring the little voice in the depth of my heart saying ‘Joanna, he wasn’t the one.’
Until I met David I had the most terrible luck in love. For some reason I kept picking not just the wrong ones but really, truly the wrong ones. I had been married and divorced by the age of 25 and then went straight into an abusive relationship all before I was 29. At 29 I thought my Prince Charming had deserted me. After I turned 30 and had spent a good year on my own re-discovering who I was and what I wanted, I thought about trying again. I had 30 years of experience picking my own catastrophes so I thought it wise to hand over the responsibility to the intricate matching of eHarmony!
My two previous long-term relationships had been back to back and the last time I was in the ‘dating’ arena was in 2001 and at University, a very different environment to the one I was now in. As a single mum with a full-time career I just didn’t go out, but luckily I was able to find my Prince Charming in the comfort and safety of my living room! This was my journey in my search for love. As a proficient optimist I limited my match distance to just a 30 kilometre radius from my front door and found that my perfect match had been under my nose the entire time!
Chemistry is a really big thing for me and I decided that I was only going to accept communication with those profiles that gave me something exciting. Perhaps it was the way they wrote about themselves, a fascinating photo or their physical appearance. When I was matched with David my first thought was, ‘My goodness he is lovely but I think he may be too good looking for me,’ so I didn’t initiate any contact. Within a few days of being matched with David, he sent me the first five questions of guided communication. Suffice to say I responded straight away and sent mine back and something just clicked. It wasn’t whirlwinds and fireworks straight away, more of a quiet, comforting feeling. We then skipped the next two stages and started emailing. Instantly we built rapport, swapped phone numbers and agreed to meet.
Our first date was at the Botanical Gardens in Sheffield. I was to meet David at 1pm at the gates and we planned to have a quick coffee. I remember the night before being so excited and nervous that I couldn’t sleep. I must have eaten a whole load of caterpillars at lunch time because that evening my tummy was so full of butterflies, I couldn’t stay still! The wait in the morning was torturous, I paced up and down, changed my outfit three times, I was so nervous my insides felt like they were liquidising!
I arrived right on time at the gates but there was no sign of David. Yikes! I started to get a little panicky and then I decided to text him. Just as I got my phone out a message from him came through, ‘Hi Joanna, I am here at the gates, see you in a bit.’ I looked about but could only see an old man walking his dog. It was then I remembered that the Botanical Gardens have two gates, so knew that David must have been at the other ones. I called David and let him know that I wasn’t standing him up and raced off to meet him! I must have walked up that hill at 60 miles per hour. I was so excited to see him.
At the top of the hill, sat underneath the stone archway was David. It was like meeting an old friend. Like I had always dreamt, from the moment I looked up and saw him it felt like I had come home. We spent seven hours in the Botanical Gardens, looking at the plants and talking. At the end of the first date we had shared a lot, laughed a lot and I knew I had met someone very special. We immediately made a plan to meet again, as soon as possible.
Things rocketed from there. From the end of the first date we both propelled ourselves emotionally into our blossoming friendship. We talked on the phone every day and we met up as much as we could. I think we both knew quite early on that this was the ‘real deal’.
Over a year down the line we feel so lucky to have met. I am a huge believer in fate and everything happens for a reason, sometimes you just need to give fate a helping hand. I am so happy that I joined eHarmony and took my time to wait for that profile to pop up that ticked all my boxes. I never compromised on finding David, he is perfect for me and my son in every conceivable way. I remember saying to a friend just before I joined eHarmony that my ideal man would be from the North East (I like the accent), practical and intelligent, gentle, kind, open, family orientated and flexible. I never dreamt he would walk into my life, although I hoped with all my heart that he would. I have been through a lot, I have kissed a few toads but finally my Prince Charming arrived, he was obviously just stuck in traffic.”