by Lee-Anne Galloway
Toronto Matchmaker (straight clientele)
Last month, I got engaged on the top of a mountain near Calgary. We stood at the summit for a photograph when he nervously reached out his arms, ring box upside down, and said nothing. I ugly cried. The woman taking our pic said “What’s your answer?”, I smiled and said “YES!” He yelled into the mountains “SHE! SAID! YES!".
We were set up by a mutual friend and introduced at a party. A party full of artists, of which he is not. He was a bit quiet and reserved and wearing a fitted green t-shirt that showed off his athletic physique. My immediate thoughts were “This guy spends too much time in the gym, and we really don't have much in common.” Next!
He sent me a message on Facebook, I messaged back, he sent me his number and then... I ghosted. WHAT?! A professional matchmaker blew off a match?! Yup.
I was stuck. I thought I was being positive and proactive in my dating life, but I was actually jaded and so rigid that I was unwilling to give anyone a real chance -- or even a second date, for that matter. I knew what I wanted, and if a guy didn’t show up exactly how I had envisioned him, I was out.
I realized the irony of the situation when our mutual friend nudged me to reach out a month later. I called him, apologized for blowing him off, and asked him out. It took a few dates for me to really get to know him. And when I did, he was everything. He was thoughtful, generous, funny, supportive, intelligent, adventurous, positive, stylish, understanding and full of spunk! All the things I had on my list!
So, what did I learn from ditching my judgements and fixations and going for a second date?
First impressions and even first dates are not enough time to get to know someone. We judge harshly instead of staying curious and open. The best way to get to know someone is to spend some time with them. I tell clients, “if your date looked nice, smelled nice and you had a good time, then go out again!”
There will never be a perfect time to meet someone, so stop waiting for it. When I met my fiance, my mother was very ill with cancer and I was a mess. He listened, was understanding and so kind. Not a fairytale beginning, but it was real and it made us stronger by facing it together.
It’s not always sparks at first sight. A slow burn is what to watch for. If there’s not a lot of chemistry on date one, but you weren’t turned off, go out again and see if it smoulders.
Finally — and this is the most important point — you must realize the traits and attributes you are looking for may show up differently than you expect! You have to be open and present in the moment to see traits revealed in different packages and combinations.
I am so lucky I recognized the irony of the situation and smartened up.
I am so lucky I called him back.
And I am so lucky he fell for me! This marriage will be epic. I am so in love, and it’s just the beginning. I am forever grateful to our matchmaker. You should get one too! ;)