A blind date. Who knew that by accepting this date, it would change my life and what I had previously thought “relationships” were supposed to be like? I didn’t, and that’s why on February 26, 2010 I pushed all nervousness aside and opened the door.

Nate was 23 and I was 27 and we had both pretty much given up on the prospect of finding that special someone.  I had been divorced and was busy working full time and being a mother to my 7 year old son. Nate owned his own home and was busy working 50 to 60 hours a week as a welder. The last thing we needed was a serious relationship to throw us off track. Or so we thought…….

I will never forget that night. Dinner, a movie and dancing. Sounds so simple, but during those hours I knew there was something extremely special and different about this man. We talked and laughed and joked endlessly, and we had everything in common. As the night came to an end, I knew I had to see him again, and I was pretty sure he felt the same way.

Fast forward a year. Nate has changed my life and brought so much more to it than I ever could’ve imagined. He is there to hold my hand when I’m sick, lend a shoulder to cry on, congratulate me when I have accomplished something, and most importantly has been an amazing influence and role model to my son. That, in itself, is priceless.

Nate is quite the romantic, and has been since our first date. Over the course of a year he has sent me flowers, or hand delivered them, more than 15 times. He’s made me dinners, washed the dishes, helped around the house, and surprised me with an outing here or there on more than one occasion. Nothing however, compares to the proposal he had been planning for weeks on end. I was about to find out what romance was all about.

Tara Point, in Gafton, Illinois, sits high on the hillside overlooking the river. It is by far one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Last year, Nate surprised me with a weekend stay for Mother’s Day and I remember telling him how much I loved it and how it would be a perfect place for a wedding. He remembered that, and this is where my proposal begins.

We left Saturday morning, March 5 with the instruction given to me to “get in the truck, we are going for a ride.” I had a feeling he had something of his sleeve, but he does a pretty fine job of keeping things in the dark when he wants to. We arrived in Grafton a little after 1:00 and he turned into the steep lane that leads up the hill to Tara Point. I wasn’t sure what was going on, because I had not packed an overnight bag and wasn’t in the least bit prepared for a overnight stay. Nate, on the other hand, had it all meticulously planned out, and it wasn’t until later I found out how much time and effort he had put into this. He parked the truck, told me to come with him, and led me to the cottages that occupy half of this beautiful property overlooking the river. Our cottage was at the very end, on the bottom, and very secluded. He opened the door, which lead into a quaint and cozy, living/kitchen area with a fireplace and a view that took my breath away. The door to the bedroom was closed, and standing in front of that door, he got down on one knee, and said to me: “Baby, I love you more than anything, will you marry me?”

As he said these words, he opened the bedroom door and the most beautiful display met my gaze. He had a table at the foot of the bed covered with fabric and sprinkled with tiny glass pebbles. Among the pebbles was a beautiful arrangement of flowers, a framed picture of the two of us, and the most gorgeous diamond ring I have ever laid eyes on. With tears in my eyes and a lump in my throat, I said “Yes” and he slid the ring onto my finger. At that moment, I knew romance really existed, and I had a wonderful man to share many more years with. It wasn’t until later on I learned he had included my son in the purchase of the ring, and had made him feel just as much a part of this as I was. That, to me, is what romance is really about. Including the most important people in your life, for the biggest moments in your life. I am so thankful I said “Yes” to that blind date, and found out what true love is all about.

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Last updated February 5, 2017