Natalie and Girard met in 2018 on Plenty of Fish, and the last two years have been quite the whirlwind for these two. Natalie was a single parent with two children before she met Girard and now they are a happy family of six. These two have jumped through all kinds of hurdles to blend their families together and create a home that is rooted in trust, faith and love.
I encourage you two read their story today:
When you first saw each of your profiles, what was it that stood out to you?
Girard: There wasn’t just one thing, it was everything collectively about her. The headline of her profile and her main photo was the first thing that caught my eye. I honestly thought her profile could have been fake because it was too good to be true. I was hesitant to message her because I didn’t want to be let down if it was.
I read all of her profile and was drawn in by how open and transparent she was throughout. Natalie mentioned her kids, her business, what her intentions were, what she was looking for in a partner, her favorite movies, music genres, as well as easy conversation starters. I remember the last sentence said that she wouldn’t respond to just a “hey” and that she was only interested in someone that was seriously interested in her – so I wrote her a pretty good paragraph listing our common interests and what I found fascinating about her.
Natalie: I was actually on vacation when Girard messaged me. I saw his message, but I didn’t read it or respond right away. In fact, I ended up opening it and responded 3-4 days later. I was blown away by his message and how thorough it was. I was intrigued to say the least.
I remember apologizing for how long it took for me to reply back and the conversation just took off from there. We would stay up all hours of the night messaging back and forth until we would pass out with our phones in our hands. We really got to know each other before we set up our first date! I definitely took notice in his patience, his curiosity to learn more about me, and also his ability to be open with me as well. Yes, physical attraction is certainly important, but he drew me in with an intellectual conversation that mentally captivated me first and foremost.
Who messaged who first and what did you say?
Natalie: Girard messaged me first! He saw that in my job description it said “stay at home mom / entrepreneur” and both of us had our own start up businesses so he touched on that quite a bit. He mentioned our similarities while asking questions that correlated. I remember one specifically about how I had mentioned in my bio that I am a huge comic (Marvel) fan so he had asked me who my favorite character was. (Loki duh! best anti-villain!), our favorite bands, sports teams, etc. It was honestly so refreshing getting all the silly small talk out of the way because it gave us the freedom to get into the deeper questions when we finally went on our first, second, and third dates.
What made you two click?
Girard: When I first got out of the car and I saw her walk down the steps, the classic Kim Carnes, Betty Davis Eyes played perfectly in my head while she walked towards me. I couldn’t wait to hold my dream girl. I was nervous, excited, and so much more. I wanted everything to go perfectly on this date because I just knew she was the one. From the moment I gave her a hug, it was pure magic. Our common interests in almost everything we shared was incredible. I connected with her emotionally in ways that I haven’t been able to do with anyone else.
Natalie: What made us click was the striking similarities in our deepest conversations – where we wanted to be in 10 years, how many children we wanted, our parenting styles, our conversation on my 2 children from a previous long term relationship and the family dynamic behind it, our religious beliefs, and the bow on top was our first kiss. That’s what sealed the deal for me.
What did you do for the first date?
Natalie: We actually ended up going to the Penalty Box (casual small bar/pub type food). I never really asked if that was the initial plan because I actually ended up being well over an hour late. I felt so bad but my kids that night were being a bit harder than usual to put to bed and poor Girard waited so patiently outside my house while I rushed to get ready. I thought for sure he was going to eventually drive away.
I was so surprised to see him when I stepped out of my house. He had the most beautiful bouquet of pink roses but nothing held a candle to his smile. He gave me a hug, opened my door, helped me in, then we were off. We made a snap decision at that point since our 8pm date turned into an 11pm date and most of the popular restaurants were closed. I joked with him earlier that we could even just go to McDonalds – I truly just wanted to meet him and get to know him. Totally didn’t expect it to almost come to fruition! We got to the pub and picked this cozy little table away from everyone else and we could not stop talking. We stayed until closing time. Neither one of us brought our phones out (purely unintentional and honestly rare nowadays). When we left, he walked me to his car, arm in arm, and before opening his door, we both happened to look at each other and slowly he leaned in and kissed me. Boom, fireworks. I melted like butter on a freshly baked biscuit. That first breath afterwards was the beginning of the rest of our lives together.
I love that first date moment! Were there topics of conversation important for you to bring up earlier on in your relationship? I know you had two children from a previous relationship Natalie, was this something you shared with Girard fairly early on?
Girard: In the beginning it was integral to really dive deep and understand the children’s emotional stance but also to understand in-depth what kind of role, if any, their biological father played. Right out of the gate, I wanted to make it clear that I wasn’t coming in to try and replace their dad, but to be another positive male role model in her children’s lives. That was the most important for me towards our future being successful.
Natalie: My children and family dynamic were definitely one of the main focal points right from the beginning. I had gone on a lot of dates with a lot of guys who just didn’t feel like “dealing” with my kids. I had made it known that if Girard wanted to be with me, it was going to be a package deal. My kids don’t come second to anyone so I wanted a partner that understood where I was coming from and wanted to grow as a family unit together. I also went on quite a few dates with Girard prior to introducing my kids to him. My children’s “biological” father hadn’t been in the picture in quite some time at this point so I didn’t want my children to feel like they were getting replaced by someone else. My oldest is also autistic and Girard really sat down with me during prior dates and asked questions so he could really understand where on the spectrum my oldest was.
What has been the biggest hurdle you’ve jumped over together?
Natalie: Our biggest hurdle by far has been trying to integrate Girard into my family dynamic. We didn’t want the kids to feel like they were forced to have this new “dad figure” in their lives and eased them into everything very slowly. From simple trips to the park, going for ice cream, the movies, then slowly into their “territory” such as having Girard over for breakfast or dinner, for game night, movies at home, ice cream parties, holidays, then eventually that first sleepover. It was a very slow process. The patience and understanding he has to this day with both of my kids is quite remarkable.
What is your best piece of advice for those using Plenty of Fish to find their special person? Do you have any advice for singles with children specifically?
Girard & Natalie: Our best advice would be that you have to remember there is someone out there for everyone. True love does exist, so don’t give up. Be yourself and take a chance. Set your boundaries and make your intentions clear from the start. Don’t give up looking for your other half because they’re out there looking for you too. Having a child isn’t baggage to the right person who is strong enough to carry it.
P.S. don’t wear a fitted hat in your main profile pic (says Girard laughing).