Longer Than a Lifetime
“When I saw Roman’s profile, that was it.”
Naomi laughs as she remembers the moment – and the events that led up to it. Namely, red wine and an interesting announcement from her roommate: “I’m tired of you pining! I’m signing you up to Catholic Match!”
About 285 miles away, Roman had also joined the Catholic Match community, ready to get serious about dating, and his faith. “I wasn’t basing it off looks at this point,” he begins. But,
“I thought she was beautiful, and I had a calming sense of her being familiar to me.”
When the couple first met via Skype, they talked for hours. Roman was struck by their connection, and how it felt like they had known each other for years. “She was very easy to talk to and spend time with.” And, “She couldn’t stop smiling.”
Naomi, in turn, was impressed by Roman’s sincere search for truth. “It was really clear to me that his faith meant a lot to him.” But, she admits, it was his tattoos that added to his charm and fueled her curiosity. Having several tattoos, she says, “makes me think that someone’s been through something.”
Little did she know that her instinct would prove to be right.
Seated together now, this couple is the picture of contentment. A very pregnant Naomi is grinning from ear to ear, and Roman is holding her hand, watching her with adoring eyes. In between my questions, they share private jokes and tease each other in a way that makes me hopeful for my own happily ever after. Despite this, things weren’t always easy for the two. Though things had felt right from the beginning, they admit that there were barriers in their relationship that had to be overcome.
“I think I knew that Naomi was the one early on in our relationship,”
Roman muses. “But I didn’t realize to what extent until later on when she helped me with some struggles that I was going through.”
Roman had kept those struggles to himself for a long time. No one, not even his closest friends and family, was aware of what he had endured or how much of a battle he faced daily. Keeping things hidden and holding back had become the norm, but when Naomi sensed that Roman was doing the same with her, and it shook her confidence in their relationship.
“I was doubting whether I was worth it to him,” Naomi reveals quietly. “Ironically, in the deepest despair I had ever had, when I thought I would lose him… I knew we were soulmates. I had never felt anything like that. It was just a perfect, ‘This is actually supposed to be the purpose of my life.’”
Far from being oblivious to her plight, Roman saw the negative effects his silence was having on their relationship, and he resolved to open up for her sake.
“Things became clear, and it made so much sense,” Naomi relays. “After he made that step, he told me that it was because he was supposed to be married to me. The moment that happened, I knew we were going to be married, and it was going to last longer than a lifetime.”
Roman is silent during this exchange, but he squeezes Naomi’s hand and occasionally lifts it to his mouth for a kiss. It’s hard for him to talk about what he’s experienced, so he sends me a short email after our interview. One line stands out: “She was a big part of me getting over it and making me accountable moving forward.
“She saved me.”
Naomi agrees. “We weren’t just a couple – we alone could bring each other to Christ.”
Now, as they prepare to celebrate their first wedding anniversary, with the birth of their first child close behind, life for these two is worlds away from the difficulties they faced in the early stages of their relationship. They attribute this change to their commitment to honesty, open communication, intentional time spent together, and prayer.
“It’s a journey,” Naomi says of their life together. “And it’s a joyful one!”
Want more? You can read the couple's Catholic Match success story here