By Sara Gaynes Levy
Dating during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic was a tricky thing. Los Angeles-based Cobe had never really met people online, but they decided to download Bumble in 2020 and give it a try. Shortly after, they saw Tamera and noticed her cute dog, Huxley. Profile photos of Tamera hiking with her pup were enough to convince Cobe they’d have things in common, and they swiped right. Tamera admits she doesn’t remember much about Cobe’s profile, other than thinking they were cute. After chatting for a bit, the two soon set up their first date: a walk in the park with smoothies—and special guest Huxley.
“I was there a few minutes early, and I remember thinking, if she doesn’t bring the dog, I’m totally leaving,” Cobe says with a laugh. Luckily, Tamera showed up with Huxley in tow, but he almost immediately pulled her arm, spilling her entire smoothie on the ground—not the strongest start! They walked through the park and talked, but both left the date thinking it was not a success. Cobe thought Tamera didn’t like them. “There was very little eye contact,” Cobe says. “We had a great conversation, but she never looked me in the eye.” Tamera was similarly not sure if Cobe was into her. “I was just really nervous,” says Tamera. “And I had Huxley with me, and he doesn’t do well at parks.” With all of that going on, she wasn’t able to really focus on the date. But when they got home, Cobe decided to take a chance and DM’d Tamera info on a pizza spot, suggesting they go there on their next date. “I was like, what is happening!?” laughs Tamera.
Tamara, too, decided to give their connection another shot, and they went out for that pizza just a few nights later. The energy was completely different. “We had a great time!,” says Cobe. They talked about their relationship goals, and the top qualities they were searching for in a partner. (Both agreed respect topped the list.) Over the next few dates, they bonded over more things they had in common. They both love trying new foods, share a passion for travel, and have a similar approach to relationships, not taking it personally when the other partner needs space. But, just three weeks into their budding relationship, in early 2021, they found out space would be hard to come by: Cobe’s roommate had tested positive for COVID, and Tamera had been exposed. Tamera was on a trip, and she came home immediately to quarantine for 14 days—picking Cobe up on the way so they could hole up together. “We were sure we’d be sick of each other after those 14 days,” says Cobe. “But we’ve never left each other’s side since.”
What made this relationship different, especially for two people who really value their alone time? “I think we both have a good way of being completely honest, but also being aware of one another’s feelings,” says Cobe. “From the beginning we did a really great job of just being like, hey, is it okay if I’m super transparent about how I’m feeling or what I need?” Tamera loves being with someone who is just as communicative as she is. “We balance each other out,” she says. “I think it boils down to the fact that we have a very high level of respect for ourselves, each other, and our relationship.”
About six months after their first date, they decided to move in together—for all their talk of the importance of time apart, they didn’t really need it. “At first we were like, what if we lose our own apartments and then need them?” says Cobe. “But then we realized that we weren’t staying in our own apartments anyway.” They knew it was quick, but it worked for them.
Cobe and Tamera’s connection has proven to be the most profound and meaningful relationship either has ever been in. “Cobe is the love of my life,” says Tamera. “They’re super sweet, and kind, and very caring, and sometimes funny!” (Cobe takes no offense to this comment— “I think I’m hilarious,” they say.) Tamera says that even when she’s not sure what she needs in a moment, Cobe always just seems to know. And Cobe loves how patient Tamera is: “I’m a worrier, and she makes me feel safe to worry and talk about what I’m worrying about, and do what I need to do to resolve those parts of me,” they say. “I’ve never felt that level of comfort with someone before.”
With a foundation this rock-solid, in January of 2022, just shy of one year after their first date, Cobe and Tamera got engaged in Northern California’s Joshua Tree National Park. A little over a year later, in March 2023, the couple got married. “Growing up, it was like ‘oh, you’re queer so you’re not going to get married and you’re not going to have a family,’” says Cobe. “But with Tamera, I get to be married and have a family. I’m just so excited to be able to have all of this.”
With reporting by Rosemary Donahue.