These College Athletes Bonded over Lifestyles and Decided to Go the Distance

When busy personal and professional lives kept salesman Matt and pediatric oncology nurse Colleen from the North Carolina dating scene, they took matters into their own hands and started swiping on Bumble. They matched in April of 2017 and met for an endorphin-inducing first date at Duke University (which ended in a totally unexpected way). These two are the first to say they didn’t expect to find such an immediate connection and lifelong teammate through an app. Below, their love story in their own words.

When did you match on Bumble?

We first matched on Bumble on April 18, 2017.

Colleen, what was the first message you sent on Bumble?

It was super simple and nothing glamorous. I was just myself: To the point and honest: “Hey Matt! I recently re-uploaded Bumble and saw that we matched. So, this is me reaching out and saying hi!”

Matt, what was your first reply back?

Hey Colleen! Glad you reached out, how’s your day going so far?

Colleen, how did this match feel different?

Right from the beginning, Matt was extremely polite and genuine. He didn’t try to rush things or inflate himself. I really felt like he wanted to get to know me on a deeper level and wasn’t materialistic. This is something that I had never come across before.

Our first conversation was also mainly about sports, more specifically NBA, which is also always a winner for me. (Except that he’s a Cavs fan and I’m a Warriors fan! Not to mention they were both favorites for the 2017 Finals.) We did make a bet on a game, which showed me that he was fun and we could joke around with each other. He made me feel completely at ease and comfortable.

Matt, how did this match feel different?

I would say this match felt different because nothing felt forced. No matter the subject, I was always intrigued and present. We always had something to talk about and we quickly found out that we had so many things in common: our love for Christ, exercise (we were both Division 1 college athletes), desire for adventure, books, movies, the importance of family and friends — even our future ambitions and goals in life lined up.

Colleen, what was your first impression of Matt? How did you feel before the first date?

I was definitely feeling a mixture of excitement and nervousness. Part of me was trying not to let myself get too hopeful in case it didn’t work out. To be honest, I wasn’t even sure he was going to show up.

He called me 5 minutes before he was arriving at a parking lot we had planned to meet at before we went on a run around Duke. This is when I think it really set in, and I could immediately feel the pit of butterflies in my stomach. He was really coming to see me and would be pulling in at any second! 

I think the 2.5 hour drive he made really escalated the first date and put a little more pressure on it than if it were more casual.

Matt, what was your first impression of Colleen? How did you feel before the first date?

I was quickly surprised how easy it was to talk to her and was constantly looking forward to learning more about her goals, passions, ambitions, and most importantly, what she was looking for in a relationship.

I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was nervous. But after the nose bleed, plans were quickly thrown out the window. (Yes — she got the worst nosebleed at the end of our run! We couldn’t go out for dinner as planned because she had blood all over her.)

I couldn’t have been more happy they did, because we opted for some to-go burgers and enjoyed a few hours of great conversation at her apartment (after she got the blood off of her). Looking back, she was definitely her true self from the beginning, which is something I’ve come to love and continues to give us a good laugh to this day.

All in all, something in me was telling me that I should treat this girl like a queen, because someday she very well may be my queen. Needless to say, she far exceeded those expectations and was more than I could have asked for.

Colleen, what do you consider a unique aspect of your relationship now?

We aren’t just dating. We are each other’s best friends. We make a great team. We have great communication. We love just living life together, no matter what that involves — good and bad.

I feel like in the short time we’ve been dating, we’ve had to deal with a lot of hard circumstances and challenges. Although this isn’t easy and has tested our relationship immensely, we have grown so much together and have great appreciation for our joyful times. We recognize that life isn’t always perfect, it’s hard.

But there is no one else I’d rather live it with. To find that person who is your forever teammate is so special.

Matt, what do you consider a unique aspect of your relationship now?

A unique aspect or quality of our relationship is that we are much more than just friends, best friends, or even boyfriend and girlfriend. We understand that the foundation of our relationship is built on our Christian beliefs, which is something much greater than us.

We also have had to dive deep into various challenges early on, not only as individuals but as a couple. If it wasn’t for our strong communication and ability to be fully transparent with each other, I strongly believe that there is no way we would still be together or on the path toward marriage. 

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