When David Kowitz met Rachel Shapiro, he was overwhelmed.
“I knew the first instant I saw her,” he said of that day in late 2009, when she appeared to help organize a friend’s office for her company, Back to Basics Organizing, LLC. “If I could have created the perfect person for me, it would be Rachel.”
David jokes that he was paralyzed, felt like he was “punched in the face.” He shook her hand, and his palms were sweaty. He was visibly nervous.
As Rachel returned to the office, they spoke more and more. Gone were the sweaty palms. Rachel noticed he was cute, funny and smart. And he was Jewish, which was important.
“I remember thinking I wish I could meet a guy like that,” said Rachel, 29. “That’s when I started thinking about him in that context. We definitely had a connection.”
David found Rachel’s company’s phone number online and called. By the time they went on their first date in January 2010, they were comfortable with each other. David joked to the hostess that they were celebrating their first anniversary, and he proceeded to tell the waiter a hilarious, contrived story about their relationship. The waiter delivered a special flaming dessert to help them celebrate. They talked about their common interests including funny movies, 1980s ballads, Jewish values and family. Rachel recalls it as one of the “nicest nights of my life.”
Soon, they were best friends and spending more and more time together. Within a year, they were deeply in love, and Rachel was spending time with David’s daughters, Ella, 7, and Laney, 4.
“I didn’t expect them to be as good and as loving toward me as they are,” said Rachel. “They are a big part of my life. They are very special to me.”
David offered a babysitter to help with childcare, but Rachel refused. Instead she revels in the opportunity to do homework with Ella and plan picnics, go to playgrounds, take walks and play pretend games with both of them.
“All you want is for your kids to be happy,” said David, 38, a real estate and title attorney for Resource Title, LLC. “Rachel is a big part of why everything’s OK.”
David proposed over champagne by a fire in February 2012, and they married May 25, 2013 at the Baltimore Museum of Industry. Patricia and Jack Kowitz of Pikesville and Harold and Michele Shapiro of Waynesboro, Pa., were among the 162 guests.
The wedding featured Rabbi Scott Nagel of Oheb Shalom Congregation reading aloud the personal letters they penned to each other as well as a specially choreographed dance to Lionel Ritchie’s “My Love.”
Today, they are thankful for the life they have built and the way they feel complete with each other.
“When you are able to truly be yourself around someone, it’s liberating,” said David. “Our moments are real. I’m lucky to have found her.”
Linda L. Esterson is an Owings Mills-based freelance writer. For “Beshert,” call 410-902-2305 or email Linda.Esterson@verizon.net.