Erin Smith and Alex Barker’s story is the stuff that dreams are made of.
The couple both suffer from moebius syndrome, a rare neurological disorder that causes weakness and paralysis of several cranial nerves, especially those on the face. The condition affects 1 in 50,000 to 1 in 500,000 newborns. To read more about moebius syndrome, click here.
Erin found solace and support among a moebius syndrome Facebook group and this is where she found Alex, the Coventry, England native. The chatting began on Facebook messenger, and they slowly developed a friendship that soon blossomed into a romance.
They decided to take things to the next level by meeting face to face at Erin’s hometown of Lexington, North Carolina. Alex arrived at Wine Cellars Wine Shop and Bistro, where he was greeted by Erin’s massive clan of family and friends who were overjoyed to meet him.
It was on that fateful trip where they fell in love and they immediately made plans to see each other again in a July conference for moebius syndrome. But Alex was unable to wait until then, so he planned a surprise Valentines Day visit.
Yet again, Wine Cellars was packed with the Erin clan who managed to keep the visit a secret. Needless to say, Erin was amazed.
During the July conference in Los Angeles, Alex took Erin to a Dodger’s game. She had never even been to a baseball game. After that, he took her to the Santa Monica Pier and it was on that golden coast where Alex popped the question.
“When I met Erin, I knew she was the one for me from the start,” Alex said in an interview with the dispatch. “Because we’ve got so much in common. We got this condition, we like music, we like wine tasting and I think we complement each other very well.”