This week we braved one more big Disneyland day. I’m talking 10 hours of toddler themed fun at the happiest place on earth. Lots and lots of characters were hugged, a few big girl rides were ridden for the first time, and we watched the live Frozen show (or as Elouise keeps referring to it, the Ana Elsa Show). It was so worth it but by the end of the day I thought my body was going to just power down like a robot with some worn out batteries. I did however plan my outfit perfectly for once. I seem to always underestimate the weather when we go, thinking the temperature won’t feel as hot or as cold as it really does. Not this time, I was finally on the money. I chose a comfy little t-shirt style dress that didn’t hug or dig into my belly, the comfiest sneakers that I own, and a cozy sweater from Evystree for the cool morning and evening hours. Score! Also, I know I’m overdue for sharing the story of how Christian proposed so I’ll include that below. Eeek!
How He Asked
Let me start by saying that I was an impatient brat and I am surprised that Christian didn’t run for the hills. We went to a small Christian college where the typical timeline for couples was date for a year, get engaged, and get married a year later. So, when we had been dating for about a year and a half I started to get antsy. We went back and forth about ideal times and ways we could make getting married work, but not matter how many “perfect” plans I could come up with for the immediate future, Christian’s answer was always “I don’t feel like its the right time yet”. Talk about the worst thing to hear from your boyfriend, I started to wonder if there ever would be a right time. I will say that looking back now I am SO thankful for that season of waiting. It allowed me to build my trust in Christian and his ability to lead our family prayerfully.
So, just as I was about to give up all hope, he gave a little nugget of hope. He shared at the end of summer 2012 (after we had been dating a little over two years) that he hoped we would be engaged by the end of the year. You can imagine that from that point on I would imagine everything as potential proposal. It was exhausting trying my best to always look “proposal perfect”. Months went by, and I still didn’t have a proposal. I must add that he knew what sort of style ring I liked but we never went shopping together and I didn’t give him any specific ring guidelines, so the whole time I just hoped he would get it right. Talk about stress! (LOL!)
The end December rolled around and we were getting ready to see each other for a holiday party with Christian’s friends and family. I was a little bitter about the fact that I still wasn’t engaged and a little bummed that we wouldn’t be getting to spend the holiday together that year. Since that the case, this party would be the last time we’d see each other until after Christmas. I was frantically wrapping gifts for him and his family, trying my best to get in my cutest holiday getup, and also finishing a final paper for my teaching credential program (I can be a bit of a procrastinator). All this to say is that I was running late. When Christian showed up to pick me up he was visibly frustrated that I was running late.
This is where I have to interject that before that party he had mentioned that he wanted to go down to the beach right at sunset (his family lives in Redondo Beach) to take some photos. He was just getting super involved in photography and Instagram so he was always looking for a photo op. Now I totally understand, but at the time as an insecure girlfriend, it was merely another thing that was taking time and attention away from me. His grumpiness at my running late sent me into a nice little fit where I complained that I could care less about stupid photos and that what I was spending time on that made me late was far more important.
The whole drive down to Redondo we were as cold as ice toward each other. I don’t think we really talked until I noticed that he kept glancing out the window and I realized why. I think I said something like “Stop looking at the stupid sun, if it sets before we get there and you don’t get a dumb photo, who cares.” To which I don’t think he even replied to. Well, luckily we made it down to the beach before sunset and I stood on the sand in my coat shivering.
Then he asked me to walk out on the rocky, slippery jetty for him to get a photo. I protested. He somehow convinced me to go out there and I was so grumpy the whole time complaining about the waves splashing around everywhere. He had me look out at the sunset while he stood behind me taking the photo. Next I felt him next to me hugging me, and as we watched the sunset I decided maybe this wasn’t the worst thing ever. I noticed as he held me that he was shaking and I wondered why he didn’t bring a warmer jacket.
What happened next made it obvious why he had started shaking as he carefully got down on one knee on those wet and slippery rocks. In part disbelief and part fear of slipping and falling I started to get down with him. He quickly told me to get up and said a few sweet things that neither of us remember. The next part I do remember, because he asked me to marry him and pulled out the ring and I screamed “SHUT UP!”. Next came hugging and kissing and giggling back to the shore as Christian pointed out two of our friends who had been hiding to take photos. (Fun fact: apparently they heard the “shut up” all the way where they had been hiding).
We walked back to the car in a blur and I stared at my perfect ring in disbelief. It all started to make sense why he had been so antsy to get me out the door and to make it to the beach before sunset. Oops. So as we got into the car he asked if I wanted to stop by his parents before the party to take a few minutes to calm down and fix my makeup (after the tears). What a sweet and thoughtful fiance I had! We walk up to the door and as I swing it open we are met by a sea of familiar faces and before anyone can get out a word I shout “surprise”. I am not good with surprises you guys, I tend to get a little awkward.
It turns out that there was no holiday party and that this whole thing was an elaborate plan to get me looking cute and get my butt down to the beach for the proposal and then a party with out family and close friends. That was one of my favorite nights ever. Then less that five months later we were married and it was the most perfect wedding I could have ever dreamed up.
Maybe I’ll share that later?