Alexandria and Ben
How We Met
We fell in love with the rolling hills of West Virginia. We first met in March 2016 when Ben was the first year doctoral student at West Virginia University and I was interviewing for acceptance into the program. There was an instant connection, and I later found out that upon my acceptance, Ben was quite happy. He was unofficially named my “mentor” and took his job very seriously. After multiple charming emails, a campus tour, and a WVU football game, we knew our connection was special. We are now more than just a couple – we are study buddies, workout partners, adventure seekers, dog parents, proud Mountaineers, and best friends.
How They Asked
After 2.5 wonderful years together, Ben decided to pop the question. It was a warm Tuesday morning and I had just finished my final year of classes and Ben had finished his final year of practicum training. We also ran a half-marathon two days earlier and wanted to hike to keep the legs loose. Ben woke up early that morning, made coffee and suggested a hike with Cooper on the Cheat Lake Trail. I thought little of the suggestion as it was a gorgeous spring day and we had hiked the trail numerous times. Little did I know, this hike would be the most thrilling of any we had ever done together.
Ben packed a backpack for Cooper, and at mile three I reached for a drink and realized there was an unusual bag inside the backpack. Ben told me he packed extra snacks for the hike just in case we stayed out past lunch. I believed the story, returned the water bottle and forged ahead down the trail. In the meantime, Ben took the ring out of the suspicious bag and put it in his pocket. He planned to propose at the three-mile mark, but he needed a few extra miles to compose himself before dropping to one knee. Five miles later, we were nearing the end of the trail and Ben paused to “tie his shoe.” I turned around to find Cooper and turned back to see Ben down on one knee, ring in hand, asking me to marry him. It was the easiest “yes” of my life. I (and Cooper) immediately jumped into Ben’s arms and agreed to forever.
P.S. You can tell by my outfit and nails that I had no idea I was going to get engaged on this particular day or hike! Oh, and check out Cooper’s smile!