How We Met
Garrett and I met in 2013, our sophomore year of undergrad, through my best friend Megan. Garrett was pursuing nursing while I was looking into switching my major to pursue speech-language pathology. Garrett was very shy at first and I would go to the pub on campus where he would hang out just to try to talk to him. I invited him to a Zumba class at the gym on campus and to my surprise he said yes. We went on a couple of casual hangouts with friends after that and then he asked me out on an official date. Garrett and I have been extremely comfortable with each other from the beginning of dating. That whole “I feel like I met you in a past life” is how we have felt about each other since the beginning.
He has always given me a sense of calmness, comfort, and we have always motivated each other to be the best versions of ourselves. As soon as we started dating, my GPA jumped and I started consecutively getting on the president’s honor roll. We’re competitive so we wanted to see who could get the most A’s. We both had big goals for our careers and worked side by side to make those goals come to fruition. It’s honestly surreal looking back on how far we’ve come. There were so many hurdles to jump, I am a first-generation Latina and he is a first-generation college student. Now, we are so lucky to be able to say we are working our dream jobs, he is a nurse practitioner and I am a speech-language pathologist.
How They Asked
We’ve been together for 7 and a half years and from very early on we knew we wanted to get married. It was never a question of if, but a question of when. We both wanted to wait for a time where we were financially stable and could afford to pay for our wedding and home.
One of the things I am most appreciative of is our ability to openly communicate. Since the beginning of 2020 we talked about getting engaged but then, you know, COVID HAPPENED.
We live separately, so since the start of the pandemic, we quarantined away from each other since he was working crazy hours in the medical unit and I was learning how to switch from in-person speech therapy to virtual WFH life. It was the hardest months we have been through. I cried more than I ever have which I think many people can relate to. It is so difficult to be away from the person you love during such stressful and uncertain times.
Garrett has always been super romantic, for my 20th birthday he wrote me 20 love poems, he always gets me gorgeous floral bouquets on my birthday/Valentine’s day/for no reason days to show me he’s thinking of me. That’s the type of gushy/classic 90’s Rom-Com cute love we’re into. So I know he was stressing out trying to figure out the most sentimental and special way to propose. We talk about everything and I am the type of person who guesses the end of the movie before it happens (aka very hard to surprise). So I made a promise to try to not think about it too much and let him plan his little heart out, which was so hard to do cause I’m metiche (nosy).
Around fall 2020 he started acting WEIRD so I had a feeling something was up, but with the pandemic, I knew it may take a minute. I was so suspicious with his secret phone calls, constantly texting and turning his phone away from me but then all fall nothing happened. Speed up to late January and Garrett was acting super chill which threw me off. I was expecting him to act nervous and stressed, but around me, he was as calm as ever. Later, I found out that so many things the week of the proposal went so wrong. He had to secretly cancel my Friday afternoon work meeting so we could get to the location on time, there was a 70% chance of rain that afternoon, and I almost accidentally gave him a black eye the night before while we were working out.
Almost giving him a black eye the night before the proposal: The night before the proposal Garrett and I worked out together and boxed the way we usually do. I accidentally punched too hard and punched Garrett right in the eye. We can laugh about it now but at that moment Garrett remained super calm (It’s as if he’s a nurse practitioner and works in high-stress situations all the time), went to the freezer, grabbed a bag of peas, and started icing his eye. I was so worried I gave him a black eye and started texting my best friends who convinced me it was a normal week because if he was going to propose wouldn’t he have freaked out?! I was like, right…that makes sense…okay…no proposal, he’s being way too normal! I apologized about 100 times and Garrett forgave me and said that he loves me even more now that he knows I have a backup career as a UFC fighter.
The proposal: On the day of the proposal, Garrett came over and we took a drive to Palos Verdes. I got all dressed up because this is a typical date for us; we get all cute, go for a drive and take some pictures at pretty locations (Garrett loves photography). He threw me off more by taking me to two random locations and yet again, acting super calm!!!! Then at around 2:30 pm, he tells me he wants to go to one of our favorite spots because the forecast said it might rain and he wanted to get there before that happened. We parked and started walking, the park overlooks the ocean, and the weather was PERFECT. We turned the corner and I see a DREAM picnic set up (which I later found out my best friend Denise who just started her amazing picnic company set-up). Literally better than anything I could have dreamed up.
But while we’re walking up to the picnic, this eccentric lady with a giant camera was aggressively taking photos of the picnic set-up. So I thought “wait, so is this, not the engagement because who is this lady?!” We get close to it and she looks at me and says totally shocked “Oh is this picnic set up for you?!?!” I was SO confused and thought I was on a prank show. I turn around to ask Garrett what the heck is going on and he is on one knee taking a pink box out of his camera bag. I immediately starting crying and said, “you’re really not messing around right now!?” He was NOT. I forgot about everything around us and soaked in that beautiful moment.
I could hardly see him because my tears were blurring my vision. When he opened the ring box I almost fell over (dramatic, I know!). The most PERFECT RING and it fit PERFECT. I said YES, we kissed and when I looked up there was our actual photographer (who was NOT the original lady who was aggressively taking photos) but was one of our favorite photographers, Tressa, that I had been following on Instagram and gushing over all her gorgeous photos. We had a photo session with Tressa and then enjoyed the rest of our afternoon at the picnic. Literally the perfect afternoon; the champagne, the delicious hors d’Oeuvers, the roses, the ring, my handsome and incredible FIANCE. It was a dream come true for both of us.
Garrett, I love you in this lifetime and every lifetime after this one. I cannot wait to marry you, take your last name, and make my initials A.S.S. and have it monogrammed on a velour tracksuit.