How We Met
Matthew and I met on the second day of freshman orientation at Lake Forest College during the Sunday night middle campus carnival. The night was about to end until a new friend introduced a group of us girls to the fellow freshmen on the men’s basketball team. From the moment we exchanged names, we connected. That night, we chatted for hours and then he asked me for my Instagram handle and number!
After a couple of weeks of getting to know each other, Matthew took a special opportunity to ask me to be his girlfriend. In 2008, I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes — on September 22 to be exact. With my upcoming ‘diaversary’, I had told Matthew that this was going to be a difficult day for me, as it was every year, and to not take it personally if I was sad or upset. That evening, he took me to the local beach to take my mind off of things. We sat on a bench overlooking the water and talked about everything — family, hardships, happy memories. He then took me by surprise by asking me to be his girlfriend — specifically on that day in hopes that what used to be a painful day could be one to celebrate instead. This day has become so special for us as our past 6 anniversaries have continued to be filled with love, happiness, and hope.
We now live together in Austin, Texas with our sweet golden retriever, Lucy!
How They Asked
For Christmas this year, Matthew and I decided to visit my family in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. To say I was surprised about the proposal would be an understatement. After 6 years of dating, I predicted an engagement was in the future for us, but I did not expect it to happen when it did!
The night before Christmas Eve, my mom suggested visiting Fearrington Village the following afternoon to take beautiful Christmas photos before mass. My sister and grandparents were also visiting for the holiday and got excited by the idea. Knowing how much my family and I enjoy taking photos — plus, I always could use photos for my blog — I agreed delightfully.
On the morning of Christmas Eve, I was enjoying a slow, bliss morning — not suspecting what was about to come. While I got ready with my sister, the men in the house — Matthew, my dad, and my grandpa — let us know they needed to head to the mall to do some last-minute Christmas shopping (also — not shocking for my family). I was bummed Matthew wasn’t going to make it for the photos, but just shook it off.
Once my mom, sister, grandma and I arrived at Fearrington Village, I walked on over to one of my favorite rooms to take photos in. There were a beautiful Christmas tree and a warm fire. Although it was gorgeous, my mom quickly mentioned we should find better lighting for photos and suggested heading to the sunroom. We walked on over and noticed the sunroom was also the entrance to the Fearrington Garden. We opened the door to another beautiful Christmas tree, but this time, as I walked around it, I found Matthew standing in front of me, down the steps into the garden.
I was immediately shocked!
The first words I blurted out were, “Aren’t you supposed to be shopping?”. After he laughed, he said, “just come on down here!”
As I descended the steps, I knew I was walking to my forever. My heart was racing and my eyes were tearing up.
Matthew shared how much he loved me and wanted to spend forever together. He then dropped to one knee and asked me the famous question, “Will you marry me?”…and I said yes!
We kissed, laughed, cried, and he put the ring on my finger. As I turned around, my family was awaiting us with open arms.
We took photos in the garden, FaceTimed his family, and then proceeded to a celebratory lunch. There was no better way I could have imagined the moment!