How We Met
Zach and I met when I was only 16 and he was 18 (I was a sophomore in high school and he was a senior). We went to rival high schools but had a few mutual friends. Zach found out who I was because one of his close friends had a crush on me. He reached out to me, but I was skeptical at first. I asked one of my close friends who ran cross country with him what he was like. My friend had only great things to say about Zach and I quickly became interested in this guy that I have never actually met. Zach asked me to breakfast before school one day. It is very unlike my character to be early to things, but for some reason I was so excited to meet this guy and ended up getting there 10 minutes early.
I got more and more nervous as time went on. I decided to go into the breakfast place and find a table. I continued to wait….and wait… In my mind I figured he just stood me up. It was past the time that we planned and at this point I was going to be late to school. I ended up getting my food, eating, and begin to leave the restaurant. I didn’t know if I should be more mad or embarrassed. Of course, as I am walking out the door I run into Zach. I give him the awkward, “Hey, it’s nice to meet you” greeting and give him a side hug. I didn’t know what to do at that point so I figured a hug would make it more awkward..? The weird thing was that instead of leaving mad or embarrassed, for some reason I left with a smile on my face.
I ended up meeting up with him again one more time before I knew this was something I wanted to tell my parents about. I NEVER told my parents about my crushes. But this guy was different. I ended up telling my mom about him and she told me months later she could tell something was different about him by the way I talked about this guy who I barely knew. Zach and I went on a few more dates before he told me his intentions of seriously dating me in August. I was so happy but also knew this relationship would have to be something I really wanted since he would be leaving for college the next week and I still had two more years of high school.
The first year of dating was difficult since we were both in different life stages. I was still living with my parents and dealing with high school stuff while he was trying to figure out who he was in college. Even through a breakup that year, I knew he was someone who I could see myself spending the rest of my life with. We didn’t stay broken up for long because we both came to that realization. The breakup actually made us stronger than before.
We continued dating the rest of my high school years and it was time for me to decide on where to go to college. I was in between a school that was only 3 hours from home and Baylor, which is 18 hours from home. I ended up choosing Baylor, and Zach and I had a lot of needed conversations about the future and our relationship. At this time, he got hurt and stopped running on the track team at his college. He decided he wanted to start looking at other colleges to transfer to. He toured Texas schools, knowing that I would probably end up there, and ended up loving Baylor too. He transferred the same year that I became a freshman at Baylor. I was nervous but excited about what the future was going to hold.
We have spent the past 3 years at Baylor together and it has been such a dream. In August we will have been together for 5 years and honestly each year has gotten better and better!
how they asked
I had just finished 7 weeks of camp in Tyler, Texas the night before. I had to wake up at 3:30am to drive to the airport. I spend the 4th of July weekend at my lake house in Ohio every year. It’s a huge family tradition and the lake house has many memories along with it. My great grandma and her husband built it, my parents had their first date at the lake house, I grew up going every summer, and Zach had come various times with my family. Zach and my parents picked me up from the airport and I was ecstatic to see them after being 7 weeks apart.
We had an hour drive to the lake house and Zach was acting weird. He just seemed nervous, but I blew it off and thought that it was just since we hadn’t seen each other in so long. We had talked about getting engaged, but I thought it was going to happen in the fall. I had just spent so many busy weeks at camp and did not even have time to consider the fact that he could possibly propose at the lake. I didn’t think he knew my ring size and my nails looked awful so I was almost positive it was not going to happen at the lake.
Little did I know, while I was at camp Zach talked to my parents, found out my ring size, and bought the most gorgeous ring. I had no idea. When we got to the lake, everything became extremely normal. It was a normal relaxing day outside. I laid out with my mom and aunt while Zach, my brother, and cousins played sports in the yard as my dad took pictures. I didn’t think it could get any better…but I was wrong. It could get much, much better. So my mom told me that morning that we were going to take family pictures at 6:00. My aunt and uncle just bought a house across the lake so the plan was to get ready and go there for pictures. My grandma is not doing well so it seemed very realistic why we were going to take family pictures with her and the rest of my relatives. I didn’t think twice about it.
Like I said, my nails looked horrid from camp. When I was sitting down by the lake with everyone, my mom brought down nail polish and started doing her nails. My first instinct was to do mine too since I hadn’t done them in weeks (Good thing I painted them). After I casually painted my nails, I went up to the house to get showered and ready. I was the last to get ready and I was expecting everyone to be sitting in the car waiting for me. To my surprise, when I stepped outside with Zach we saw my brother and his wife having my dad take pictures of them on the dock. Zach mentioned going to get a few pictures of us before we left for my aunt’s house. I never turn down a good picture, so I said yes and we headed to the dock. We got down there, and my brother and his wife started heading back to the house as we started taking pictures. Zach and I have taken pictures years before of us looking out at the lake, so he mentioned taking one of those.
I was confused why he wanted to but I said okay. Before I knew it, he was down on one knee and asking for my hand in marriage. WHAT?! I honestly don’t really remember what happened after that because it shocked me so much and it was so many emotions all at once. I was crying, he started tearing up, and my dad was crying. Five years together and we finally get to make steps into marriage. Also… the RING. He picked it out himself. It exceeded everything I ever wanted. I can’t stop looking at it even now. I didn’t even truly look at how amazing the ring was until moments after it happened. Zach then surprised me with flowers and pulled out his go pro from the boat, telling me that he recorded the whole thing!
After that, my family rushed to give us hugs. My brother who couldn’t make it was even pulled up on Facetime. We then went to my aunt’s house to see the rest of my family and have a celebration. It was such a fun and joyful night for everyone. After we got back to the house, there was a candlelight dinner set up for Zach and I on the deck. He shared with me that the first time he visited my lake house years ago, he knew he wanted to propose there. We got to actually talk about what happened and it finally settled in with me. He told me ..It was the perfect ending to the best day ever.