Brianna and Michael

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How We Met

Mike and I met through mutual friends and CrossFit. We were introduced as friends several years ago but at the time were both dating other people. Mike always tells the story that he knew there was something about me from the first day we met. Throughout the years we hung out in larger groups but did not talk much one on one. That all changed in September 2015 when it was our mutual friend’s birthday. We were both out of our previous relationships and single at the same time. My friend has told me that Mike had asked about me a few times over the years and that I should go and talk to him. Well, I did and we spent about an hour talking about ourselves, our lives and our mutual love of CrossFit. After that night I friend requested Mike on Facebook and pretended not to freak out when he did not message me right away! Once he did (three days later!!) we started messaging daily and texting from there as well. On his birthday, October 7th, we went to get frozen yogurt and he brought along his pitbull Bella, my current four-legged daughter, who sealed the deal! Our first date was on October 10th and was also the night of our first kiss. Fun fact; Mike walked me to my door but was too chicken to kiss me first so I made the first move. As they say, the rest is history….

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how they asked

It was no secret to Mike that I wanted to be engaged. We talked about it, we looked at rings, and for me, the day could not come soon enough. Mike and I currently live in Florida, but I am from NY and that’s where my family lives. He knew it was very important to me that my family be there for the proposal, as well as his family. This was a logistical nightmare for him! Our calendars were already filled with several other weddings, events, and obligations. I waited for the day very patiently (yeah, right). I anticipated the day of the engagement, where it would happen and when it would happen. As my two-year engagement timeline came and went I attempted to micromanage something that Mike wanted to be the most magical day of my life. I had to let go and give him the space he needed (with a few hiccups/tears/attitudes along the way).

After a stressful week at work, Mike came home on Thursday, May 3rd and said I have a question but you can’t get mad, so obviously I began to get mad inside but tried to hide it. His question was simple, north or west? I was a bit confused but decided to go with north, New York was north, our favorite city, St. Augustine was north so why not? After blurting out north, he said “Ok, well then pack a bag because I have a bed and breakfast booked in St. Augustine for tomorrow night and Saturday. I was excited by this idea but then my usual anxiety set in: Who would watch the dog? We need to go grocery shopping! Laundry needs to be done, the house is a mess! After talking myself down I went to pack my clothes, where Mike proceeded to have me try on the outfits I was bringing (this is not usual for him but after knowing he had a bad week at work, I went along with it). So with our bags packed and work over on Friday we left for the ride to St. Augustine, at this point I was more relaxed and excited to spend some alone time with Mike after a busy few months. We checked in and grabbed a late dinner and drinks before heading back to the B&B. Saturday morning Mike suggested we check out some new spots around St. Augustine we had not been to before. So after a relaxing breakfast with a beautiful view, we got ready to leave for the day. This is where the proposal story starts.

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As I was picking out an outfit to wear, a very casual, ready to walk around town all day, seemingly appropriate outfit, Mike asked me to change. Say what? How dare he have an opinion on what I wear? (Mind you he usually doesn’t, so this seemed weird and I was instantly annoyed ). After some back and forth, I eventually changed into a white dress I had brought since he claimed we would be going to a nice lunch. Upon leaving the B&B I was still a little annoyed but decided to not let it ruin our day. We headed to the Lightner Museum, where they have a courtyard that had some shops, a pretty coy fish pond and beautiful greenery. Mike then asked if I wanted to feed the fish. My response: Um, no, why would I want to hold fish food right now? At this point the poor guy was probably sweating bullets and if you know me, I was being my typical self. He then asked if I would just walk across the footbridge with him and I obliged. Once we were on the footbridge he said look over there (at something but I can’t remember what)! I looked and then turned back to see him down on one knee.

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I was completely and utterly shocked! It had crossed my mind for a second when he asked me to change but after months of going back and forth about being engaged, I did not let myself think too much of it. I’m pretty sure my response was, are you serious? Are you serious? I was in such shock and amazement that I can’t recall everything he said at the moment except “this is perfect”. And it truly was. Little did I know at the time but I had actually liked my exact ring on the ring designer’s site a few weeks prior!. Once the shock settled down for a second, I heard people shouting our names, only to turn around and see my whole family, my mom, my dad, two brothers and mema, along with his parents and sister running towards us.

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I completely lost it, tears of joy ran down my face as we embraced the people who mean the most to us. I will never forget these moments. The thought, time and logistical planning that Mike put into our engagement amazes me. We were engaged in “our” place, the place we first went to on a trip together, the place he first met my parents and the place where he told me he loved me for the first time. I am overjoyed to begin our lives together and to bring two wonderful, supportive and amazing families together. Life could not be sweeter.

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Special Thanks

Danielle Brooks
 | Photographer