How We Met
Tatjana’s point of view:
We met through mutual friends. On a cold, December evening, Christopher reached out to me to see how I was doing. A simple greeting turned into a 6-hour conversation. The entire conversation was effortless. I remember the entire conversation, from start to finish. What felt like minutes turned into hours. Before I knew it, 6 hours had flown by and it was almost morning the next day. My thoughts and words had never flown so freely. As tired as we both were that early morning, I remember not wanting to end it there. We talked about anything and everything under the sun and had far more in common than we thought. We continued to talk over the winter and had an incredible first-date at the Vu Bar overlooking the water. It was a time to get to know one another. I vividly remember the waitress telling us we reminded her of a young and in-love married couple. That evening was a bliss. We stayed on the same couch for hours sharing our passions and dreams; talking about our families, hobbies, travel stories, cultures, upbringings, careers. I remember my cheeks hurting from smiling and laughing so much. I felt like I knew Chris for years and knew that it was the start of something absolutely beautiful.
A few months into our relationship, Chris was accepted into Logan University College of Chiropractic in Chesterfield Missouri. I was already in my first year of medical school at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. We were both incredibly thrilled for this new opportunity, even if it meant having to do long-distance. Although we were only together for 6 months when he initially moved away, we both felt like we knew each other for a lifetime. The 6 months was just a number and we both know that what we had was deeper than we could describe. We were ready to tackle long-distance-there was no hesitation, just pure excitement. I’m thrilled to say that we conquered the long-distance. We would see each other in person every 2-3 months, but talked every single day. We witnessed first-hand the meaning of the saying “Distance makes the heart grow fonder.” We can say that our long-distance relationship brought us more closer together than we could ever imagine.
Chris’s point of view:
There was this girl that I met through mutual friends that I decided to reach out to one evening. One coffee date, lead to multiple coffee dates, our first date to the Vu Bar in Windsor. To be honest, I was not sure whether or not she would talk to me again after my Dodge Charger got stuck in the snow on her street not once, twice but three times! We managed to get free, but unfortunately did not make it in time before the coffee shop closed that evening. The first few weeks of dating Tatjana, it seemed as if she was placed into my arms for a reason. Each time we hung out, I felt butterflies, still do, and I also felt this feeling that is hard to explain. I guess “when you know, you just know” ya know? From the first moment I looked into her beautiful green eyes, spoke to her for hours… I knew she was the one for me. With her or without her, she was always on my mind. Valentines day came around almost 4 years ago now, after a lovely dinner at the Keg, I asked her to be my better half – this was the beginning of our story.
Our relationship was not like a “typical” one. After dating Tatjana for 6 months, we were about to conquer something incredibly difficult, a long distance relationship. She knew how passionate I was for Chiropractic and supported me as I went on this 4 year journey away from home. I was off to St. Louis Missouri to earn my Doctorate of Chiropractic Degree. Both of us knew for a fact, that we could conquer this. Through the past 4 years, it definitely was not easy, but it made us stronger together. Through ups and downs, she was by my side through it all making it possible. Through the 4 years I would fly home every 3-4 months, or in between and she would fly to St. Louis to visit me. The hardest part of this was leaving the person you are so deeply in love with, after spending a week or two with them “till next time”. I am happy to say that, we are at the end of the road and we no longer have to leave each others side. Tatjana made all of this possible, she picked me up when I was down and kept me on track of my goals, despite going through Medical School herself.
I am truly blessed that Tatjana stepped into my life. She knows how to paint a smile on my face day in and out and I can’t wait till the day I walk down the aisle with her.
how they asked
Our engagement story begins with a flight out from St. Louis to Denver, Colorado for a 5-day vacation in the outdoors. Where do I begin the suspense? This trip was about to be the “Vacation we will never forget”. Tatjana was busy preparing for her Board exams and I had some free time in St. Louis at the time- so let the planning began! I decided that I wanted to plan out the perfect vacation and engagement while visiting Colorado. Roughly 4 months prior to our departure, I reached out to a photographer, Travis with Dramatic Focal Point, who helps plans and shoots adventurous engagements. Not only did I want to propose to the love of my life, ask her to by my wife, but I wanted to do it in the most magical place and capture all of it on camera! After communicating with Travis back and forth, we decided on a location and tentative game plan for this magical day inside Rocky Mountain National Park. The first thing he told me is the weather in Colorado is unpredictable. “Some days people are wearing flip-flops and other people are in 10 feet of snow,” he told me. When I heard this I thought GREAT, I really picked a difficult location for this! Up until the day we left, I was organizing this trip, making sure everything was perfect for my “bride-to-be”. Just when I thought it could not get more difficult, I was wrong. Phone service when your in the middle of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado is non-existent. I had to keep in touch with my photographer! Thankfully I was able to find an area that had wifi at our Air-B&B so I was able to contact him. My photographer had planned to do a “scouting hike” along the trail to Mills Lake the day before in order to insure the conditions were adequate enough to make it happen. The day before my planned proposal I get a message from Travis saying, “I hiked up the mountain. I could not see 2 feet in front of me, there was a blizzard.” All I thought was great, so this whole proposal thing is a complete “toss up”. Around 9 pm that night I finally get a confirmation message from my photographer, securing our plans for the next day. Please keep in mind that this entire time, from the moment we left St. Louis, jumped on the plane and the entire first day/hike, I had the ring with me! Stressful I know. The photographer in his last message, gave me a few landmarks to look for during this hike and said it took him roughly 1 hour to get up to the end of the trail, the Mills Lake.
May 11th, 2017 was here, the day to execute this master plan. After arriving to the trailhead parking lot I see Travis. He had told me to look for guy wearing a very bright blue backpack. We do a secretive hand sign to confirm we were both ready. He pulled a yellow Nalgene bottle out of his pack to flash to me. This bottle is going to be my marker. All of this occurs without Tatjana realizing a thing. Travis takes off on the trail. I waited about 15 minutes to give him adequate amounts of time to set up. The “1 hour hike” took us 2 hours! I thought for sure Travis would have taken off at this point, but I didn’t want to give away the surprise! Half way through the hike, Tatjana took the lead and went the wrong way on the trail and I followed her lead. I knew the whole time that we were going the wrong way, but did not want to totally give it away. We hiked about 30 minutes in the wrong direction, until we got back on track. We arrive at the Mills Lake, I see the area of where I am going to propose, on this big rock in the middle of Mills Lake. As we walk along the trail, I ask her to walk out on this big rock and “embrace the moment”, as we were surrounded by big snowy mountains with perfect visibility! Travis had told me that the weather could change in an instant. Yesterday was zero visibility and today was GORGEOUS! We really couldn’t have asked for better weather conditions.
As Tatjana looks into the mountains in the distance she says “ Chris, this is the best day of my life”. As she is still facing the mountains, I drop down on one knee and wait till she turns around. After waiting 2 minutes, I gave up and called her name took her hand, asked the question and she said YES! She started bawling, jumping and screaming of joy right after this moment.
She screamed “ We just got engaged” and caused an avalanche to occur right across the lake, it was amazing!
After a few minutes of letting her cry/enjoy the moment, I pointed over to the photographer telling her there was someone sitting there the entire time! She could not believe her eyes. The photographer was blended right in with the trees.
Travis came over afterwards, we did a photoshoot on top of the mountain, popped champagne and drank out of wine flutes. Mission Complete! I am now engaged to the love of my life and can’t wait for the day she becomes by wife!