Elizabeth and Sean

Elizabeth's Proposal in Dickerson Park Zoo

How We Met

I met Sean in 2015, but I don’t really remember meeting him. We both work in dentistry and had met through the doctor I work for. He (the doctor) introduced us at a medical conference, and Sean remembered me. Again, I don’t recall meeting him. Sean started his own company in 2016 and was reaching out to different offices about the services his company provides.

Marriage Proposal Ideas in Dickerson Park Zoo

When he messaged me about setting a meeting with my practice, we started keeping in regular touch. Neither of us really remember when things turned romantic, but it wasn’t too far in to our daily contact. We connected on so many levels and have so much in common. It’s unlike anything I’ve ever experienced.

Elizabeth and Sean's Engagement in Dickerson Park Zoo

how they asked

Let’s just start by saying I have a mild to moderate obsession with giraffes. Like… I almost love them more than I love Sean. On our second date I told him all I wanted in life was to pet one, feed it, and let it lick my face. Then I could die happy. Hashtag goals, right? So, last Christmas, his proposal plan kicked into motion, without my knowledge and with months to go before everything would come to fruition. I jokingly told Sean I wanted a giraffe for Christmas. “Only a giraffe and maybe some Kate Spade.” That was it. I never thought anyone would really pull it off, though. How do you buy someone a giraffe these days? Where would I keep it?

What do they eat? Am I supposed to put it on a leash and walk it? As you can see, the struggles of giraffe ownership are real. I never in a million years thought Sean would be able to pull anything related to owning my own giraffe. But… I was wrong. He adopted one for me! He found a local zoo that had a baby giraffe to adopt! Christmas morning rolled around, and I happily tore into my presents. Inside the last one, I opened it to find a little long-necked fur baby to love and enjoy (from a distance). He made me a “Zoo Mama” and got me photos and other mementos of my new baby (who lives at a local zoo).

Sean called the Dickerson Park Zoo down in Springfield, MO about setting up a meeting between myself and my 14’ bundle of animal kingdom joy. I randomly decided to take a Monday off work and Sean told me he had a client meeting in Springfield that he really wanted me to come to. So of course I agreed (us dental nerds have to stick together). However, after a long car ride, she pulled off the highway and into the zoo. A zoo? What are we doing here!? When we arrived at the zoo, I was surprised to say the least. I asked Sean, “Why are we at the zoo?”. He told me that I was going to get to see and feed my giraffe and his friends, and that they were all mine! To say I was excited is putting it mildly. I’ve seen toddlers with ADHD… jacked up on sugar… on Christmas morning… who were less excited than I was at that moment.

They escorted us into the park and I had NO idea the proposal was coming. Sean had a photographer there, “to capture your giraffe moment in amazing HD clarity. You want nice pictures to show your friends, don’t you?”. The fact there was a photographer waiting didn’t phase me (I tell you, he planned this thing to a T). I walked up the platform and was given a package of goodies to start feeding my new friends. I was so happy and I never had smiled so big in my entire life. Sean slowly walked up behind me and said, “Babe, are you happy?” To which I said, “Duh.” No really, I said duh. He dropped to one knee, said my full name (I instructed him to do so if he ever proposed), and asked me to marry him.

I figured I would have started crying at this point but I literally just stood there in shock, smiling. “Wait, are you proposing right now? Is this for real?” After about five or six iterations of “really” and “are you serious”, I finally said yes. The zoo was awesome and had a lot of amazing things in store for me after Sean asked.

They brought Grady over and allowed him to paint a couple of canvas paintings, with his face, to keep as mementos. They also gave me a stuffed giraffe and free passes to come back on our one year wedding anniversary. Local news even picked up the story, which is crazy but fun! We were kind of a big deal… for a day anyway.

After I said yes, we walked back to the car and Sean had my “Bride to be” gift waiting for me. A wine glass, a coffee mug he knew I wanted (Does this ring make me look engaged?), and a Kate Spade wedding planner. Yes, those exist. It was absolutely perfect. God truly blessed me with an amazing man and he gave me an incredible ability and generous heart to come up with the most perfect proposal ever, just for me.

It’s true, when you put your faith in Christ, doors will open and everything will fall into place. It was such a perfect day (next to the wedding day of course)!