How We Met
Esai and I met about 11 years ago (September 2006 to be exact). We met through one of his cousins who I happened to play soccer with back in middle school. Even though she and I we went to different high schools we still kept in touch once in a while through social media (MySpace back in those days). I remember it was summer after our freshmen year was over, when she reached out and asked me to be part of her quinceañera that October. I was super excited, just because that was the “thing” to come out in your friends quinceañeras during high school (well at least that’s how it is here in the small town where I’m from). The majority of our community is Hispanic, so it’s very common to have a quinceañera when a girl turns 15 (similar to a Sweet 16). So there I was a late evening in September at her house ready to begin quinceañera practice. Little did I know I was going to meet the love of my life there.
I remember that first day like it was yesterday. I was sitting down in the garage waiting for everyone to get there when I suddenly see him walking up to us. As soon as we made eye contact we both turned away immediately. I felt soooo nervous, it was such a crazy adrenaline rush, but it felt good. Right away I knew we were going to have something special. I don’t know if that’s what love at first sight is, but I think it was. I felt the chemistry right away without even knowing him and he did too. He later revealed to me that before we even met he had already heard about me and was anxious to meet me, he fell in love with me that very first day.
Anyways, we started practice and my partner never arrived, so of course Esai was there to save the day and make me feel a little bit less awkward…NOT. I was so nervous just having him around, but it was a good type of feeling though. We didn’t talk much he would throw jokes at me here and there during practice but that was about it. However, once practice was over it was obvious that he had said something about me to the guys because as he was leaving that night all the guys started saying “Byeeee Esaiiii” in a girly voice and turned to look at me. Then they asked me if I wasn’t going to give Esai a good-bye hug? I was like “Okkkkkk” this is super awkward, but I gave him a hug anyways (it’s not like I didn’t want to.LOL). Then like 5 minutes later one of the guys asks me if it’s ok to send my number to Esai. I was like “why didn’t HE ask ME for it?” trying to play hard to get, but of course I said “Sure go ahead”. In my mind I was like “HECK YES” LOL! And well the rest of that day is history.
From that day forward, we texted each other day and night (literally day and night). I would wake up to his good morning messages and go to sleep like at 4am to his goodnight messages. I don’t even remember missing any of the practices. For me, that was the highlight of my week, since it was the only time I got to see him. We went to different high school and had different friends, so it was hard to stay connected once his cousin’s celebration was over. We did distance ourselves quite a bit, we even went a few months without texting each other. But he didn’t give up on me and I didn’t either. The following summer he signed up for summer school at my high school just to see me and it was on July 7, 2007 that we officially became girlfriend and boyfriend.
10 years later… here I am saying YES to the one person who has fought with me through it all. High school, college, moving, long distance, fights, breakups, you name it. The road here has been absolutely challenging. We have had our ups and down, but like they say “Nothing Worth Having Comes Easy”. There’s a reason why we’ve made it this far; we are soulmates and nothing will ever change that. I am beyond excited to begin this journey as the Future Mr. and Mrs. Silva.
how they asked
Esai and I had planned to celebrate my 26th birthday on May 5th since my birthday (May 3rd) was on a Wednesday and we both had to work. So we figured going on a mini trip on the Cinco de Mayo weekend to celebrate my birthday would be fun. We had talked about going wine tasting to Napa, since I’ve been wanting to go there for a really long time now, but a week before my birthday he told me that his weekend request didn’t get approved and that he only had Friday May 5th off. So he suggested to spend that day in Monterey and then later have a nice romantic dinner in Santa Row in San Jose.
Once he said “romantic” I was like this isn’t normal, but I was OK sure why not. He then kept going and said he wanted us to dress up, which made me suspect even more, but I went along with it. It’s not like I didn’t see it coming we’ve been together 10 years now and I knew something like this was bound to happen any moment. So he picked me up that Friday and took me to Monterey for brunch. We went to one of our favorite spots “Loulou’s Griddle in the Middle”. He then mentioned again that he wanted us to dress up for dinner that night and I said “well I don’t have any nice dresses”, so he took me to the mall and bought me a few options that day. Then he dropped me back home and said he would return at 7pm to go to dinner. Once he dropped me off I went to my room and laid down in bed to rest for a while.
Then a few minutes later my sister got home from work and she asked where was Esai taking me to dinner. I said “I don’t know he just said somewhere nice and that I need to wear something nice too, he bought me some dresses” and I showed them to her. She said “Nah I don’t really like them I really like that pink dress you bought the other day” So she convinced me to wear it, which I thought was too nice just to wear for my birthday dinner. I had plans to wear the pink dress for my goddaughter’s baptism. But then she said, “well its not like you’re going to take pictures at dinner, you can wear it today and then wear it again for the baptism, no one will ever know you wore it today”. I was like that makes sense. But I was still skeptical about her trying to help me look extra nice for dinner.
Then everyone in my house started getting ready, they said they were heading out to my dad’s work annual potluck. I was like “Really” hummmmm ok this is getting more weird now, but I continued getting ready. At 7pm, there he was outside my house ready to head out. I got on the car and he had a rose sitting on my seat, then I asked “where are we going for dinner?” and he said it was a surprise. Then he said he had to pump gas and we stopped at a gas station going towards Monterey again. So I imagined that his plans to go to Santa Row change to Monterey. Once we finished pumping gas he got back on the car and said “Babe I have a surprise for you, but you can’t see, so I have to blind fold you”.
Once he said that I knew what was about to happen next. In that moment there were a million thoughts going through my head “what am I going to say, am I ready for this, where is he talking me, is it going to be at the beach, in Monterey, at a restaurant, in San Jose, ” Omg a million things were going through my mind. I was just quiet trying to figure out where he was driving me to. We didn’t drive much, I felt the drive was short from the gas station to where he parked. So I was like maybe he forgot something at home and we have to pick it up first, and then we’ll drive somewhere else. But no, he actually opened my door and made me get down. I was confused. I knew we were not at the beach because it wasn’t windy, and I couldn’t think of any nice restaurant in town where he could possible propose. I was totally thrown off where we were at.
He grabbed my hand and made me walk a couple feet away from the car when he said “ok, we are here” and took the blindfold off. Once I open my eyes a mariachi started playing a beautiful song called “Hermoso Cariño” (which i love). I saw a guy in front of us taking pictures/video. In my mind I was like “Omg this is really happening right now”. We were standing in the backyard of the YWCA of Watsonville. There were rose pedals all over the concrete, signs with love quotes, candles and torches lighted up all along the backyard. It was beautiful! He walked me through the hallway of roses and took me all the way to the back where there was a big red heart made out of rose pedals. He grabbed me tight from my hand and started saying how much he loved me, he was crying, I was crying, it was so emotional to see it all unwind down.
It was a dream come true for me. My soulmate/lover/friend was on his knee asking me to spend the rest of my life with him. And of course, I said YES!
We hugged and cried for a bit then he asked me to go dance the song with him in the middle of the courtyard and that’s when I saw both of our families coming out from behind the YWCA house. I felt a million emotions when I saw them. I was crying of happiness just to see them stand there while we danced. It was such an important moment that having our families be part of it was extremely meaningful for me. He did such an amazing job and I couldn’t be happier to begin this new chapter in our lives.