Hanna and Patterson's Proposal on Santa Rosa Beach
How We Met: Patterson and I met in his kitchen, in August of 2012. He was roommates with my roommate’s boyfriend, and I had gone over there on a Friday night before heading over to his and his roommate’s fraternity house for a party. At first we didn’t speak very much, but later in the night we sat down talked for what seemed like hours! At the end of the night, he managed to get my number and we texted nonstop in the days following.
After that first night, we were hanging out every weekend, talking nonstop, went on a few dates, and went to a few of my sorority and his fraternity date parties together. In the end of September, his parents had come into town for a football game (roll tide!), and I happened to be hanging out at his house with my roommate when Patterson and his parents got back from dinner. I was extremely nervous to meet them because I wasn’t quite sure how Patterson felt about me and exactly where our relationship stood. All my questions were answered when they walked up to me and he said, “this is my girlfriend, Hanna.”
how they asked: I knew I loved Patterson 2 months into our relationship and I knew I wanted to marry Patterson about 2 years later. I have a history of having bad birthdays, and Patterson knew that.
An example of a bad birthday: I found out my mother had cancer the night before my 22nd birthday. So my 23rd birthday was coming up (which happens to be 3 days after Patterson’s), and Patterson had his spring break the week leading up to it.
He suggested that we go to his parent’s condo in Santa Rosa Beach, like we had done the year before and for many other trips.
I of course agreed, but wasn’t too excited because I hadn’t been there since I found out my mother’s diagnosis the year before. A few days had gone by on our trip and we had reservations at our favorite restaurant down there on Tuesday night.
As we were getting ready for dinner, Patterson mentioned that the weather had been beautiful and it seemed like it was going to be a nice sunset so we should walk down to the beach if we had time. We, of course, did have time and walked down to the beach just in time for the gorgeous sunset.
As we were walking along, Patterson got really quiet and was acting kind of strange- so much so that I even asked him what was going on!
We walked up to the waters edge and we were just looking out at the ocean, when I turned to him and noticed he was starting to tear up. At that moment, he said, “you know I love you, right?” and I started crying because it finally hit me that this was happening.
He then got down on one knee and said “I love you so much, will you marry me?” I was crying too much and was in too much shock to reply so I nodded my head a good bunch before finally being able to say yes.
After many kisses and hugs (and tears), he pointed up to the dunes to a little photographer who got photos of the whole thing! And even more special, the next day he had my parents fly down and a few days later his parents came so we were all able to celebrate together! While it didn’t happen on my exact birthday, my 23rd birthday was definitely one that I don’t think will ever be beat!
Photos by: Haylee Huffman