Heather and Zach
How We Met
I remember seeing Zach freshman year of college at an Oregon State University Honors College event and thinking to myself, “that’s the guy I had a crush on in middle school!”. Zach and I attended the same elementary and middle school before ending up at different high schools. We were as friendly as middle school kids could be…Zach hung out with the boys and I hung out with girls. In our years of grade school together, we probably only spoke one time about the books we were reading. We spent most of the honors college event catching up on everything from middle school to our high school experiences.
Throughout the first year at OSU, I invited Zach to hang out any time the Honors College was planning an event. I enjoyed spending time with him and having a familiar face at events. Eventually, we went our separate ways after the first year; I became more involved in my sorority and Zach started focusing more on school and involvement with his leadership position at the church. We didn’t see each other much over the next couple years of college until one day, spring term I asked Zach to walk with me to the city library to get a library card. I loved reading and wanted something to read over the summer but didn’t want to walk to the library alone.
Zach was sweet enough to walk me to the library and even let me convince him to get his own library card. We spent the rest of the day talking and baking chocolate chip cookies. Zach gave me some really great life advice about accountability during one of our conversations. At that moment, I knew he was someone I needed to keep in my life. His perspective was refreshing as well as encouraging. A couple of weeks later at the end of spring term, I called Zach to see if he’d help me move into the resident halls where I was going to be a resident assistant (RA) but he was out of town and agreed to hang out when he got back.
He came back to Corvallis on weekends over the summer to continue leading worship at his church. One Sunday, he suggested I come with him to church. Eager to start my summer off on a more purposeful note and help my faith grow, I biked to the church that Sunday and almost every Sunday following. Zach would come over to campus after church and we’d talk, walk in the sun and play pool. I loved our conversations that lasted hours, he was someone I could joke with and confide in. Our friendship continued into the school year where he finally asked me out on a date to be his girlfriend. Our relationship grew from there with many ups, downs and even a breakup. We hung out often spending time hiking, cooking new recipes, backpacking through the Mt Hood forest, and visiting Zach’s dad’s cabin where I built my first fire!
how they asked
The summer after Zach graduated from OSU and I completed my first year of the OSU doctorate of pharmacy program, we started discussing spending our lives together. We realized we built so many wonderful memories together and shared similar values and couldn’t imagine living without the other person which lead us to a magical day in September 2017. Zach planned the perfect proposal on top of the nines hotel at the restaurant Departure during sunset in Portland. We went up to the rooftop to get cocktails before our dinner reservation. He pulled me to a corner of the rooftop where I could see the sun setting across the city and held my hands as he told me, “I’ve been waiting a long time to do this.”
He told me how amazing I am and how I’ve helped him become a better man, he then got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. With the biggest smile on my face, I hugged him and gave him the most ecstatic YES!
We celebrated our engagement with a week in Bali, Indonesia where we toured temples, went windsurfing and relaxed on the beach. On the way back from Bali we stopped in Tokyo to tour the Narita-san temple. On the way back to the airport we were in a hurry and I saw a train that was about to close its doors and leave so I jumped on.
Zach realized the train was faced the wrong direction going away from the airport and without hesitation, he jumped on the train with me so I wouldn’t be alone in Japan as the train took off away from the airport. Looking back I realized that is true love. Following your partner, so they won’t be alone, even if they aren’t going the “right way”. Our time in Bali solidified our desire to share our travels and lives together, we look forward to so many more adventures together starting with our wedding day!