how we met
How did we meet and was it just love at first sight? It’s a bit of a read, but if you stay with it, you might even shed a tear or 2 or be impacted in some way. First of all, I’m not sure that I’ve ever believed in love at first sight…well, that was until I met Cristina! On Valentines Day, 2014, I was on match.com looking for the next man I would date…yep, apparently I was the only one who believed that my next serious relationship would be with a man. So, back to Valentines Day…I decided to look on match and just “casually see” what was on the “other side.” I searched Dallas because I did not want anyone in Shreveport (where I live) to know. Cristina’s profile popped up 4th and wow, was she gorgeous. She was also healthy, successful, intelligent, a “foodie”, educated and made it clear that the role she took the most serious was being a Mom.So, the initial email went like this…Shelley, “Hi, I just saw your profile and I love it. This is my first rodeo and I would love to get to know you.” Cristina, “What do you mean this is your first rodeo?’ Shelley, “Well I’ve never been in a serious relationship with a woman and I would love to meet you.” Cristina’s response resembled no return email and a bunch of crickets. To say that was hard on the ego was an understatement! So, I did what any great marketing person would do, I said (and to clue you in, she was the executive assistant to the CEO and President of Chuck E Cheese’s corporate office)…”Hey, you may not be interested, but if your company needs any team building, this is my website (www.rocksolidimpactcenter.com)… yea that 8 minute video stole her heart!!!! (and got me way more than I bargained for)…
how they asked
The whole thought of the proposal is comical. For 3 years, every time we traveled, Cristina thought I was going to propose and it was so sad that we would end dinner and her face would be so sad. And I would be like, “What’s wrong?” and she would say, “I really thought this was the night you were going to propose. It’s the perfect time and place.” And I would follow by saying, “Cristina, I am not going to propose on a day that makes sense, and not on a holiday, or anywhere public. It will be when you least expect it.” I’m certain that she never thought it would happen. So, because the ring was being designed and made specifically for her, I was uncertain when I would actually get it and I knew once it was in my hands, that I would not be able to hold onto it very long. The ring arrived on December 21, 2018. I quickly had one of my employees make me a 5 minute video with pictures and a few quotes with music behind them. I then called Cristina’s work partner and told her to get Cristina out of work by 5 by saying we were going to dinner with she and her husband. Cristina busted through the door and was like, ” Come on, we have to leave as soon as I run to the bathroom.” and I said, “Cristina, can you please sit down? MY guys made us a video for a Christmas present and I’ve been dying to watch it, but have been waiting on you.” So, we sat down on our living room ottoman, and I was certain that once the video started with the Love music that she would know. The first song came on (You are the Reason by Callum Scott) and I thought, she knows! My leg was shaking and my guys were behind my Christmas tree filming. She still hadn’t realized what was going on. The second song starts (I Get To Love You by Ruelle) and she still doesn’t know whats happening. We are laughing at the pics and sharing sentimental moments and NOTHING FROM HER REALIZING WHAT WAS HAPPENING. So, when I took Cristina to NYC, she was sitting on a bench in Central Park and I walked up to her and said, “If I didn’t know you and I saw you sitting on a bench in Central Park, I would want to know you.” That started a trend with both of us saying, “If I didn’t know you and I saw you….” So the end of the video is my voice over and it says, “If I didn’t know you and I saw you sitting in my living room, I would want to spend the rest of my life with you.” I got down on one knee and said, “You have given up ALOT for me. You gave up your home in Dallas, you gave up being closer to your kids (they are 21 and 20), you gave up your career and your friends in Dallas and I’m asking you to give up one more thing…your last name.” Cristina went crazy. She is a lover of life and spends most days really excited and she was jumping up and down and kept asking if this was real. Our lives have been incredible since.