How We Met
Lewis and I first met when we were in 9th grade. I initially saw him at our first high school football game and he was dating a friend of mine at the time. We ended up having study hall together and I would write on his hand “L <3 J” out of pure boredom (but secretly I wanted him to love me then). My plan of action didn’t work because we both dated other people on and off through high school and it wasn’t until a couple days before our senior year homecoming football game where he started to make moves. We both landed a spot on homecoming court and to our surprise…we were voted homecoming king and queen! However, we still continued to date the people we were on and off with.
Senior year was coming to an end and graduation parties were in full swing. I attended Lewis’ and he had a few drinks of ‘kool-aid’. He preceded to ‘”confess his love” to me, completely isolated where I had no where to run! (but it was kinda cute) I went along with the conversation and consoled him as I assumed he wouldn’t remember anything the next day but….he did. At this point, I had been single and I knew that Lewis was one of few guys left from high school I would actually hold a relationship with so I gave it a shot. Typically, this would be prime time for couples to use college as an excuse to call it ‘quits’ but I suppose we were an exception to the rule and started dating shortly after we graduated. A few bumps in the road and 6 years later, we are on ‘how they asked’ to tell our story:) The picture below is Lewis and I when we shared our ‘first dance’ together as homecoming king and queen. The song was “Let It Burn” by Usher…and he still serenades me to this song.
how they asked
Brace yourself, this baby is a novel but I couldn’t leave out any parts! It was the weekend after Lewis’ 24th birthday and he had mentioned the week before that he wanted to travel to a neighboring city to have dinner with another couple. It was the morning of June 25th and he wanted to be in Destin, FL by 1:30pm because he had “tee time.” We packed our bags and Lewis’ golf clubs (the golf bag plays a key role in the proposal) and then we were on our way. As we were driving, he asked what I wanted to do while he golfed with our friend, Tyler. I mentioned that I would do whatever Briley (Tyler’s girlfriend) wanted to do since I don’t know much about the area. I texted Briley and she mentioned that she needed to get her nails done since she hadn’t in awhile. Side note: I am one of the most gullible humans to ever walk this earth, I genuinely thought it was a good idea because I would never say ‘no’ to getting my nails done. (Lewis told Briley to take me to get my nails done as one of my pre-requisites of being proposed to.)
We arrive to the hotel to meet Tyler and Briley, and Lewis decided to take my car to drive to the “golf course.” Tyler gets out of Briley’s car and I notice that he’s dressed for golf but doesn’t have his golf clubs..? I asked out loud, “Tyler, where are your golf clubs?” Briley answers for him and says, “Oh, they are already at the course. Tyler golfs there so much that he has a locker to store them.” I answer with, “Oh wow Tyler, you’re so cool with your own locker.” Now listen, I don’t golf, I don’t know much about golf which is why I completely believed Briley’s comment. The boys drive off and Briley and I go get our nails down. Ironically, as we were sitting in the chairs getting pedicures, I surfaced the conversation about being engaged, mentioning that Lewis isn’t asking until flight school is over which was ANOTHER YEAR AND A HALF.
As Briley and I pampered ourselves, Lewis and Tyler were actually trying to find the best place for Lewis to propose on the beach that would also allow him to set up a dinner for two. Lewis and Tyler asked 3 different places before finding one that offered a parking pass and allowed him to set up the dinner. ‘El Matador Hotel’ was the place he found.
Briley and I met the boys back at our hotel and we walked inside to find them. Tyler was no where to be found and Lewis was at the hotel bar with two, double shots of tequila…? The tequila shot was to calm Lewis’ nerves because he was getting so anxious about proposing. I asked Lewis why he didn’t offer Briley or I and he said that Tyler wanted to cool down from golfing. I asked where Tyler was and Lewis said “Oh, yeah, he ate Chipotle so he’s in the bathroom.” (gross). Tyler was actually hiding because he saw Briley and I walk into the hotel and he had the ring box in his pocket. At this point, it was about 5pm and we had ‘reservations’ at a special place that Tyler found at 6:30.
Lewis and I got ready for the night and I was absolutely starving because Briley and I didn’t stop for lunch and Lewis emphasized to come hungry to dinner. Our hotel was in Destin, FL and the ‘reservations’ were at a restaurant in Fort Walton where Briley is originally from. On a good day, the drive is only 25 minutes but the traffic that day was horrendous. I started to get super hungry and we just so happen to pass a Chik-fil-A. I told Lewis that I wanted to get a gift card for the people that were watching our dog so I suggested that we stop (that was my decoy to get a milkshake). At first, Lewis was adamant about getting there because we were already crunched for time until he got a mysterious text message. He passed Chik-fil-A but then pulled an aggressive U-turn stating that he didn’t want to pick up our dog without some type of gift. We park at Chik-fil-A and Lewis goes to pick up the gift card. When he gets back I asked him to go back and get a milkshake for me…he said ‘no’, I guess he was in a hurry again.
We continue to drive and I started to get hangry, very hangry because AT THIS POINT we were 30 minutes late and I had a bad feeling that we were going to miss our reservation. Lewis promised that we would get there soon and that Briley and Tyler would be there to check in. We drive to a place called El Matador that sits on the beach and I immediately started to freak out. Now, I enjoy tacos, DO NOT GET ME WRONG but we were going to ‘dinner’ on the gulf and I was expecting a place that wasn’t Mexican. Lewis pulls out a parking pass and I question why we needed one. He said, “You need a parking pass to go to this restaurant, I told you that Tyler picked a good place. It has really good reviews” I’m like, “OK THEN, let me just see how good these reviews are. I’m going to check out the menu.” So, I pull out my phone to check the place out. Lewis freaks out and says, “Jalissa, trust Tyler! You’re being ridiculous!” Astonished, and ready to punch Lewis, I put my phone away and drag my feet towards the ‘restaurant’.
I start whining/talking under my breath, “I should have gotten the milk shake.” Lewis says he got a text from Tyler and he told him that they were waiting on the beach with the pager. This is where freak-out #2 comes into play. I tell Lewis, “Really babe, we have to wait on the beach now because we were late to the reservation!?” Lewis starts down the stairs towards the beach and I slowly walked behind him so he felt my depth of my frustration. My hair was blowing everywhere, I had just gotten a pedicure (and manicure), I’m wearing my brand new heels that Lewis got me for my birthday, my stomach was eating itself and now I had to wait on the beach.
I see ahead of me Lewis walking towards this beautifully set table and TWO chairs. Side note: I am a teacher and I am constantly on my kids about not touching things that aren’t theirs. So, I started snapping my fingers at Lewis and spoke in my teacher voice, “Lewis Joshua! Get away from that table, it’s not yours!” Lewis insists that I come near it to “check it out” and I continue to scold him to get away from the table. I continued to walk to him but in far proximity from the table because I didn’t want to get ‘caught’ touching someone’s special meal. Lewis started TOUCHING the dinner placement so I became more curious but still angry. I was distracted because I was fixated on a double date so I KNEW that this table couldn’t be ours.
There was a center piece on the table and Lewis pulled out a box and two people started darting towards us, one was a photographer and the other was a friend of the photographer that was recording the whole thing. I was so confused but then looked over and saw Lewis’ face, a box in his hand and the BIGGEST smile on his face.
There were instant tears and I genuinely believed I was dreaming. I started to sob and he said (which I don’t remember and he had to reiterate it over dinner), “Jalissa, we’ve been through so much together and it has only made us stronger. We are truly blessed for that and I am truly blessed to have you in my life. You are my everything. You are the one I want to spend the rest of my life with. I love you Jalissa Elizabeth Curtis, will you marry me?”
You’ll see in the video that I said “yes” and apologized for being mean. Ps. The ring was hidden in the golf bag and El Matador is not a restaurant. L-O-L, good one Lewis.