Joel and I met long before we imagined anything would happen between us. We were coworkers for about two years and although we were both in relationships at the time, we became good friends. We both have a love for traveling, which is what most of our conversations consisted of. Joel spoke with such passion about his travels and all the people he had met. He almost made you feel envious for not being there yourself. He was such a beautiful soul; so happy and positive all the time. He was so full of life! You could never have a bad day if Joel was around. He eventually left the company, but on his last day we had a short conversation about lighthouses. I shared how I had always wanted to visit one and he assured me that one day I would. We said our goodbyes and I was bummed I may never see this person again.
The day of his birthday, August 15, I sent him a simple birthday text. He responded with a lunch offer and I accepted. (We were both single by then) We began to date and took our first trip as a couple to Carmel, CA for Thanksgiving 2014. We loved it so much, we promised to visit every Thanksgiving. This year, due to financial reasons, I didn’t think we could afford to go. Joel being the romantic that he is, booked the trip and surprised me. We got to Carmel Friday night and on Saturday, Joel said he had something very special planned. I didn’t realize how close Santa Cruz was to Carmel, so we visited the Mystery Spot first and then headed to our next location. As we got closer, I spotted a beautiful lighthouse in the distance and immediately began to tear up. I couldn’t believe this wonderful man remembered that conversation we had long ago. As we got closer, he told me to pick the perfect spot for a picture. We asked a stranger to take a quick picture of us and as I turned around, my soulmate was on one knee, with a beautiful suitcase looking box (that I later found out he crafted himself), asking me to marry him. It was the happiest, most perfect day of my life.