Josh and Narmien

How We Met

When I met Josh four years ago, I was a Boston pre-medical student with a recently re-activated Tinder account and raging senioritis. I had met a number of men through Tinder before and was losing faith in the possibility of finding a meaningful relationship through the app. I still remember first seeing Josh’s handsome face, with those striking blue eyes, and swiping right as soon as I read the “talk nerdy to me” on his profile. I messaged him right away, and talk nerdy we did! He had recently moved to Boston for a Harvard/MIT Ph.D. program in medical engineering & medical physics (yes, he’s the smarter half) and this was his very first week using Tinder. Hearing about his passion for the sciences, life, and adventure made me eager to meet Josh. We planned a cafe date a few days after our first conversation.

Marriage Proposal Ideas in Harvard Widener Library

Josh and Narmien's Engagement in Harvard Widener Library

For our first date, we met at the Kenmore station and traveled together to Crema Cafe in Harvard Square. I felt incredibly nervous (this seemed too perfect; what will go wrong?!), yet I was hardly surprised that Josh was the same kind, intelligent, handsome man, I had hoped to meet. After coffee and hot chocolate, we spent some time walking around the Harvard campus, enjoying the fall night. It didn’t take long for me to recognize that there was depth in our conversations – that there were striking similarities in our mindset and passions. We sat on the Widener Library steps for the rest of the evening. I remember feeling calm as I sat there with him, talking about our dreams for a life filled with love and adventure.

Engagement Proposal Ideas in Harvard Widener Library

Where to Propose in Harvard Widener Library

I walked home from the first date feeling confident that I had found my perfect fit. Less than two weeks later, we made our relationship official and simultaneously deleted Tinder for good. I grow more in love with Josh as time goes by. Despite my silliness, unpredictable emotions, and busy med student schedule, he remains the ideal partner, the voice of reason, and my rock. Sometimes I still cannot believe I’m the lucky girl that gets to call him mine.

How They Asked

Josh knows I appreciate things that are traditional and meaningful. He also knew I wanted to be surprised. His first step was to plan a secret drive to Connecticut and have a formal conversation with my parents. I was unaware that this trip happened, so his proposal was not on my radar. My parents were beyond excited to give their blessing, and Josh spent the next month or so orchestrating the perfect proposal. He knew precisely who to turn to for help and advice – my younger sister and closest friend, Merna. On the day he proposed, we had plans to celebrate our 4 year anniversary. I spent the early part of that day with Merna, who was visiting from Connecticut and taking a bus back in the early evening. Per usual, Josh did not reveal our plans for the afternoon (we often surprise each other). The dress code for dinner was formal, so I put on a favorite red dress that he had once bought me and hopped into the Uber to Cambridge with him.

We spent the first half hour on Harvard’s campus, walking around and taking pictures on our phones. I used my small tripod to set up some shots with the beautiful fall background. It felt nostalgic, seeing the Widener Library steps. As we reached the top, Josh told me to walk out along the left ledge while he adjusted the tripod for our next picture. “Babe, what’s this?” I heard behind me. I spun around and saw Josh reach for a small grey box, camouflaged with the stone and tucked in a corner on the ledge. It’s difficult to remember the details of what happened next – I was in complete shock! I remember watching him get down on one knee and feeling the need to get closer to him. So I got down on my knees as well. He said beautiful words about our 4-year journey (which I wish I had recorded to playback) and asked me to be his wife. It was the easiest question I have ever been asked.

I said YES without an ounce of doubt, hesitation, or fear. We stood up and Josh placed the most dazzling ring on my finger. A photographer (Emily), who had been capturing the proposal, approached and introduced herself. We were preparing to take more pictures when Josh told me to turn around. Seeing our family and closest friends emerge from behind the building took my surprise and excitement to a whole new level! I saw Merna, who I thought was on a bus home. My parents had come from Connecticut and Josh’s parents from Florida. I saw our brothers, our best friends, and his uncle’s family – all had traveled into Cambridge to share this moment with us.

I knew early on that Josh was my perfect match. But his proposal made me realize that our love had reached a whole new level over our four years together. It’s surreal to think we sat on that same ledge back in 2015 – that I stared down at the very spot where I would see our family cheering in 2019. I spent four years building dreams of the future with this man by my side. I can hardly believe I’m watching them become reality.

Special Thanks

Emily Boudreau
 | Photographer
Merna Haddad
 | Planning
Varsha Murli
 | Planning