how we met
It was the middle of September. I received a text from a friend of mine asking me where I was, because I had already missed the last 2 pool league nights (Cheering my friends on during their pool league had become my Thursday night hobby since a very painful breakup). I was excited that a new season started, and I couldn’t wait to see the guys! I had so many stories from that summer to share with them. So in the car I went and drove to see them. When I arrived, I walked in and greeted the guys. I noticed that there was a pretty good-looking guy shooting pool. I gave him a good look up and down, and then looked away when he looked up at me. God he had the most amazing eyes! Anyway I ignored him. I was not here for him, I wanted to catch up with the guys. So I sat down and started to catch up. I asked the guys who was shooting pool and they told me it was a friend of Brandon’s and that he is a substitute player on the pool team. So I was enjoying listening to how everyone spent their summer, right in the middle of telling a story to the guys about my summer, and all of a sudden this new guy comes up to the group and says “I want to hear too.” So I said “Pull up a stool kitten, you’re going to learn something today.” He pulled up a stool and listened to the rest of my stories, eager to hear more. Josh sat with our group and laughed and joked with us until his friend Brandon was ready to leave for the night. Shortly after Brandon and Josh left, I remember my friends Bags and Bremer joking about how I just warped the new guy… Well as fate would have it, I didn’t scare Josh with my bold stories, and he showed up the next Thursday for league. We have been inseparable ever since!
how they asked
Our day started out much like many others. Josh didn’t have to work that day, and I took a vacation day from the bank to cover the day shift at the bar that I work at part-time so that a lady could go to Country Fest. Our plan for the day was for Josh to bring the kids down for family lunch (it was summer so they were not in school) before the kids went to a sleep-over. In the middle of making pizza for the kids and Josh I received a text from one of my best friends asking me if Josh and I would like to go to Country Fest. She had already had tickets but received 2 more from her boss so she thought to ask us. Josh and I talked about it and decided that it would be a fun little get-away. I told Josh that I was putting in my full shift and not leaving early. He agreed. So as luck would have it, the lady that had the night shift was running late. I apologized to Josh and told him that I would be home as soon as I was relieved. When I got home it was a little over a half hour later then my typical shift end and Josh was pretty frantic. I felt really bad that we were late because I had to work so I rushed downstairs to change. I put on an old pair of pants figuring that it was going to cool off and not going to lie, I tried on 3 different shirts, got frustrated and decided one that was really loose. Watching Josh pace up back and forth I decided that I was not going to even mess with my hair or make-up. I threw on a cowboy hat and a pair of sunglasses to hide the lack of make-up.
As we were driving Josh’s phone is ringing with one text after another. It was our friend with the tickets. She asked if we had picked up the tickets yet and if we were on our way. We were going as fast as we could – actually a little faster than we should have been. I remember looking over at Josh’s speedometer and saying “Josh it is not worth the speeding ticket. We are already late.” That was when Josh informed me that our friends got their hands on back-stage passes and that is why he was in such a hurry. I was really excited to hear this… But I still didn’t want him to get a speeding ticket! Well we finally got there, but because it was past 7:30 pm we had to park quite away from the gate. We get out of the truck, Josh takes my hand and starts out in something close to a trot. I pulled my hand back and said “Josh I worked on my feet all day, I’m not running.” He said that we had to walk fast because the passes were only good for a little while. So I sucked it up and walked as briskly as I could. The old pants that I threw on had a hole that consumed most of my rear pocket so I asked Josh if he would please put my phone in his pocket. He did. The gate was in sight, and Josh told me that he had never been to Country Fest before. I told him that we had to show our bracelets to the security people, that we can’t just walk in.
We were just feet away from the gate and one of the security guards says “Hey Buddy what do you have there in your pants?” At first I thought the guy was hitting on Josh, and then I thought ‘Oh no… My phone must be on top of his phone and his tin of chew must be on top of all that… Crap he can’t carry in.. And he doesn’t know that because this is his first time!!!’ So I turned to the security guard closest to me and I was explaining the guy that this was Josh’s first time. All of a sudden I hear Josh say “Are we good then” pretty angrily. After hearing that I thought “Oh my gosh we are going to jail.” Josh grabbed my hand and pulled me behind him as he made his way to the stage. I told him that I was sorry and that I should have remembered to tell him that he could not carry in and that I would buy him another tin because it was my fault for not telling him. So we finally get to the gate to see Michelle and Dan waiting for us at the side of the stage. It was so crazy to be so close to the stage. It was like seeing an airplane up close for the first time. The stage manager approached us and took us up the steps of the stage and led us to the side of the stage just feet away from Jerrod Neimann!! The stage manager told us that in a few songs he will signal us to come out on stage and be background dancers. He then asked if we would like a drink and both Josh and I accepted. I’m not sure if Josh even tasted his. He downed his in seconds flat! I just figured that he was trying to shake off the guy from the gate.
I remember grabbing Josh’s hand and putting my head on his shoulder and saying “Look at that sunset… My dad is here.” (My dad passed away 5 years ago so Josh never had a chance to meet him). Josh squeezed my hand and smiled. I can’t even put into words how much joy and gratitude I was feeling. I only wish that the kids could have been there too. So as I am thinking about how amazing this experience is and how am I ever going to thank Michelle and Dan, the stage manager signals for us to come out on stage. Josh squeezes my hand and starts walking forward. I turn back to smile at Michelle and Dan and notice that they are not following us. I tap Josh on the shoulder and say “Josh they are not following us!” I turned around and looked again and they were still not walking on the stage. I turned to tap Josh again on the arm and I see him walking right toward Jerrod Niemann!!
Jerrod starts talking to Josh, I have earplugs in because I didn’t want to get a migraine, so I can’t hear what is being said and then all of a sudden Jarrod asks Josh and I how we were doing shook our hands and said our names. I’m kind-of standing there like a deer in the headlights because I can’t hear what is going on and all of these people are staring at me… with no make-up…and I am wearing my mom jeans… and then all of a sudden Jerrod gives the microphone to Josh, and I am thinking to myself… ‘Josh doesn’t sing…..JOSH DOES NOT SING!!’
Josh holds up the microphone and starts talking to me (remember that I can’t hear anything because of the earplugs) and then all of a sudden he bends down on one knee and pulls out a ring box with the most beautiful ring I have ever seen! I couldn’t breathe!! It was like something right out of a movie! No way could this be happening to me! Josh asked me to marry him, and all I could do is shake my head “yes”. I tried to hold my hand still for Josh, but it was not possible. I was blown away! Not only did I have the most handsome, caring, and courageous man just ask me to spend forever with him, but I also got to meet and be congratulated by Jerrod Neimann too! After Jerrod congratulated us, he invited us to dance our first dance together as an engaged couple right there on stage!
After our dance we thanked Jerrod and exited the stage. I went over to Michelle and she hugged me and congratulated us. Then she told me that she had known the whole time and that she was the mastermind behind it all. Josh was originally going to ask me to marry him at a local bar and told Michelle about it because he thought it would be nice to have a group of friends there when he popped the question. Michelle told me that she joked with Josh and said, “my friend deserves better than a bar proposal.” Michelle went on to tell me that she was thinking about an alternative place for Josh to ask me and then thought about Country Fest. Dan and Michelle had a ‘meet-and-greet’ with Jerrod Niemann earlier that day and Michelle told Jerrod about Josh and me and asked Jerrod how he would feel about Josh popping the question during his set. Jerrod like the idea, so between Michelle, his stage manager, the photographer, the videographer, Josh, and Jerrod Niemann himself they came up with the most amazing fairytale proposal ever! I truly wish that there was a way that I could thank everyone involved and make them feel as amazing as I did!