How We Met
Justin and I were both part of New College at the University of Toronto, where we both attended school for our undergraduate degrees. We didn’t meet, however, until the end of our third year. New College hosted an end of the year formal each year, and in my third year, my friend Julie and I decided we should attend and try to meet new people, since we had not been to any of their previous formals. We signed up and put our names down at an empty table, as we didn’t know anyone else going. When we got to the event, my friend and I sat together at the table we were assigned, and while she was sitting next to the principal’s wife, the seat next to mine was empty. We both laughed.. so much for meeting new people. A little while later, Justin sat in the empty seat next to mine, and introduced himself immediately. He was taking photographs for the evening, so wasn’t in his seat when we had first arrived. We talked and laughed the entire night, and when it time for me to try and catch the train home, I was too nervous to go up to the bar to say bye to him. Julie gave me the push (literally) I needed, though, and I approached him and told him that I had a great night. He asked for my number before I left, and so it all began.
how they asked
Both my champagne birthday and our five year anniversary were coming up in April, and I was very determined to celebrate it by going on vacation. Justin and I decided New York would be a fun little getaway, and so we booked a trip for the end of April. For our first night there, Justin said he had researched a place called Astoria Park close to our hotel that supposedly had a nice view of the Manhattan skyline and he wanted to photograph the sunset at that location. I had no objections of course, as sunsets are my favourite. He told me that he wanted to go out for a nice dinner afterwards because it was our first night in NYC, and so we both dressed up a little and we set off. Justin set up his tripod once he had found a location he liked and got me to stand in front of the camera as a test for the photographs. This happened often when Justin took out the tripod, and so it wasn’t unusual to me at the time. Soon after, he pulled out a small book and handed it to me, saying that this was for our five year anniversary. It was a book with fill in the blank pages that had phrases like: “You deserve the ____ award” that Justin had filled out specifically for me. I had given him the same book that I had filled in for him as part of a gift for our three year anniversary. We read through it together, and he was photographing the whole thing with the timer on his camera. After I finished this book, he handed me a second similar book, but this one was about our relationship. I was smiling the entire time while reading it, and laughing at the funny memories we had together.
When I got to the second last page of the book, it read:
and the final page read:
At this point, I was in complete disbelief and when I looked up from the book, Justin had the biggest smile on his face, talked about how happy I made him, and got down on one knee asking me to marry him. I had tears in my eyes and was still couldn’t comprehend that this was all happening, but I was able to answer yes a million times over! I think I asked him if this was real life at least a dozen times after he put the ring on my finger. I could not believe that this day had come and that I was finally engaged to the love of my life.
Justin handed me his phone, and asked if I’d like to call my parents and tell them the good news. We called my parents and his, as well as my grandparents, and then he took me to a lovely little Italian restaurant for dinner to celebrate this fantastic moment in our relationship. New York will forever hold a piece of my heart because I got to experience one of the best days of my life in this beautiful city.