Michelle and Edwin

How We Met: Edwin and I met when I was 10 years old and he was 8 years old. Our families attended the same church for a few years. But that’s not where our love story began. Fast forward 10 years later, July 2007, we happened to both be in the same place at the same time. I was walking around JCPenny and bumped into him. We hadn’t seen each other in years! We caught up on life. He was home visiting family. He had just graduated from high school and had started his undergraduate at Florida International University that summer. I was finishing up my associate of art degree and continuing with my undergraduate studies at FIU in the spring. We exchanged numbers since we would both be in Miami during the spring semester.

A few days after our chance encounter at the mall he called me to see how I was doing and when I would be making a visit to the FIU campus to check things out before I started in the spring. We spoke a for a little bit and the calls became more frequent. We talked on the phone for a whole month. At that time I didn’t see any possibility of a romantic relationship with him. I just wanted to be friends. He was 2 years younger than me and as far as I was concerned I thought I wanted someone older. However he didn’t agree, he confessed that he liked me and he wanted to be my boyfriend. He thought we would be great together and that age was not an issue. I of course declined, but he insisted to win me over and show me how much edge he had over any other guy. And he did just that.

One day he called me to tell me that he would be going away Labor day weekend for young adult camp for church. He wouldn’t have access to a phone and that he would call me as soon as he got back. I thought it would be cool, I didn’t need to talk to him everyday. But that weekend I noticed that I missed him and that I really did like him. He indeed had shown me his edge. His charm and intelligence won me over. My mom even noticed and asked me if everything was okay. I asked her if it mattered that I was older than a guy I wanted to date. She told me that was ludicrous, that age is nothing but a number. I decided that I would tell him that I liked him and hoped he still felt the same way for me when he returned from the weekend long camp.

As he promised, he called me when he was back in Miami. He told me about the camp and asked how my weekend was. I told him that it was good and then took the chance to tell him that the ball was back in his court as far as taking this friendship to the next level. He asked me if he could call me back. I of course said sure, maybe he needed to think about what I had just said, maybe he felt differently? All I know is that I was nervous and thought maybe it was to late.

He called me back quickly after hanging up with me. He said that he was thrilled that I felt the same way and if I would do the honor of being his girlfriend. September 4, 2007 at 12am our love story began!

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how they asked: Edwin was accepted to a research fellow in Berlin, Germany during his fall semester of graduate school to do independent research. It had always been a dream of ours to explore Europe and now that he was there I took advantage and purchased a ticket to Berlin. I got my cousin Elizabeth to go along with me for the trip. Which was something already planned between her and Edwin considering he had already made plans of proposing to me in Paris and she was going to capture the moment. Of course I had no idea!

We decide that we would travel to a few cities, of course Berlin being one, Paris, London, and Amsterdam. So we set off, November 20, 2014 we took our flight to Berlin and joined Edwin. We were in Berlin for a few days and took off to Paris. Paris was everything I imagined and more. The food, wine, history, and people are unforgettable. It was a dream come true just being in Europe, let alone Paris.

We had just finished visiting the Notre Dame and figuring out what we would do next. Edwin had mentioned that the Pont Des Arts bridge (love bridge) was nearby according to the map, and I of course had that as a definite thing to see while in Paris. I am a hopeless romantic and the idea of putting a lock on this bridge to forever lock your love with the one you love is amazing! How could we not buy a lock and put it on the bridge. So we did just that! We found a street vendor who was selling locks, purchased one, and made our way to the bridge.

As soon as we got to the bridge I quickly started scoping out where we would put our lock. Edwin told me to slow down and take in the moment. He started to say many romantic things, like “Isn’t it amazing to be in the city of love with whom you love!” Of course this was Edwin being his charming self so I didn’t think much of it. He than asked me to play a game with him. Which of course I declined, I mean what kind of game do you play in the middle of a bridge?!

He asked me to sit on a bench with him and pulled out puzzle pieces ( I love puzzles!). I was in shock! I didn’t know what was happening. The puzzle was a picture in a page of a book that I gave him 4 years earlier for Valentines day. The book is called “Reasons why I love you” and you fill in the blanks throughout the whole book. On this particular page the Statement was “One day I hope to share one of these with you, Places:” I filled in “Europe, actually any where in the world.”

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After putting the puzzle together I noticed there was a missing piece. He proceeded to tell me that he loved me and that the last 7 years had been an amazing adventure and he couldn’t wait to spend many more years together making more adventures and memories. He pulled out his phone and from his bible app read from Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, once can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no once to help them up.” He then got up pulled out the missing puzzle piece, which was a picture of the ring, got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife!

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I was so surprised. I has no idea that he had planned to propose to me let alone already had the ring. He always said that we wouldn’t get engaged until after he graduated from grad school this coming May 2015. He had
me fooled, but it was the best surprise ever! After we put our lock on the bridge, prayed, and threw the key into the water.

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Even more of a surprise was the fact that our close family and friends knew about it and wished us congratulations, love, and happiness on a video that Edwin, my two cousins Elizabeth and Vivian, and our brother-in-law Cory created on iMovie to show me after he proposed. It was magical!

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