Nikole and Michael
How We Met
Michael and I moved in together in October 2018 after 8 years of dating. He is my high school sweetheart and we were over the moon. He’s a meteorologist and we moved to Texas from our hometown in Indiana for his job. I couldn’t have been more over the moon! But then everything changed when I started to get sick.
It started out as a cold that never got better. For weeks I just continued to get sicker and sicker. I spent a week in the hospital and had to forfeit my own job because I couldn’t keep up. My mom eventually took time off to fly down and help Michael take care of me. I owe them both so much. But after the holidays in December, it became apparent that I was definitely not getting better. I lost the movement in the right half of my face, all my hearing, and the ability to walk. My parents brought me back to Indiana to get treatment, but I was pretty sure that it was the end for me and I was going to die. But I didn’t. By the end of January 2019, the doctors had finally settled on a diagnosis, Wenger’s Granulomatosis, a horrible autoimmune disease I wouldn’t wish on my worst enemy. But once they figured it out, I began to get better with treatment. I’ve since regained my ability to walk, hearing in my left ear, and control over most of my face again, although I’ve been left with a crooked smile that I’ve become self-conscious about.
How They Asked
Flash-forward to June 2019. I had been doing so much better and had been planning a trip to visit Michael for our 9th anniversary. But the doctors had adjusted my medicine recently and my disease flared. Suddenly I was too sick to travel, and I was heartbroken. Two of my friends told me they felt sad that I couldn’t visit Michael so they wanted to give me a fun girly day downtown. After some prodding, I agreed. They gave me a makeover and did my hair and makeup and made me feel like a princess. Then we went downtown to Monument Circle to look at the little shops and take pictures. I was taking their picture in front of the fountain when someone tapped me on the shoulder. I turned around and it was Michael!!!
I squealed and threw my arms around him. He said if I was too sick to come, see him then he would just have to come to me. And of course, he enlisted the help of my friends to get me out of the house. As Michael got down on one knee, our moms burst out of the Starbucks across the street, followed by a handful of Starbucks customers clapping and cheering for us. Our moms had been so excited about the surprise proposal that they naturally had to tell everyone who would listen, haha. It really was the perfect day.
I still have a long road ahead of me health-wise, but I couldn’t ask for better friends, family, and new fiancé. We will be married in June 2020, on our 10 anniversary in Indianapolis.