How We Met
Adam and I both attended Northern Arizona University and I first met Adam while celebrating my best friend Mary’s twenty-first birthday in Las Vegas. Adam’s roommate and best friend Ryan had just started dating Mary. Ryan and Adam grew up playing hockey together and had continued playing together for Northern Arizona University’s club hockey team. Mary was infatuated with Ryan for years and would go cheer him on at their hockey games. I was occasionally dragged along but I could have never predicted that I was cheering on my future husband- to- be. I had always heard of Adam through my girlfriends and once I met him I quickly understood why. He’s incredibly charming, very handsome, very kind and has the best sense of humor with the best laugh. I was immediately drawn to him and I just knew from the start that he was my guy. No one made me laugh as hard and as much as he did, which is my favorite attribute. I am still amazed by the enormous amount of joy that he always brings me.
Quickly after meeting, the story goes as such, Adam is sitting at their dinner table and Mary and Ryan are sitting on the couch watching a movie. Supposedly Adam started sharing, “Rachel’s my favorite.” Mary and Ryan tell me they both quickly look at each other and turned around on the couch to silently stare at him. They instantly called me and told me we were going on a double date. From then on Adam was always by my side. I was now expected to cheer him on at hockey games and I was his two-step dance partner. There was no one else that I would have rather spent that last semester of college with. We were both so grateful to have had each other even if the time was short. Unfortunately, after graduating Adam moved to Pittsburgh to start his new career. I stayed and taught high school science in Flagstaff but I always knew that he would come back to me. And only after a year of being apart he did! He moved back to Arizona and we picked up right where we left off.
We were quick to fall in love. After dating for two months I took a weekend trip down from Flagstaff to stay with him where he lived in Gilbert. I do not recall why but my roommate and I knew he was going to tell me he loved me that night. He took me on a date that included our two favorite things, an outdoor country concert, and food trucks. As we were sitting on the grass listening to the band play, a man came up to us and told us that we seemed like a special couple and he could tell that Adam loved me. Adam without hesitation responded, “Yes, she’s the one.” I now have a wooden sign that Adam made of a white painted outline of the state of Arizona and coordinates written where he told me he loved me for the first time. We both say that it was not a coincidence that this man came up to us that night. And I’ve known since then and receiving that gift, I will forever be cherished.
how they asked
From the start, we have enjoyed many incredible trips together. We both love hiking and camping so naturally, we have started combining these two passions into taking backpacking trips. We celebrated our two year anniversary together doing just that in Joshua Tree and then he surprised me with a trip up to Flagstaff the next week. I thought that if he were to propose somewhere it would be where it all began, Flagstaff.
After hitting all of our favorite spots in Flagstaff he shared that our trip only started with Flagstaff and that we would be continuing on the road bright and early the next morning. As he drove I was supposed to close my eyes are we made turns to our destination. On the way, we drove through Paige, a great spot for kayaking through canyons but that idea quickly vanished as we passed on through.
I was late to close my eyes and spotted a sign for Monument Valley, one of my favorite parks. But the guessing continued. When we passed Zion, I was certain that’s what he had chosen, he has been aching to go to Zion. I couldn’t believe how fun of a guessing game it was and how lucky I was for this man to have chosen a place better than these.
Then came a sign for Canyonlands National Park and he looked over to see if I had seen it as we passed by. By his look, I could tell that this was the surprise! We were headed to Moab! Moab is a very special place to my family and I immediately started crying because how was I so lucky to be with this man next to me?! How was I blessed with a such an incredible best friend that would take me here!
When we got to the park we claimed our spot, starting setting up camp and nervously ate dinner. We went on a few hikes but Adam wanted to save the best for sunset. When we started our sunset hike we were passing quite a few hikers so when we made it to the main attraction, the Mesa Arch, we had it all to ourselves. Having it all to ourselves was nothing short of perfect and meant to be. Adam took my hands and started sharing with me the life he foresaw us leading together.
He bent down on one knee and held me as I cried, “yes!” Now after an incredible proposal like that, you would expect that to have been the finale of the trip. But Adam shared that he had one more early surprise for me. We would be finishing the trip white water rafting down the Colorado River. Our wedding date is set for the same date we first met and we cannot wait to celebrate from “Flagstaff to Forever.”