Sage and Sang

How We Met

After just going through a rough break up, I swore off men and promised myself I wouldn’t date and at least stay single for a year. A month later I ran into Sang Nguyen, he was back home in Utah for his brother’s wedding. I actually met him a year ago at my friend’s house and we had a connection instantly. I later found out he was in the Air Force and would be deployed to South Korea for two years! I thought I would never see him again and cut my losses. I guess fate had other plans because he came back in my life when I least expected it.

So after Sang was back in Utah, he was planning to have dinner with my friends and asked them if they would bring me along. Even though I only met him once and haven’t seen him for over a year, I had this excited feeling in my gut, something telling me I had to go and needed to let my guard down. We stayed by each other’s side since that dinner, he was in Utah for two weeks and we constantly hung out, I thought it was crazy I was doing this since he was set to live in another country for a year. The two weeks were finally up and the night he left, I took a chance and asked if we could FaceTime. I told him no pressure but just wanted to keep in touch.

Lets fast forward a couple of months and we have been FaceTiming and messaging all day. I decided that if things were still going well, I would visit him in South Korea. I thought it would be a great opportunity since I am also half South Korean and had family there, so I was very comfortable with the area. I purchased my ticket and went to see him, on October 23, 2016, while we sat in a cafe in South Korea, he officially asked me to be his girlfriend!

I left South Korea and went back home to Utah. We still kept going strong with our long-distance relationship, he still had another six months left overseas, I was waiting to find out where he would be stationed next since it would be back in the states. He finally got his orders and would be moving to Honolulu, Hawaii. He visited Utah one more time before his move, he actually surprised me with pearl earrings and necklace since it’s my favorite jewelry to wear, and asked if I would move to Hawaii with him. I have never lived outside of Utah, but I took a chance and hopped on a plane to live with him in paradise.

Wedding Proposal Ideas in Chin Walls on Oahu, Hawaii

How They Asked

We have been living in Hawaii for about three years now. We actually have our new orders from the military and are set to move to North Dakota. I have fallen in love with Hawaii and have been dragging Sang to every beach and activity, I wanted to make as many beautiful memories as possible together since it was something we hardly had when dating long-distance for most of our relationship. Sang casually asked if I would be available for a small photoshoot for his co-worker, he said his co-worker is amateur photography and wanted to build his portfolio. I excitedly agreed because I love taking pictures in Hawaii. Sang asked if I would wear my Hanbok, it is a traditional Korean dress for semi-formal or formal attire during traditional occasions such as celebrations, and ceremonies. I wanted to wear something more comfortable but just agreed since I figured it would be a small session.

Sang decided he wanted to take our pictures at China Walls in Hawaii. It is a stretch of lava-rock ledges & cliffs above the ocean, everyone visits to see the beautiful sunset and waves. The photographer asked for solo photos of me first and had my back turn towards him, I couldn’t wear anything and was wondering why it was so quiet, I turned around and saw Sang on his knee pulling the ring out of his pocket.

I was shocked because this is a man that never plans surprises or can keep secrets, every time he has to plan anything he actually has me do it because he gets too stressed, and this man can’t keep a secret to save his life. I was so surprised and overwhelmed by the happy cheering from surrounding onlookers, I burst into tears and said yes! Sang said he knew how much I loved Hawaii and how sad I was to leave, he wanted to give me one final memory and was planning to purpose to me before we moved. Now I have photos and beautiful memories to share about my surprise proposal in Hawaii.

Sage and Sang's Engagement in Chin Walls on Oahu, Hawaii

Marriage Proposal Ideas in Chin Walls on Oahu, Hawaii

Special Thanks

Joseph Mark Talampas
 | Photographer