How We Met
Shelby and I first met 14 years ago when I was on vacation with my family in California. I was 12 at the time, Shelby was 11 and was about 4 inches taller than me… needless to say we met at the most awkward phase of our lives. My mom had become friends with her mom, Sheryl, through work even though they had sales territories on the opposite ends of the US: New Jersey and Southern California. While on vacation my mom remembered that Sheryl lived nearby and had 2 daughters the same age as my brother and I so she thought it would be fun to meet them. Shelby and I became instant friends. After 8 years of long distance phone calls, trips to see each other whenever we could, and flying across the country for both of our high school proms, we began officially dating in college even though I always knew she was the one. I went to the University of Delaware and she went to UCLA. After college I was able to find a job in LA so that we could have a “normal” relationship where we could drive 15 minutes to be with each other rather than a 6 hour cross country flight. After living in LA together for 2 ½ years I was offered a promotion in Dallas. Even though it meant leaving all of her family and friends, she never thought twice about coming with me to Dallas. And so the proposal planning began…
how they asked
Out of all of the sunny days in October, I happened to pick the weekend of Hurricane Patricia arriving in Dallas to propose… off to a good start! After months of coordinating with family, the photographer, and musician the plan had to change a few times due to the weather. My parent’s flight from Philadelphia was delayed 5 hours but somehow they arrived at their designated location with 20 minutes to spare. Shelby’s sister and parents were coming from San Diego and their flight was delayed 2 hours so they weren’t going to make it in time until they heard that another flight was boarding to Dallas. At that point, they ran to the gate but there was only 1 seat left and the doors were about to close. At the last second 2 military personnel who were on that plane were instructed to stay in San Diego so they deplaned which meant there were 3 seats available. The seats were right next to each other and had they waited for their original flight they would not have arrived until midnight- completely missing all of the surprises. Truly meant to be! In the meantime, I had taken off work and been running around making sure everything else was ready to go.
I coordinated with Shelby’s boss and coworker to get her off of work early that day as she had been staying late and travelling a lot. So the story, as Shelby thought, was that her coworker’s husband had gotten them a room at the Omni Hotel in Downtown Dallas for a “romantic weekend getaway.” They wanted to meet us Friday night for a fun night out on the town so we were to meet them for drinks in their room and then go to dinner downstairs at Texas Spice.
Shelby returned from work early and began getting ready for our night out… things were starting to come together! We arrived at the hotel shortly after and Shelby’s coworker texted us the room number that I told her earlier in the day. We made our way up to the 17th floor to meet them. Then we began walking down what seemed to be the longest hallway that there ever was and we finally came to the end where we arrived at double doors that were bolted open. She went in calling her friend’s name, only to find a photographer, an acoustic guitarist, and rose petals with candles scattered everywhere. I immediately got down on one knee and began proposing to the most incredible person I have ever met and she said yes!
Then the acoustic guitarist began playing our song “I’m Yours” while we had danced and had a full engagement photo-shoot. We popped a bottle of champagne that a friend had once given to us for when Shelby said “Yes!” I then said we should get going down to dinner as we were pretty late for our reservations and the photographer said she would take a few more photos at the restaurant. I walked up to the hostess stand and gave them my name and they walked us over to a private dining room with big sliding wooden doors. They rolled them open to reveal both of our immediate families from both coasts and she could not believe her eyes! Even though she was in complete shock and crying, I could finally breathe a sigh of relief as it all somehow came together! We sat down and began telling her about all of the little “lies” and “secrets” along the way while enjoying a four course dinner that I preselected with a champagne toast and wine pairings at the restaurant Texas Spice. The last surprise was that I had packed a bag for both of us and the hotel suite was ours for the whole weekend while our family stayed at our apartment! What an incredible night and weekend of celebrating with our families! I cannot wait to spend the rest of my life with my best friend!