Stacy and Phillip

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How We Met

It all started when I just graduated from college at University of Missouri and wanted to scope out the men in the sea of Chicago. I thought it would be easiest and most effective to sign onto a dating app while I was still studying for my nursing boards back in my home city of St. Louis. I matched with a guy name Phil and we hit it off instantly, albeit over text messages through the app (Coffee Meets Bagel, go check it out single ladies!!!). Ironically, Phil’s fraternity brother was a close family friend of ours for many years. Apparently, Phil boldly asked our mutual friend if he should pursue me when I finally moved to Chicago. “Wife Her Up!”, was the response he got, I later found out. Little did I know, someday that might actually happen. Fast forward to me passing my nursing boards and moving to Chicago to start my career in nursing and move closer to my older brothers who live there. On my moving day, Phil asked when he would finally be able to take me on a date. I gave him some round-about, hard to get answer to keep him wanting more…you know, typical 20-year old girl stuff. Nonetheless, that night I went out with my friends while he was out with his. He kept texting me to meet up and asked where I was. To both of our surprise, we were at the exact same bar IN ALL OF CHICAGO mind you. We finally got face to face and introduced ourselves when the plot took a rapid turn and my ex-boyfriend appeared in the corner of my eye, AT THE SAME BAR. This undoubtedly led to the worst impression ever and Phil leaving me behind at the bar with the typical “Good luck, see ya later”. I was so upset that I likely blew it with what I thought might be an incredible guy who I had just spent the last two months getting to know over messages. When I realized the mistake I’d made by giving my ex the time of day at the time, I frantically ran out of the bar trying to find Phil, but nothing, he was gone. Understanding the horrible impression I had made, I reached out to him and offered my apologies and tried to earn myself a second chance. He told me that he was having a BBQ at his place the next day and if I wanted a second attempt, I basically had a shot if I showed up (without the ex-boyfriend this time). I had to take him up on the offer, and I built up the courage to go to his apartment (which looking back on was absolutely terrifying) and spent the day barbecuing and meeting his friends, many of which are now some of my best friends too. That BBQ was really our Day One and the rest is history. Phil simply has the ability to make me better. He thinks unlike anyone I have ever met and still takes my breath away when I look at him. I cannot stop smiling when I am around him. He’s absolutely perfect in every way. I haven’t had a second thought about him since and luckily he gave me that second chance to swoon him after our unusual first encounter.

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how they asked

7/7/2017 – Fast forward almost three years, and Phil and I were at the airport about to board our flight from Chicago to Rochester, NY, Phil’s hometown. We were going to his lake house on Canandaigua Lake, where we were going to be enjoying the weekend with his family as we do every year in the summer. Deep down, I had hoped that this was going to be the weekend that he would propose to me. However, I had talked to my parents, brothers, and sisters just before we left and they all acted like they had no idea where I was going or what I was doing that weekend. Phil knows how important my family is to me, and that I really wanted them to be part of the proposal and our engagement. Based on my family’s reactions, I had convinced myself it was not going to happen. You can imagine how bummed I was. As we’re sitting at the gate at O’Hare, the weather took a turn for the worse and the airport announced a ground stop on all inbound and outbound flights. It looked like we were not going to go that day after all. We were both obviously upset that our “vacation weekend” was in jeopardy, but Phil started to get overly frantic. He hastily left to call his mom away from me acting like he was going to the bathroom. Little did I know he was freaking about his plan to pop the question. I jokingly messed with him about being such a drama queen, which now I feel terrible about. However, I was already sad he was not going to be asking me the question I so badly wanted that weekend. Thankfully, the skies cleared in a matter of an hour and our flight got out. Upon arriving in NY, Phil’s brother and brother’s girlfriend, Evan and Jaclyn, respectively, picked us up at the airport to take us to the lake house when we landed. Evan told us how work was blowing up his phone and that he needed to answer emails. He insisted that Phil drive the 45-minute drive “home”. At some point along the ride, Phil’s dad called us and told us that he was taking a helicopter ride that they got him for Father’s Day to take aerial photographs of their lake house (it’s really beautiful in the summer). His dad suggested that we make a pit-stop at the landing point, so we could see the helicopter come down. At this point, most people would think this was odd or even absurd, but this is the same family that took me to Thailand to ride an elephant bare back and sleep in tree houses in the middle of the rainforest. To me, this was a typical Silverman event, and I truthfully didn’t think anything of it. We finally got to the landing site where we saw Phil’s dad descend from the helicopter and land in an open field. Once he touched down, he ran over to us, said a quick hello, and then mentioned he slipped pilot an extra $100 to let his sons go too. He rushed us and told us that we had to decide quickly who was going. Phil and Evan rock-paper-scissored for which couple got to go first. Phil won, surprise surprise. (I later found out the whole thing was setup). Next thing I know, Phil and I are up in the air looking down at the beautiful lake. I asked Phil where his lake house was from where we were in the sky. He said he had no clue and that we could try and find it. At some point during our ride, he began to say really sweet, insanely adorable things that I basically don’t remember because I was so awe-struck, confused, and overwhelmed. Next thing I know, we fly over his house, where his family had spent hours writing on the lawn in spray paint (20 cans I might add), “STACY, WILL YOU MARRY ME?”. Phil then opened a ring box, that had a homemade twist tie in it. I was overcome with emotion because when I was a little girl, I always told my mom that I only needed a twist tie from the man I loved, not an expensive engagement ring (I feel a bit differently about that now ;)). He told me that he wasn’t well-verse in engagement rings and that we could create my dream ring together because he wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted. I was so caught up in the moment, I didn’t really think much of it at that point. Then, he pointed out the window as we hovered over his house and said, “you have visitors”. Little did I know, he had arranged for my family to come as well and they all, along with his family, stood out on the patio waving to us. As you can imagine, that’s really when the water works started. I took in the scene, as much as I could, and then the helicopter took us back to the landing point, where our families were there to greet us. I wanted to get out of the helicopter, kiss him, and then run to my family, but Phil quickly called me back to properly get on one knee, in old-fashion proposal style. “Do you really think I would only give you a twist tie?! Stacy Anna Lerner, will you marry me?”, he said, while he presented me with the most gorgeous ring I had ever laid eyes on. The rest of the day we celebrated with our families as we jumped from one winery to another in a white stretch limo that he had organized for us. It was literally a dream come true. I am the LUCKIEST!

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