Tulsi and Kishan

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How We Met

(Written from Tulsi’s perspective):

Kishan and I met during our second year in college. Kishan had just transferred from another college and was eager to be back in his hometown, Richmond, whereas I, the California girl, was finally becoming more comfortable in my new home away from home. I had grown up very fond of the vibrant Indian culture and was eager to join our college Garba/Raas team. Kishan and I first met at this time, and even though we had a lot of mutual friends through this dance team, we were both more acquaintances than friends. In our fourth and final year of college, we were both the only seniors on our team, and thus, we often coordinated hanging out at senior year events, which allowed us to get to know each other better and become better friends.

After we graduated, a group of seven of our friends decided to go on a summer trip, and so we all took a road trip and headed to Myrtle Beach. We were all completely innocent, at different points in our lives and indifferent relationship stages (dating, complicated, single), but we were all excited to spend quality time together. Kishan and I continued to talk after this trip that summer, almost every day, sending each other literally paragraphs via text. As I got to know him, I was intrigued that we could continue to have conversations without me ever getting bored and he fit every one of my checkboxes. Too good to be true? However, this whole summer, Kishan and I were on opposite coasts as I spent the summer back home in California.

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It so happened to be that later that summer, Kishan was visiting some family in southern California, about one hour away from where I lived. We decided to meet up, but for some reason, I was so nervous! I had spent all summer building up this idea of my connection with Kishan over text, but would it live up to it in person? Well, that first encounter was… awkward to say the least. There was no chemistry and we both were so uncomfortable. It was all in my head, I told myself.

I decided I had to stop texting him so that I wouldn’t lead him on. I tried to for the rest of the summer, but for some reason, I was so drawn to our conversations, I couldn’t stop. I went back to Richmond, Virginia at the end of the summer as I was getting ready to start medical school there, and Kishan was in Richmond packing for the last few weeks of summer preparing for his move to DC for his new big kid job. We were both at a point in our lives where we were starting a new phase and moving on to the next step, and it would have been so easy to just end things here.

I think the part that was hardest for me was overlooking the fact that Kishan was no longer my friend, but something more. It’s a switch that’s hard just instantly to flip. But Kishan persisted, he was willing to put in the work knowing that we would be a semi-long distance (about 2 hours of a drive away) and that I would be starting one of the toughest phases of my life.

And, well, the rest is history… The next five and a half years were filled with so many memories, travel, and celebrating milestones. There was only one step left…

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How They Asked

I woke up Saturday, March 5th, completely clueless as to what the day was to hold. I was under the impression that I had plans in the afternoon to hang out with some residency friends and then meet up with Kishan that evening for something he had planned. Kishan has always been into surprises and planning dates without telling me too much information, so this wasn’t new for him. Also, I had literally asked him if it would be okay to wear jeans and he raised no concerns so, there were really no red flags.

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I was so clueless that I spent the entire morning taking my sweet time, and even went shopping despite me running late to “meet up with my friends.” I eventually quickly rushed home, changed, and went to my friend’s place where we were going to hang out before Ubering to this “restaurant.” The entire Uber ride, I would not stop venting about how Kishan had not yet proposed. Silly me.

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We arrive at Watergate Hotel, but I was told the restaurant was in the hotel so no surprises. As I enter the lobby, I see an easel at the front and think “oh, must be someone’s event going on.” I then see a red envelope with my name on it and realize the photo on the easel is a photo of me and Kishan. WHAT? I literally could not believe my eyes. In the envelope was a hotel key. At this point, I knew exactly what was going on but still could not process my emotions. I was led up to a hotel room that was beautifully decorated with rose petals and on the bed was THE red dress… (I had picked this out months ago for me to change into for pics with friends and family after the proposal). And then there was another surprise – my sister had come in from California and was in the room right before me! *Cue the tears* – and so many more to come.

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I quickly got ready and was then given the final red envelope, which was a sweet letter from Kishan telling me to meet him on the rooftop. Up we go to the rooftop, and there, I was greeted by Kishan and the most beautiful, extra, and elaborate setup. We walked down the aisle, reminiscing about our journey together. At the end of the aisle, he knelt down on one knee and asked me to marry him. I, of course, said yes. And then, there were sparklers – YES, SPARKLERS. What a man. I turn around and there I see my entire family who had come in from California along with some of my closest friends who had come in from near and far. So. many. emotions.

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Well then, I had a little surprise for him too. So back story – one week prior to the proposal, I had an idea that I also wanted to propose and surprise Kishan, ~whenever~ that may be. I ordered a ring, decided to choreograph a Bollywood dance, and the NIGHT PRIOR TO THE PROPOSAL, I sent out a text to my sisters and a few friends who I knew would be at the proposal. I had no idea the proposal was the next day. I asked them to learn the choreo and told them we would do it all together whenever Kishan proposed.

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Crazy, right?! Well, they made it happen. The sweetest souls – they learned the whole dance with less than a 24-hour notice. And then I proposed! Kishan definitely did not expect that, but it was so fun seeing his reaction and being able to surprise him, too.

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We concluded the night with dinner with our families and a huge surprise proposal party that Kishan threw with so many of our closest friends who came in from near or far. Seriously so touching and such a sweet and sentimental way to end the night.

Ahhhh, what a dream proposal from my dream man.

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