Vanessa and Allan

Image 1 of Vanessa and Allan

How We Met

Back in 2005, when My Space and Instant Messenger were the coolest forms of social media, I go a friend request from a random person I’d never met before. It was late at night in early November when I noticed. At first, I was about to hit the ‘Deny’ button, but something inside me told me to give this guy a shot and find out who he was and how he found me. I accepted the friend request and almost immediately got a private message from him saying that a mutual friend of ours, who happened to be his front door neighbor at the time, told him to add and get to know me. We slowly started chatting through instant messenger and it quickly transitioned to phone conversations. The day we met with some friends, he was the total opposite of me. He was very quiet, shy, and more of a listener. Me on the other hand, I am outgoing, passionate about things, and am always interested in planning for outings or things to do. I guess what they say is true, opposites do attract! But just talking to him and getting to know him, we started really falling for each other. It was so easy and effortless for us. We never fought, we always supported and cared about each others interests. Our friends got along well and we just felt like it was perfect. We’ve been together officially since December 23, 2005. I never wanted to spend my life with anyone else by my side once he walked into my life.

how they asked

On October 6th 2016, Allan and I flew out with two friends and their son for a birthday weekend. I’d recently become SO into traveling and planning fun and adventurous trips, that this just felt like a great opportunity to have a blast with some of the closest people in my life. We planned all the main touristy things and super cool hot spots in town. My biggest (and only request) was to visit the Willis Tower Sky Deck. The group decided it would be best to visit at a later date in our trip. Our first day was full of fun tourist attraction visits and lots of deep dish pizza (Allan’s and my personal favorite). Chicago was better than we’d ever expected. As we headed back to our place, one of our friends asks what time I thought would be the best to visit the Sky Deck. After thinking about it, I thought it would’ve been beautiful to visit during the sunset. Just to get a beautiful view of the city as it peacefully transitions to the nightlife.

Image 2 of Vanessa and Allan

Everyone thought it was perfect and we decided to get up early to complete some more site seeing before sundown. On the morning of October 7th, I woke up feeling so energetic and excited to start a new day of adventuring in a new city that I was slowly falling in love with. I remember getting ready that morning and just feeling extra happy. The day went on with lots and lots of site seeing. We quickly realized that we needed to hurry to the Willis Tower before it got too dark. Allan started to get a little nervous about the time because of some traffic and us not knowing how full it would be once we’d arrive. When we arrived I begged for a quick snap in front of the building sign just because I sensed this was going to be a very interesting elevator ride! Allan is DEATHLY afraid of heights. I, of course, thought he wouldn’t even dare to set foot inside the Sky Box, but it was worth a shot to ask him if he would just for a beautiful picture together. As we rode up the elevator, I knew he was nervous. To my surprise, I asked and he said he would definitely take a picture with me so long as he didn’t linger inside for too long. This lead to me being even more excited about our picture!

Arriving upstairs, we saw it was very packed and quickly made a line. We were all praying we’d be able to make it to the box before sundown. I started to sense that Allan got much more tense the closer we approached the box. Almost as if he was starting to panic a bit about not making it at a time I really wanted and stepping way on that glass box that was 103 floors up from his comfort zone. I was just happy to be there with him and some of our best friends. While waiting in line, my friend handed me her son to carry and play with. I had no idea what was going on behind me as the guys (Allan and our friend CJ) were talking. Once we were up next for our turn inside the Sky Box, Allan turns to me and says “you go ahead first…this has been a big bucket list dream of yours.” Excited, nervous, and in awe, I stepped into the box and smiled for a few quick snapshots. The view was phenomenal. Pictures will never due it justice. Then Allan steps and grabs my hand just looking straight into my eyes. I knew he was nervous about stepping way out of his comfort zone, but he did it because he knew how much I loved these moments that pushed us out of our boundaries together.

We smiled for the photographer and our friend who was snapping pictures from Allan’s iPhone. When I started to walk out for the next group, Allan grabs my hand and asks me to stay for one more minute. I turned to looked at his face and his hands were a bit shaky and he had a grin on his face. His voice sounded different. It sounded nervous but very serious. He started to interlock his fingers with mine and begins to tell me sweet things like how much he loves me and how happy he is just being with me. I knew in that moment this was it. It was the “perfect moment” he’d always been telling me about. The one he’d been waiting for. I started to shake a little, I felt my face begin to heat up from excitement and nervousness, and I was already starting to feel the water works begin. As he started kneeling down, he kept staring straight into my eyes and tells me how he knew I was the one. He then says he wanted to ask me something very important.

Image 3 of Vanessa and Allan

He said he wanted me to make him the happiest man alive for the rest of his life with me by his side. I quickly covered my face because my tears began to roll down. That’s when I heard him say “Vanessa, will you marry me?” I couldn’t control myself. There I was, standing inside the Willis Tower Sky Box with the most breathtaking and warmest sunset views of a gorgeous Chicago and in front of love of my life of over 11 years.

Image 4 of Vanessa and Allan

I couldn’t believe it! How sweet and thoughtful he was to plan such a romantic proposal that was way out of his comfort zone just to make me feel so incredibly special. Through all of my crying I was able to finally mutter the answer ‘yes!’ As we left the Willis Tower with our friends, we decided to celebrate by eating our favorite thing… pizza! That was the greatest trip of my life thus far! I can’t wait to marry my best friend and the love of my life!

Special Thanks

Suzzy Flores
 | Photographer