Jenna and Devin
Caleb and I meet in college while we were receiving our undergraduate degrees. I was a north jersey girl with an accident who told it like it was and he was a south-central Pennsylvania boy who always wanted to please everybody- total opposites in some regards! We meet in York after we both failed our Stats I class by less than 1 point (not my finest hour) and had to re-take it during a Thursday night class the next semester. I was quickly drawn to Caleb and noticed how he was everyone’s best friend – he would walk around the class tutoring, everyone!
(I quickly learned he failed the 1st time because he had an 8 am and could not make early classes). Before I knew it I was asking him for help and we were studying every week together to make sure I got through this class the 2nd time with flying colors. By the time the semester ended, we were quickly best friends and were talking and texting all the time throughout the day. He became my ‘go-to person’ for almost everything in the next few months including relationship advice. Throughout the next year, we had several classes together and were always spending time together on campus and at Greek Life events.
I remember realizing that Caleb became my best friend and was the first person I wanted to tell everything to no matter what was going on. The next thing I knew it was spring semester of my senior year and I was giving Caleb advice on who to ask to his fraternity’s spring formal. I didn’t realize it at the time but I was encouraging him to make a move and ask me to spend the weekend with him in Harrisburg for the formal with all of our friends. I quickly said yes not thinking anything about this and only thinking it would be a weekend with all of my good friends to celebrate our time in college quickly coming to an end. Little did I know this weekend would be the turning point for us and where I learned that I was the girl I was giving Caleb advice about for the past few weeks. Caleb quickly realized that this was his ‘now or never moment’ and he had to tell me how he was feeling during this weekend or he never would have the courage to do it. After being very surprised by what he was saying (since I was convinced he was interested in someone else) I realized that I too had the same feelings for the guy that had become my best friend over the past year. As I was getting ready to graduate and move back home, I couldn’t imagine my life without Caleb in it- and it turns out I won’t ever have to!
The day I graduated from York would be the day I ‘officially’ started dating Caleb – and the day I would start to figure out what long-distance dating means. Once I graduated I moved back to north jersey and Caleb stayed in York to finish up his degree with 1 more year left. We learned the importance of texting, phone calls, facetime, e-mails, and ‘online dates’ (which involved watching the same movie at the same time.) This point in our relationship was not without its hardships and tribulations – there were certainly times when I thought I wouldn’t be able to make a relationship work where we were separated by 3 ½ hours and neither of us had any intention of moving back together anytime soon.
Life began to take us in our own directions professionally but we both always remained connected to each other. Caleb moved after college only to get a transfer and have to move back to York 3 years later. I eventually found my way back to PA for a job in 2018 which brought us only 45 minutes apart from each other. The 2 years that we spent being this close allowed us to have a more ‘normal’ relationship which included dinner during the week and being able to see each other as any normal couple would.
My family is very Disney obsessed and have loved it since we were all little kids – I have easily been to Disney World in Florida at least 20 times! This summer was turning into a normal Barone family Disney World vacation with the addition of Caleb joining the fun this time- this was also going to be his first trip to WDW with all of my siblings, parents, and niece (which was her 1st trip also!) Little did I know that Caleb had decided to make this trip even more special by planning to propose on our 1st day in the park and that he had been working with my family to pull off the surprise 4 months before we left for vacation. During our 1st day in the park, it was a very normal day for us in the Magic Kingdom. We were doing our normal theme park rides while taking time to make sure Ryann was experiencing everything for the 1st time and taking it all in. Right before our scheduled sit down lunch, Caleb and I had a FastPass to do one of our favorite rides while the rest of my family was taking Ryann to do the famous Dumbo ride for her 1st time. After we all finished our rides it would be perfect timing to head to lunch and take a break out of the heat and sun.
After Caleb & I finished our ride, I was waiting for my family to meet us in the Tomorrowland section of the park. Once they finally showed up we then began to walk back towards our lunch reservation but were going an entirely different way than I have never gone in my twenty-plus trips to this theme park. Next thing I knew we were stopping at this fountain which was known as Cinderella’s Wishing Well (which I have also never been to in my entire life) to take Ryann’s picture- we were trying to capture all of Ryann’s firsts on this trip, such as her 1st theme park ride and 1st time watching fireworks.
After my mother distracted me by telling me to look into the fountain, I overheard my sister-in-law telling me to look at the sign my niece was holding. The next thing I knew the sign told me that Caleb had a wish to make and I slowly realized that I needed to turn around and would see him down on 1 knee with a gorgeous engagement ring asking me to marry him! The rest of the week was filled with celebrating our engagement and other surprises, including his parents flying down to join us in Florida with my family to celebrate our engagement!
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