How We Met
Victoria and I met seven years ago. Our first interaction is a memory our families love to talk about because it truly is funny. I love to joke and was giving Victoria a hard time for her passion for fitness ( in my defense he had not met a woman who loves fitness as she does) and I obviously wasn’t going to stop pestering her. But that was clearly a big mistake because she responded with “you are just jealous that my arms are bigger…”All of that confidence and teenager bravado and the macho man I was came crumbling down at that moment. I was left, quite literally speechless. No words for a rebuttal, no idea of the humbleness that I had just been served. It was at this moment I came to respect and oddly enough seek more of this girl’s acknowledgment and friendship. Our parents quickly became close and we had a game night to get to know each other and welcome them into the area. As a typical teenager it wasn’t my idea of fun so here we are playing games and the best I can do again is team up with my brother to win the game but also pick on her, because it worked so well for me last time. You know when there is this person who you seek for their attention yet they intimidate you and you don’t know how to approach them so you just tease and pester them because at the very least they are giving you some of their attention. Well, I pretty much teased and pestered my way into the friend zone because, by the time I was ready to try and make a move, I was seen as just a friend and probably a little cocky or annoying. A few years pass and I reach out after not having seen her for a while inviting her to catch up. I see this woman, who has grown to be someone very dear to me, that I still can’t quite seem to be comfortable around. Her beauty, strength, forwardness, and personality all intimidate me. What would I have to offer or bring to the table to someone like this? After a few more futile attempts to get to know her and evolve the relationship I am quickly reminded that I am just a friend. A few more years pass and I am reminded of her as I pass through the town we met. I haven’t spoken to her in almost a year, but I reach out anyway.
I figured I had nothing more to lose and only a reconnected friendship to gain. A text message turned into a phone call. A phone call turned into a weekly phone call and then daily. Soon we are on Facetime and she is finally opening up to me. Not keeping me at arm’s length but slowly letting me in, closer and in a more personal trusting friendship. I came to know and love this woman, the one who once intimidated me and whom I didn’t know how to talk to, and we have grown together. Now she is the one I can’t go without. I still crave her attention, a glance, a smile, a conversation. I have come to know the real her, she still makes me nervous and gives me the butterflies she did 7 years ago, but instead of the new girl in town, I have the privilege to call her my fiancé.
How They Asked
I had only ever dreamt of this day. A day where I had the opportunity to get down on one knee and look into the eyes of the woman who I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. I have known Victoria for years, however as we have had the chance to date and have our relationship grow deeper and evolve into a more intimate and personal bond, she has become more than I could have ever imagined. I never knew that when I was praying for a future spouse that she was the one I was asking to be prepared for. As we have had to do long distance over the last 8 months of our relationship it has given me time to reflect on what I am looking for in a future partner as well as given me the certainty that she is the one that I choose to make the memories with and the partner I will continue to prepare myself for and show her all the love I have to offer.
I wanted to prepare this surprise proposal by checking something off her bucket list. As she picked the dates to come to visit me out here in Florida I knew that I was ready to propose, and wanted to do it in the most memorable way. Finding her dream ring was a challenge as well. I got the stone sourced from one location and had it set in another so it was just the way she had been dreaming of. I decided to fulfill her lifelong dream of going out on a sailboat and figured this would be the perfect time to fulfill one dream of hers and starts “Our Dream” together. I told her that I would have a photographer there to capture such a memorable moment of sailing and that we could take some pictures, however, I knew this was the moment I would ask her one very important question.
The search began, not only for the right photographer but also for the perfect sailing experience. I located a captain that offered private sailing experiences for groups of up to 4 people. Perfect! It would be me and my soon-to-be fiancé, the photographer, and the captain. I was elated at the perfect moment I had planned in my mind turning into a reality. I found a lovely photographer and was able to share my plans with her and the captain so everyone involved was in our surprise proposal, all that was left was waiting for the day to get here.
On the morning of the big day and I have to play it calm and collected. I have a hard enough time with surprises, but with something so dear to my heart, it is all I can do to not ruin the surprise. We get to the boat and leave the docks, minutes closer to our moment. I had prepped the photographer by slyly handing her the ring so my fiancé wasn’t to notice me holding it, as well as a security that my shaky hands wouldn’t drop it in the water. The moment that I shared with the photographer when I would ask the question is after she would have us pose and look off into the distance, and then give me a chance to stop by and kneel.
As the photographer has us do different poses just to capture the moment I feel the nervousness in my stomach grow. We turn to face the distance and my mind starts to race; my legs feel weak, my arms shaky, and all that I had prepared to say has left my mind. I hardly feel the photographer tapping my back for me to step back and get into position. I take a few steps back and kneel, taking the ring out of the box. As the photographer has her turn around, she sees me kneeling and a look of shock and emotion overcomes my girlfriend’s face.
I start to get emotional, all words escaping my mind and mouth. What do you say to someone when words never seem to do your love and feelings for the person justice?“You are someone, with who I not only want to spend the good moments wife, but I want to share all the rough mornings and struggles together because you make everything better. You make me happy and I love you. Victoria Elise Tea, will you marry me?” She says yes! The nervousness I had been feeling becomes replaced with elation, bliss, and love.
I slide the ring on her finger and we kiss and embrace one another, pulling her into my chest and my arms around her. She feels like home, bringing me warmth and safety that can’t be compared. The next hour and a half are shared with the captain and photographer, taking more pictures to capture the moment and taking turns learning how to sail.
I am in awe, she was surprised, almost as much as me; not by her answer but for the fact that everything turned out how I planned and imagined. I feel like the luckiest man in the world, not only for the great day but for the great life and many memories I know we will be able to create. This is just one page of our story and I’m eager to add so much more.
– The Groom