- 8 months ago
- Wedding: September 2019
Hi bees! I’ve been wanting to share my proposal story here for a while, so here goes! We got engaged October 31. I started writing some of this in a comment in another thread asking about how people felt after getting engaged after waiting, but then realized it would make a better thread on it’s own, as my answer is: a clusterfork of emotions lol! It was incredibly magical, but also very messy, and I wanted to share partially because I think that’s OKAY! I won’t get into every single detail of the actual proposal because it’s already super long, but here goes the story in general (if you’re familiar with Lemony Snicket, you’ll appreciate the details, and if not, they probably won’t make much sense but they did to me haha):
My wonderful fiance and I actually started planning our wedding about two months before the proposal happened. We already had a date in mind and everything, and decided there was really no reason not to get started, so we did! So basically, I definitely knew it was coming. I didn’t understand why it was still taking so long (turns out, he was having a custom ring made, plus planning this insanely elaborate proposal, but at the time I was a little concerned that he maybe had cold feet, despite him confidently putting down a deposit on our venue with me and happily discussing wedding plans, but he told me to trust him and I did :)). Anyways, one morning I wake up to him calling me into the kitchen “babe! come quick!”. I walk into the kitchen and see a note on fire in our sink! I put it out and immediately realize what is happening and I am GIDDY. He’s doing a whole thing based off of one of my favorite childhood book series that I still love as an adult (he later told me he was between ASOUE and Harry Potter, but felt like HP had been done a lot and he wanted to do something different). I know this is finally the day and I’m so excited!! I read the note and it says that our cats have been kidnapped! And sure enough, they are nowhere to be found! The note leads to the fridge where homemade pasta puttanesca and another note are waiting. This note leads to the zoo (and the whole way there my heart is beating so fast and I’m painting my nails in the car so that they look nice lol), to the reptile room, where against one of the exhibits is a postcard from Peru, with another note leading to the library near our home, where the librarian asks me a question in a code from the series, and I have to respond correctly before she hands me a book about leeches (a reference from the books) with another note inside leading home to the fridge. Now in the fridge there is cucumber soup and coconut cake (he had a friend go to our house while we were out and put them there to increase the mysterious factor lol)! This note has a code embedded that I have to solve, and when I do it reveals our next location and I get up to go… but then fiance says “Okay, so we’ll go there tomorrow.” I think he’s kidding at first- we’re supposed to be rescuing the cats! Plus, of course, getting engaged. But he’s serious and I feel GOBSMACKED. Like, seriously? I waited all this time and then it’s finally here and then I get all excited and dressed up and now you’re telling me we’re not even getting engaged today? You know in movies when the action comes to a halt and you hear that record-scratch noise? Literally heard that in my head haha. I felt so dumb and rather hurt somehow, and then he felt really bad because he should have not let me get so excited. I thought that we were going to the next place the next day because he hadn’t finished putting everything together, so I told him that I wish he’d just waited until it was all ready. He then told me that it was always supposed to be this way, and that actually this whole thing was going to be NINE more days. He felt so bad because I was upset and he felt like he messed up the proposal, and I felt like I messed it up by getting upset when he’d put so much thought into it, so I was DEVASTATED that I ruined our proposal. It was a MESS and we were both so sad for an hour or so before we talked it out and then were able to laugh it off haha. He explained that he thought it would be fun to have a little adventure together every day leading up to the grand finale, and that there was more to it than I realized. I agreed that it would be fun, and my attitude about the whole thing turned around quikcly after that haha! So, the next day we went to more locations and solved more clues and ate more delicious themed foods, and that continued on for the 10 whole days he’d planned! The adventures were all wonderful and magical and funny and fun, with a couple of setbacks (he originally planned the whole thing to be 13 days for each of the 13 books, but then a family trip I had planned moved his plans up so he did books 1-3 on day one and moved everything else forward. Unfortunately that turned out to mean a couple of the places we were meant to go on certain days ended up being closed on Sunday or Monday or whatever- but we adapted and it was still a blast and just kind of funny when things got a little messy haha). But also, spanning over such a long time meant a few other complications- for one thing, it was hard to stay in the bliss bubble I was in the first couple of days on the weekend, as we had to deal with “real life” like long work days and budgeting and house chores and such in the middle of all of this. But the daily adventures gave us a wonderful break from all of that, and it was so lovely having that to look forward to each day (plus each day came with a delicious themed meal for dinner, which was one of my favorite parts)! At one point it involved getting a manicure, which was so thoughtful of him! And all of these other lovely little surprises. The other thing is that while I was still so freakin excited about it all and especially to get engaged, the butterflies-in-tummy “omg omg omg it’s happening today!” feeling of the first couple of days settled into a more calm excitement over the next week, as I knew exactly when it was coming. And I also didn’t know what to tell friends and family- like, I wanted to share my excitement, but I also couldn’t announce that we were actually engaged yet, because we weren’t yet haha! I ended up telling my parents and grandparents and closest friends, and it was a lot of fun giving them daily updates on the newest clues and such haha! About halfway through, we’re meant to rescue the cats finally, and follow the clues to a friend’s house where they’ve been kept safe and happy. But on the car ride there, my fiance, trying to play along was like “well they might not even be there, who knows, it might be a red herring?” and at this point I’ve been missing the kitties so much that I start getting upset like “don’t DO THIS to me, the note said I’m getting my babies back” Lol, so I’m in a bit of a mood haha, but luckily the cats are there and we get ot bring them home! Now we’re sent on a new mission- to find the sugar bowl! So the adventure continues…
I’m happy to have my cats home and the engagement day is approaching, and a new wave of excitement is coming over me…. but then two days before it’s meant to happen, my grandfather unexpectedly passes away. It’s the first loss of a very close person I’ve experienced, and I’m heartbroken. My fiance is a great comfort to me and so supportive, and we discuss putting off the engagement for a few weeks because I don’t know if it’s okay to experience something happy when something so sad just happened, and I don’t want to call me grieving family to announce our engagement so soon, I don’t want it to seem like I don’t care. But my family assures me that we should finish what he had planned, so we do.
The day arrives that we’re supposed to get engaged. I work a 10 hr work day beforehand and get the news that my schedule will be changing, resulting in a bit less money each week. So when i get home, fiance and I have to discuss our budget. I’m exhausted, and stressed, and grieving, but I’m still happy to be getting engaged, and we head to the beach, where the last clue leads. We’re not big beach people, but the last book takes place on a tropical island so it’s a perfect location, and as we’re strolling the sand at sunset I’m thinking that it’s actually so beautiful and I’m feeling in the moment. We’re looking for the sugar bowl, and after a while, fiance says “hey, look what I found”, and I turn around and he’s on one knee holding…. another note. I think maybe the note will be the proposal then he’ll have the ring or something, but it turns out to be ANOTHER clue, leading back home where “hurry! the (villain) is trying to kidnap the cats again” and at this point I’m so over it haha. He realizes by my face that while I normally might have found the joke of him being on one knee at that moment funny, I was NOT in the mood so he quickly shifts to another position lol. Keep in mind, he planned all of this before the loss of my grandpa and also it was supposed to be on a weekend originally. I try to play it cool but the whole ride home I’m so annoyed and literally start thinking “okay, if the cats are gone again and this starts all over again, I quit” lol. “If he is seriously putting me through another round of this I won’t marry him” haha (just in the heat of the moment). We get home and tells me to wait in the car while he checks if the coast is clear. He runs up to our house and I’m waiting in the car, and I start worrying if he somehow had friends come over for this or something, and we hadn’t cleaned our living room so I was pretty worried about that haha. Then I look over and see my ring sitting in the drivers seat- it had fallen out of his pocket haha! At this point my stressed self softens and I feel endeared toward him and amused, and I call out the window “hey babe, I think you forgot something!” He races back to the car and is all “uh, pretend you didn’t see that!”, and then runs back to the house. Then he comes and gets me and leads me to the house. I’m still worried there are people in our house, and think that I’m supposed to go in and look for the cats. But on the table on our front porch he’s set up the sugar bowl, surrounded by candles making the shape of an eye (another book reference). I’m still confused if I’m supposed to go in first haha, but he tells me to sit down at the table and check the sugar bowl, and I do. Inside is my gorgeous ring ♥️. I turn, and he’s on one knee, and my heart leaps! But the other feelings that hit me: a) a bit of awkwardness. We’re very affectionate and silly with each other, and show love in many ways, but staring into each other’s eyes while giving a serious speech? Not one of them lol. and b) PANIC. The first thought that popped into my head was “no wait! Give me a minute!” Coming off of my annoyance in the car, my stress and exhaustion from the day, and the complicated feelings of grief over the last few days, I felt like I hadn’t caught up to the moment. It was finally here, and I was missing it. In fact, I didn’t even hear a word he said. So I just said “yes of course” and hugged him, but he realized right away something was wrong and I told him that I panicked and didn’t hear him lol. So he did it again, and then put the ring on my finger ♥️ Unfortunately, I have major anxiety, triggered by an any changes and even (especially) the positive ones. I hadn’t had any regarding marrying fiance leading up to this point as I was (and am) certain of how great we are together. But the proposal suddenly set off anxiety and all these doubts and fears surfaced, not really about him or our compatibility, but of all the “what if”s of marriage in general, and I also put a lot of overthinking into my proposal panic. Luckily, I can talk to my fiance about anything, and he was super receptive and unfazed by my complicated emotions. He supported me through working them out, and I felt loads better after talking to him (as usual).
Eventually life settled down again. In addition to wedding planning, we got back to our regular stride of life and have been working on planning other exciting ventures in our near future that we’re so excited about! The anxiety and doubts went away- instead of obsessing about far off “what if”s, I find myself feeling present with my fiance day to day again, and I love our relationship and our lives together so much and can’t wait to spend the rest of our lives together! Our magical, somewhat messy proposal (which, all in all, was actually spectacular- I focused mainly on the misteps here for the sake of “not all proposals are complete fairytales” haha, but he’d did an incredible job and it mostly went smoothly and was so thoughtful and amazing regardless!) makes a great story. We even shared it with Lemony Snicket himself, who congratulated us personally! And the rest of it- dealing with day to day stresses and serious loss during all of it, working through complicated feelings afterwards- has made us so much stronger together. I couldn’t feel happier or more confident walking into marraige with this man who loves me enough to read all of my favorite books and plan something so special (and non-public, he knows me so well <3), who is by my side with comfort and support during the hardest parts of life, and who makes the best parts more magical than I could imagine. He’s truly my best friend and an incredible teammate, and I love and respect him more than anyone else I’ve ever met! And I get to marry him in six months and one week from today
So that’s our very abbreviated (believe it or not) proposal story. It’s okay if it’s not all perfect movie moments, and even okay if you feel things other than pure blind bliss upon engagement. While I was in my mess of anxiety, I spent too much time on here reading posts talking about “any doubts or feelings other than 100% bliss mean that you should definitely not get married!” and it fueled some of that anxiety/overthinking. I’m so glad I didn’t listen!
Thanks for reading!