Brad and I got engaged last Christmas and I have been anxiously awaiting sharing our story, but thought there was no better time than Christmas time! Before I get into all the good stuff, let me give you a little bit of the back story.
Brad and I met on the 4th of July in 2015. He was totally uninterested and that may even be an understatement. But I finally won him over with my awkward Facebook stalking by October 30th and we went on our first date. disclaimer: he thought I talked too much and was too young…so yet again, uninterested. For some reason, we kept dating and hanging out or whatever. After about a month or so things started getting a little more serious. I was really close to his family before we met, so people we both cared about were involved, we both wanted our next relationship to be marriage and not waste our time, so we were extremely cautious when it came to our relationship. Because of that, I remember the exact moment I knew I was going to marry Brad. I actually made a note in my phone on December 10th (I believe) saying “I’m going to marry this man.” We had spent the day doing life together and I realized I didn’t ever want to do life without Brad. That’s honestly what sealed the deal for me, I couldn’t picture my life without Brad in it.
The reason why that is significant is because I had been in a relationship for 5 years prior to Brad. So, that was really quick for me. What’s even more crazy is that Brad was on the same page. We didn’t really know what was next because it kind of took us both by surprise. So naturally, we started planning ahead. This was important for us because we were long distance throughout our whole relationship which meant the timeline aspect was tricky for us. We narrowed it down to either July 2017, when we actually got married, or December 2017, which would be now (as much as I wanted a winter wedding, I’m so glad I didn’t have to wait until now!) Then in May of 2016 we started looking and found my ring! He didn’t buy it with me there, he had me pick a few favorites and he actually chose which one later on down the line. Luckily for me, we both agreed on the same favorite! Naturally, with knowing the wedding date timeframe and looking at rings, the waiting game began over a year out and my patience got tested on a daily basis.
I think this is important to note considering that so often we neglect the season we’re in, not just when it comes to getting engaged or married, because we’re too busy worrying or chasing the next one. I struggled with this really bad after May 2016. It was really hard for me. I would get overdressed every single time we hungout, I would cry constantly thinking he didn’t want to marry me anymore or that he felt trapped, basically I was just a mess. Especially around October (our anniversary) to December (my favorite time of the year AND most popular proposal time).
Fast forward to December 16th, we got super dressed up and went to the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. I just knew he would propose. I anticipated it the whole entire night and it never came. I was an emotional wreck the whole car ride home. I finally got the courage to call Brad. He reassured me that he had asked my dad for my hand in marriage literally two nights before. While it gave me peace, the fear that I wasn’t good enough, he didn’t want me, or that I had failed as a potential spouse continued to overtake my mind.
The following week, Brad carried my ring around in his pocket every time he was with me. Brad’s type of romance isn’t some big planned thing, it’s all about the moment and what he feels in that moment. We celebrated Christmas Eve with his family and I remember opening up a gift of Nike sneakers and was so let down. I could not understand what was going on. What had I done wrong? What was taking so long? Am I stupid for thinking this would actually happen?
The next morning I was talking with my mom. Trace, my cousin, had informed her that Brad told him the ring wasn’t ready last Saturday. So, I immediately assumed it still wasn’t ready. I immediately assumed it would happen on either New Years Eve or my birthday. So, the thought never even crossed my mind on Christmas Day. Not once. I was finally able to just enjoy time with my family, Brad, and not worry. I hadn’t washed my hair in like 4 days, like I really didn’t think about it or prepare for it. I did still have my nails done from the past weekend (thank goodness!)
We went to a restaurant for dinner and he kept going to the bathroom, but that’s normal for Brad. So, I didn’t think anything of it. Little did I know the ring was in his sock and he was checking to see if it was still there! Who does that?! So, beforehand he had been chatting with my aunt and cousin saying this could possibly be the night. We get back to the hotel my family was staying at and we took a family picture in front of this giant Christmas tree. Then Brad and I took a picture together. During my smile and cute posing for the picture, Brad was anticipating the biggest decision of his life. Seconds later, he starts reaching in his sock pretending he had to get something. And I kid you not..I ran away. I literally ran away from him, crying, and kept saying “what are you doing?” over and over. *Brad had also fake proposed to me mulitple times throughout the past year, so I truly didn’t believe it was actually happening. But it was! He recited a poem he had written that ended with “will you be my wifey?” I’ll never forget it. I honestly don’t even know if I said yes or no, I just stuck out my hand.
He cried. I cried. We even made strangers in the hotel cry. My family screamed, especially my mom. Everyone was just taken back that it finally happened. It had been something everyone knew was coming but wondered if it ever really would, especially me. I’ll never forget the feeling I felt in that moment. Chosen. Wanted. Loved. Good enough. Peace. Excitement. Pure joy. We celebrated by watching the video my aunt recorded, which has a weirdly high amount of views on YouTube, I’ll see if I can find it. Here it is! We also got in the hot tub at the hotel. The funny part is that neither of us had swimsuits, so we both wore my cousins shorts and t-shirts. It was hilarious and so not flattering or glamourous. It was such a fun memory.
I share all of this to remind you that God’s timing is perfect and well worth the wait. Patience is hard, especially when you’re anticipating a certain season, but hold tight to the now. It’ll only be there for the time being and then it’s gone. Cherish your present moments and try not to be a season-chaser. You’ll never be happy that way and you’ll fall victim to the comparison game easier with this mindset. Especially approaching the holidays, I hope our story can offer you some peace of mind and if not, I hope you are able to gain some insight into why the timing you’re facing is what it is.
“I am sure that God keeps no man waiting unless He sees that it is good for him to wait.”
// C.S. Lewis