BABs, can you believe it?! It’s officially been a year since we got engaged. Between wedding fervor, busy summers and the craziness of the holidays, I feel like it’s totally flown by. It has also occurred to me that I haven’t shared the story of how we got engaged!
The whole week leading up to our engagement, I was trying to nail down plans for the weekend, but he was being unusually noncommittal. He’d shrug when I’d ask him what he thought of going out to dinner or seeing a movie. By Friday night I started to get really impatient. He finally told me that we had dinner reservations, and we were staying at a hotel Saturday night. I remember thinking it was rather extravagant for a random weekend in March, but obviously I wasn’t about to complain.
The next afternoon, we packed overnight bags and headed to the hotel. It’s an absolutely gorgeous hotel called the Iron Horse, and he reserved a beautiful corner room. We got ready to go out and called a cab to take us to the restaurant. We were a little early, so we walked around the neighborhood a little, stopping at another restaurant for a drink before dinner.
Let me preface what happened next by telling you that by this point in our relationship, any mention of a house, or a dog or any future-y thing, prompted a slightly snarky, “well, not unless there’s a ring on my finger” from me. Turned out there were quite a few of these future-y things brought up that night over dinner, and it has been brought to my attention that I might’ve been getting a little sassy about not wanting to talk further about this stuff without a ring.
After dinner, he asked if I wanted to go for a walk since the restaurant was along the riverwalk in downtown Milwaukee. It doesn’t get very warm in Wisconsin in March, especially not in the late evening. I remember it being about 35 degrees and windy. So no, I really didn’t want to go for a walk, but he was really pulling out all the stops to be romantic, so I thought I’d suck it up for a little bit.
We do this thing when it’s cold out but still want to hold hands. He’ll take my hand and put it in his jacket pocket to keep it warm. I asked him if we could share his pocket, and he told me “not right now.” I think that’s the moment when I knew something was going on. He would’ve never denied me pocket space.
A little ways down the riverwalk, he stops me and tells me how he can’t picture his life without me, and would I marry him? You know how people sort of talk about getting married before they actually get engaged? That’s what I thought was happening, since we hadn’t really spoken the words officially, so I was like, “Yes, of course!” He then asked me if I pinky swore. And again, I said yes, and went to lock pinkies, and the engagement ring was around his little finger. Turns out the ring had been in his pocket, and that’s why he didn’t want to share pockets while we walked.
First: Adorable. Second: That was super risky on a riverwalk on a cold windy night. That thing could’ve been knocked out of his pinky and be at the bottom of the Milwaukee River right about now.
Once I stopped my uncontrollable giggling, we promptly walked back to the restaurant, eyes permanently locked on each other, and waited for a cab to take us back to the hotel, where we celebrated at the hotel bar for a while.
I think all I’ve ever wanted from a proposal was for it to be a surprise, and for the ring to be something he picked out himself. Both of which came true. It’s still crazy to think that our whole worlds changed that night.