Saturday, October 25, 2014

I Said Yes (10 Years Ago)

On this date TEN years ago, after more than 4 years of dating, Justin asked me to marry him! I thought it would be fun to share our engagement story here, just as we wrote it 10 years ago to preserve in our wedding scrapbook. Enjoy our trip down memory lane!

The Proposal: October 25, 2004

Justin Says: 
I knew that surprising Meredith would be my biggest challenge in giving her the perfect proposal she had dreamed about for so long. She is an admitted snoop and very sneaky, and for the most part, we have a set weekly routine. I knew that any deviation from this routine would let her know something was going on. In order to ask her parents for their blessing, one Friday afternoon I had to sneak off from work, drive to Nacogdoches, and then travel back before she noticed that I was missing. Luckily I had enlisted the help of Meredith's best friend, Abby, to keep her occupied until I could get back. I pulled it off without a hitch. During our time together, Meredith and I have embraced the traditions that make Texas A&M such a wonderfully unique place. When considering how I would propose to her, I felt the most appropriate place was under a massive live oak located on the campus of Texas A&M. Thought to have been planted in 1898 and known by Aggies as the Century Tree, it is and has always been a major fixture on campus. As the legend goes, if two lovers walk under the tree together, it is a sign that they will eventually marry. Moreover, if a man proposes to the woman he loves under the Century Tree, it is a sign that their marriage will last forever. On the night of the proposal Meredith had a meeting on campus, and I was supposed to meet her at her house afterwards. I knew this was the perfect occasion to catch her totally by surprise. Again I enlisted the help of Abby, along with their friend Emily to do whatever was necessary to get Meredith to the Century Tree without expecting anything. When she arrived, I was waiting for her with a dozen roses. I asked her to sit beside me on the bench at the base of the tree. I told her how much I love her and how I am looking forward to making the next step in our lives together. I got down on one knee, asked her to marry me, and she enthusiastically said yes!

Meredith Says:
I knew the proposal was coming because after four years of dating, we knew marriage was our next step. In fact, we already had a wedding date set! He had just gotten a full-time job following his graduation from Texas A&M a few months earlier and so finally actually had the means to buy the ring. So I was on high alert thinking it could be any time. On a random Monday night, I had a meeting on campus, and Justin and I had planned to meet at my house afterwards. However, when I got out of my meeting, I had several frantic messages on my cell phone from my friends, Abby and Emily, saying that Emily was having "boy problems" and that she wanted to meet with Abby and I when I got out of my meeting. When they met me outside the library, Emily looked devastated. She launched into this terrible, incredibly convincing story about her boyfriend troubles. We talked for a few minutes until I made the suggestion to go get ice cream to cheer her up which they thought was a great idea. Before we started walking towards where Abby had supposedly parked her car, I told them I would need to call Justin and let him know that I wouldn't be home right away. I called him and he sounded perfect normal. As Abby, Emily and I were walking, they got me to talk about Justin, and they made the comment that they were both just going to live vicariously through me since I had such a great guy. As we rounded the corner in front of the Academic Building and began approaching the Century Tree, Emily and Abby began to tell me that we weren't going to get ice cream, and that none of Emily's boyfriend problems had actually happened. I was totally confused. They went on to say with huge smiles on their faces that Justin was a great guy, and that they were so excited for me because Justin and I were going to be very happy together. I was still confused. Then Emily said, "and he's right over there waiting for you" as she pointed towards the Century Tree. At last I understood! I walked nervously toward the tree where I could finally see him waiting for me. He looked so handsome and I was just a tiny bit annoyed that I looked like such a slob because I of course didn't know that this was happening tonight! Once I got up to him, he sat me down on the bench under the tree, and told me some really beautiful things that I don't really remember. Then he got down on one knee, pulled out the most beautiful ring, and asked me to marry him. I said yes about a dozen times!





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