I was in survival mode. Just a few more minutes, I told myself; then I could collapse into my bed, melting away into dreams and other worlds and total relaxation. However, the universe had something else planned.
I trudged to my hotel room, tired from five days of travel and people and constant conversations. Since I’ve been working from home for the past two years, I’m not used to being “on” for the full day. When my meetings and demonstrations are complete, I can retreat back to my own head. I can get lost in tasks and thoughts and dreams and goals. Alas, this week was instead full of conversation, smiles, laughter and little personal thought. I’ve become quite the introvert over the past few years, but I digress.
I stood in front of my room for a few seconds, digging around for my key. I had to take my pack off, and search it, until I found my room key. I inserted it into the card slot. But alas, an orange flash appeared instead of that peaceful green light. That green light means welcome, come into your room and lie down. Not this time, I’m afraid. Honestly, this has happened to me far too many times than appropriate. I always let my key card rub up against the other cards (I’m a bad parent), and it often gets deactivated. I knew what I needed to do – return back to the ground floor and ask for a new key.
To my surprise, the front desk staff already knew about my issue. This time, it wasn’t my error! Instead a supposed “incident” had happened in the room above mine, and all my belongings had to be evacuated immediately to prevent destruction. I felt sorry for them, as I had truly unpacked for my week-long stay. I couldn’t stop wondering if they had picked up my cross-stitch hoop and thread. Yes, I’m that nerdy.
Thankfully, the team was incredibly apologetic and put me in a suit upstairs to make up for the incident. Two hotel staff walked with me to my room, there to ensure nothing went missing during their transfer of my items. As we walked through the halls, everything felt somewhat surreal. I was exhausted and now all my stuff almost was destroyed, and for the last night in Baltimore, I had a suite all to myself. Maybe I’d just skip out on the evening’s company-wide festivities and just sleep.
We finally arrived at the front door to my room, and I can’t tell you how excited I was to see that keypad flash green! But when the door was opened, someone else was already in the room!
I knew that person! It was someone I love; someone I had missed tremendously this week; my one-and-only.
He smiled at me, and I yelled out “What are you doing here?” with a tone strange in its bewilderment, shock and exhaustion. As everything started to realign in my head, I looked around and saw candles everywhere. Beautiful jazz sounded in the background, and rose petals rested on the floors and table tops.
My love said something very simple, but I’ll never forget: “I came here to ask you something.”
I responded with a questioning “yeah”, but I had an inkling as to what he may ask.
At this point, he rested on one knee with a beautiful black box in his hand. Inside it sat an emerald-cut, rose-cut, rose gold Alexis Russell diamond ring (my very favorite). He said some of the sweetest words about love and our relationship. I was still in so much shock I could barely register what he was saying to me, but I know I said “yes” when he asked if I’d marry him. Duh!
The yes was shortly followed by a “thank you so much.” I know this seems strange, but I was incredibly thankful. Thankful for the beautiful ring, for his love for me, for asking me, for the incredible effort he put into pulling off this surprise for me, for the man that he is, for wanting to spend the rest of his life with my crazy self, for oh so many things, I was grateful. So I’m glad that I said “thank you”.
After the initial ask, we kissed, and I couldn’t help smiling. I couldn’t believe what had just happened; I even pinched myself to make sure I wasn’t dreaming. We awkwardly stood around the room, kissing each other, looking at each other, laughing nonstop and weirdly pacing. We really didn’t know what to do next. You know, we’ve never been engaged before. We finally came out of our awkward/excited stupor enough to eat some chocolate covered strawberries and call our mothers. We took some selfies next and then messaged all our friends. Finally we made it Facebook official (because you aren’t really engaged until Facebook says you are).
After that, I got ready for my company’s winter party, and we took an Uber to downtown Baltimore. The party was beautiful, the food was amazing, and I can barely remember everything I was so gosh-darn excited. I do remember getting to tell the story over-and-over again, which was amazing. Everyone was so impressed by Chris’ ability to pull this off without dropping any hints.
We left the party and had more chocolate-covered strawberries in bed and looked at wedding dresses on Pinterest.
Honestly, I never thought (and neither did my family) that I’d ever actually be getting married, that I’d ever really have a wedding, but I know why that never came to fruition before. It’s because I hadn’t met a man like Chris, who drives me to be a better person, who makes me feel like I can do anything, who is kind and gentle, but honest and trustworthy. This is the man me and my family had been praying about for so many years. He is the love of my life, and now that I’ve actually found someone who completes me and loves me just the way I am, I’m finally allowing myself to think about a wedding, to daydream about walking down the aisle and plan a beautiful day of celebration.
It hasn’t even been three weeks, and we already have a date, a dress, a location, our wedding party, save-the-dates designed, some decorations purchased, chairs in place, and our guest list ready. Neither of us believe in long engagements, so we set our wedding date for June 18, 2016. No we aren’t pregnant (some people have asked). Yes, we are completely in love. Yes, we don’t want to wait officially start this life together! Yes, I am a very lucky girl to soon call Christopher Davis my husband!