Nick and I had been together almost five years. I would love to tell you that I was really surprised when Nick proposed because I had been waiting ever so patiently and didn’t frequently bring it up wanting to know when it was happening. Welp. Waiting patiently has never been something that I’m good at. I often read the last page to books before I start them, read the summary of the movie I haven’t seen yet, and look up TV shows seasons before I catch up to the latest episode. Honestly, that doesn’t “ruin” any of these things for me. I often become super impatient with the cliffhangers that draw most audiences in and waiting to know drives me nuts. So waiting to get engaged to the man I knew I was going to marry was a challenge.
We frequently talked about getting married as if it were in the near future. We talked about our future kids/dogs/vacations knowing that they were a definite thing that we would experience together. I tried SO HARD not to bring it up, but as spring 2018 came to a close, marking a year since Nick had graduated college, I started to ask. We would be out to dinner or watching a movie together and I would say it out of nowhere: “When are you going to propose?” In a nice playful way of course. I would smile real big and make a face. He would look at me and smile and just say: “soon”. Soon could mean many things for our jam-packed summer. Both our birthdays are in the summer, we always see fireworks on the 4th of July, and we were tossing around the idea of going away for a weekend. I was positive it was going to happen on Nick’s birthday – the first of these events. I sat through all of dinner in anticipation, waiting for him to pop the question. And then he didn’t. The next weekend, we went up to northern Michigan with friends to their cabin. Nick and I rode out to the lake by ourselves on four wheelers one night. I was positive it was going to happen then. It didn’t. The next event of the summer was the 4th of July. In my classic impatient fashion, I asked Nick if he was going to propose on the 4th of July. Nick told me “soon” as usual. I decided then that I was going to stop expecting it at every fun thing that we went to. I had built up each event in my head thinking that a proposal was coming, only to be sad when it didn’t. I didn’t want to go all summer driving myself crazy, I knew that Nick was going to propose, it was just a matter of when.
On the 4th of July, we went to fireworks in the next town over with four of our closest friends. Everyone met at our apartment and drove together to the school where the fireworks were at. We set up a blanket on the field and all hung out waiting for the fireworks to start. At one point, I had grabbed Nick’s camera bag to see if he had bug spray in it. My friend quickly grabbed it from me and told me that she’d look for the bug spray. I didn’t think anything of it. A few minutes into the fireworks, Nick leaned over and put his arm around me and kissed me. Then he told me that I guessed right. I was confused at first and asked him what he meant. He then told me to stand up. Since fireworks were going on and I was confused, I gave him a strange look and told him no. He just smiled and told me to stand up again, and then it dawned on me. I think I must have jumped to my feet as he got up on one knee and pulled out the most gorgeous ring. Between fireworks, he asked me to marry him. He hadn’t even finished the question before I was crying. I squeaked out the best “yes” I could manage between sobs and fell into his arms. I honestly don’t remember any of the rest of the fireworks. Our friends cheered and congratulated us and we spent the rest of the time gushing over what had just happened.
Of course, our friends were all in on it. For someone who had spent so much time expecting a proposal, I was sure oblivious that day. Our friends had managed to stash an entire bottle of champagne in our fridge without me noticing. I hadn’t thought anything of my friend insisting on looking for the bug spray in Nick’s camera bag either. Luckily, Nick had the ring in his pocket already. I was glad that I hadn’t noticed anything though. As much as I hate surprises, I’m glad that I didn’t know that it was happening that day. It was such a fun thing for Nick to plan and I’m glad he pulled it off.
After the fireworks, we went back to our apartment to celebrate with our friends and popped open the bottle of champagne. It was such a great night and such a special memory for both of us. Now the 4th of July will forever be a special day for us to look back and remember.