sunrise over the Gulf of Mexico right before (after?) ‘his’ proposal
Ok, so this is not really news, I’ve been engaged since December 2008 or September 2009 depending on what you’re counting from. But knowing I don’t want this to turn into yet another wedding blog, I’ve been avoiding mentioning it.
Well in the last month or so, I’ve knuckled down to planning, and it has quickly taken my to-do list hostage. It’s been growing increasingly difficult to write a blog about a lil bit of everything, and not include the one thing that’s taking up most of my time and mental capacities.
So let me do this properly and start at the beginning…
An Unconventional Proposal
The boy and I fell in love during a holiday season, complete with tearful Christmas Eve separation. So it seemed fitting to get engaged then, and I just generally love Christmas. Oh crap, ok, back up further…
The boy has been proposing to me since about 3 weeks after we first starting hanging out. Since looong before we were in any kind of monogamous relationship. Oddly, my commitment-phobic self was not scared shitless by this, my reaction was closer to "how long can I delay the inevitable?" Not long, apparently.
At one point while talking about engagement and marriage and logistics, I pointed out that I had a perfectly good engagement ring sitting in a jewelry box from my grandparent’s 30th anniversary. I thought it was beautiful and meaningful and it was more than good enough for me. So, cash saved, no excuses from either of us, right?
So here comes the part were I decided one happy Christmas that the next year I was going to give him the ring to give to me. I’m a long-range planner, and I figured a year was plenty of time to chicken out if need be.
Well I didn’t need it, and the year was agonizing. I watched friends get engaged, get married, I secretly read weddingbee. I also hadn’t told anyone what I was planning. For me, who needs a survey of no less than 3 opinions to buy a pair of shoes, there was something oddly freeing about doing this on my own. Until the nerves kicked in about a week out.
It’s funny, I never got why proposing was considered a hard thing to do. I mean, you’re talking about the person you’re closer to than anyone else in the world. How hard can it be to say something to them, right? Wrong!
I swear to god, I was so nervous I went blind. I literally couldn’t see anything. And I had to open all these presents and pretend like I cared. It was excruciating.
I had every right to be nervous, because it didn’t exactly go to plan:
me: so he pulls out the little bag with note card and ring box out of his stocking
and he opens it and is like "are you serious?" all like stone cold serious
and then, "but all i got you was this book"
and im laughing maniacally because i think im dying…but trying to assure him im serious
me: so we’re laughing and kissy and he says he doesnt know what finger it goes on and now i think HE’S kidding. and im like, well it doesnt fit anyway
me: and then i think it was just sort of implied that he should ask me properly later…or maybe i actually said it?
it was all downhill
Not all engagements are easy…
So uh yea, way to backfire.
The next few months were peppered with awkward discussions and analyzing with friends via IM. It was almost like life pre-monogamy…
friend: hand, fair enough, but FINGER?
it’s called a ring finger for a reason
i feel like i’m in a CW show and should be like rolling my eyes and holding a cosmo and saying "men!"
this is my life
friend: i wonder if he’s just been secretively kicking himself like "i’m such an idiot! i should’ve done it then!" because seriously, HELLO! DUH!
me: oh totally…i would put money on that
friend: what most guys agonize over you put right in his lap, literally, wrapped up with a bow
me: all i want is for him to ask me (yet again) seriously, so i can respond seriously
friend: if i were you i probably would’ve started crying and been like forget this! the engagement is off you moron! and ran away
hahah well not really, but i would’ve felt like it
me: yea, i had that moment, but i know what it comes down to, is that i had a plan, didnt tell him the plan, and then expected him to know what to do. which is crap.
friend: well to be fair to you, you set it up pretty damn clearly. he was probably just taken aback and everything in his brain slowed down and he blew the moment without realizing he’d blown the moment until after the fact
me: exactly. so now, i basically have to forward him this IM and hope he acts accordingly
my question is when he said he didn’t know what finger it went on… was he trying to propose then? or was he trying to put it on your finger to seal the deal?
me: probably…and i probably totally blew it, because i said it didnt fit
the only thing i cling to, is that the whole thing is so "us"
After several (months and months) missed opportunities (romantic Valentine’s Day dinner/long weekend!? I didn’t plan that shit because I’m sappy!), a little green box accompanied us on a long weekend to Mexico. I know this because I checked before we left, and quite frankly if it hadn’t moved from where it mocked me on the nightstand I would’ve packed it myself.
Funnily, after checking that he had brought it I managed to promptly forgot all about it for our entire trip. (Thank god, could you imagine if I’d spent the whole time looking out for romantic proposal moments?!) It wasn’t until suddenly someone was acting bizarrely (it doesn’t take that long to pick out a pair of socks) before our last nite’s dinner, that I remembered. And I was suddenly very glad that I had made him do this. Because watching him be nervous was so cute. And I felt wonderfully smug in enjoying his nervousness, having gone through it myself.
That is, until he told me he was nervous to fly the next day. And I fell for it hook, line and sinker. And nothing happened, and I was grumpy, and yet somehow managed to forget all about it again as we got up for sunrise on the beach (something I’d been too lazy for every other day). So yea, totally shocked when he busted it out then. Which was miraculous. And fitting. And oddly perfect.
And now what.
In the time it took for us to get ourselves engaged, I’ve literally watched as entire engagements and weddings took place. I’ve fought against feeling like a turtle in a race of hares. Because I know it’s not a race. Or a contest. That would be a ridiculous.
I’m starting to see the engagement debacle as a sneak preview for the circular reasoning and indecisiveness I should know by now will characterize any large-scale planning process with myself involved…