(If you've made it this far in this blog post, I'll go ahead and apologize for being gushy. You might want to avoid talking to me for the next few months if you aren't a fan of gush. You'll notice the title is a Pride and Prej reference, which is a clear indicator that I'm feeling sentimental. Reader beware.)
A week ago, Brian PROPOSED.
A week ago, BRIAN PROPOSED!!!
That's how it sounds in my own brain, at least, as I get a grip on the new reality of my life in these past seven days. I know now in a heady, cognitive-sort-of-way that I am engaged to Brian Whartnaby, but the heart-feeling-kind-of-understanding hits me in surprising and happy waves.
I've always felt the need to have a small independent streak, feeling slightly proud of myself as I attended the weddings of 20 of my friends and family over the past two years with a very blank left ring finger. It gave me a small sense of accomplishment that I lived my life, followed my path, and made plans on my own. I was not about to be settling down nor was I about to settle. My first year out of college seemed to me like The Year of First Dates, full of nice and well-intentioned guys (plus one or two Shady McShadesters) but full of guys that didn't click. I went out with some new people I've never met before, and even talked to some old friends and boyfriends that mutually wanted to start talking again. Nothing felt right. Nothing felt like it fit. A bunch of really nice guys with no room for me in their lives. Sometimes that was a relief, sometimes that was sad, and sometimes it was just okay. But, then, of course, The Year of First Dates continued when Brian called me up. I had just decided to stop progressing things with another person and Brian called me for a first date two days later. It felt sort of quick, but I thought to myself, "Here we go. No harm in going with a nice guy on a First Date." Well he was more than just nice, and the rest, as I suppose they always say, is history.
Somehow, this kind, smart, thoughtful, talented, sweet, and handsome (I could go on) guy kept asking me to hang out over the past six months until last Sunday when he asked me to marry him. He took me back to the spot right where we first met, at Timothy Christian in the hallway in front of the counselor's office. (You can get that story from me anytime) After he proposed, he had arranged for my whole family to be ready and waiting at his parents' house with his family for a celebratory toast and lunch. When my hands stopped shaking and I got a moment to look around the room, I couldn't help but be overwhelmed with gratefulness for the family I have and the family I'm joining.
Today I caught a glimpse of the ring on my left hand and got a sudden smile on my face. Not because Brian is perfect, or because I am perfect, or because we have a perfect relationship, because he's not, I'm not, and we don't. But as I look forward to this new year that's coming I have to say that my past compulsion to be independent has changed in a small way. I still want to do new things, see new places, and follow new paths, just this time, I want to do all those things along with him. Why? I suppose it's just because he's the best guy I know.
After The Year of First Dates, I'm so glad that he called.