Saturday, December 20, 2008

We're engaged!

Old news is betters than no news, so . . .


Here's how it happened:

Last Saturday, December 13, we were going to go into the city for my birthday (Dec. 16). I had originally wanted to go ice skating at Millenium Park for my "birthday," because one of the first things Olivia and I did together was she taught me how to ice skate.

Well, as it turned out, the weather was awful: 38 degrees with sleet and wind gusts of up to 40 mph. So we had a quick change of plans: we went to a European bookstore near Loyola's watertower campus, and then we took the El to Olivia's surprise birthday gift for me: a splendid Turkish restaurant on Belmont near Halsted and Clark. The food was excellent, and I even got to speak some Turkish with the waiter.

As our meal progressed, Olivia said, "You're awfully quiet. Is there something on your mind?" (Duh!) I pulled out a flyer from an antique store in Richmond's Carytown district which we had visited back in March. I then read to her a journal entry from that day, how that had really turned around our relationship and showed me how wonderful she really is. Then, to commemorate that day, I pulled out an "early Christmas gift" I had purchased from that antique store: an inlaid soapstone jewelry box. However, I set it aside and told her she couldn't open it yet. (Good work, Susan, on the black velveteen gift bag!)

Then I read Olivia another journal entry about two times when she had held out her hand to me, which meant the world to me. The first time it was to encourage, challenge, and coach me; the second was to offer her forgiveness, reconcilation, and acceptance.

After this, I got down on my right knee (well, technically I got up on my knee, since we were sitting on the floor on pillows), opened the jewelry box which contained the engagement ring, and offered her my hand. I told her I wanted to be hers for the rest of my life and then asked her to marry me. With a tone of voice that spoke in glad confidence and resolution, she replied, "Yes, yes, absolutely yes."

I took the ring out of the box and put it on her left ring finger. Not knowing exactly what to do next, we both sort of just stayed there, smiling and squeezing one another's hand. But I could've stayed in that moment forever.

Every day I think now, She's going to be my wife in a matter of months! We'll get to spend every day of the rest of our lives together, and we'll never need to leave each other. It just blows my mind. It's the first thing I think about when I wake up and when I go to bed. I am filled with awe, wonder, and gratitude to God when I think of what a gift she is and of the holy mystery that is marriage.

P.S. For whatever reason, Blogger is not allowing me to upload photos properly right now, and it's doing all kinds of screwy stuff with the line spacing. I'll try to get some photos posted at some time in the new year. In the meantime I'll be traveling all over the U.S. to spend Christmas with family.


Ted M. Gossard said...

Deb and I enjoyed reading this as we're playing Upwords and trying to upload some photos to Kodakgallery....

But a huge congratulations from us both, to both of you! Really wonderful and exciting and a nice way it unfolded for you that day, a memory you'll always have. Blessings on you(plural)!

Litl-Luther said...

Wow! What a moving story to begin your lives together as one! It is obvious how much you love Olivia, Drew, and I'm sure she feels the same way about you. I pray your whole lives together can be filled with the great love you share now--that holding your wife's hand will bring you equally great and increasing contentment for many decades to come.

Warm congratulations from Jaya and I to you both.

God is good to us!

Craver Vii said...

That's so cool! Congratulations! I loved hearing the details as you put them forth here. Blessings to you both. And safe travels, too!