I’ve shared the story with many people but I love telling it so I’ll share it again, here.
I didn’t believe this day was exceptionally different aside from a long drive home I was about to make. In fact I was dreading the day; being in a car by myself for nearly 6 hours is not something I look forward to. We had been in Edmond for two days at Richard’s suggestion. His reasoning behind going was because he wished to see his mom and sister before his summer schedule became hectic. It was also better for me because I’d be an hour and a half nearer to my destination. Richard had been particularly sad about me leaving him for an entire week so he suggested we spend a little time together before I drove away.
We drove to Norman so we could eat lunch together at my favorite restaurant before I left. At this point I wasn’t suspicious, but thinking back, I should have been. He suggested a restaurant that he hates! We decided to find a place to eat on campus because our four-legged child was with us and though there was a patio at the restaurant he would likely be a pest to other patrons. Richard suggested I choose where we eat, so I chose my favorite fountain on campus. It is located right behind the bursar building and though it’s located near a very busy pathway it feels very secluded. It has high walls and is surrounded by trees and other green plants. The fountain is deep and is so nice to walk in during the summer.
After eating and washing our hands (Richard is a stickler for washing greasy hands after every meal, no exceptions) his sister stopped by. — I forgot to mention Erin drove down with Richard because she had planned to make a trip anyway to turn in a form for her med school applications. Though the form excuse was real, her coming along turned out to have been thoroughly planned and not a spur of the moment thing. — Richard asked her to take a few photos of us before I left and she said she happened to have her camera in her backpack. Now, I realize this seems really fishy but it didn’t to me. For weeks Richard has been mentioning the need for us to take new photos to replace his two-year old Facebook profile picture. And as for Erin having a camera in her backpack, she recently moved back home for the summer and I assumed it was still in there from the move. We took a few pictures together and a few with Baxy. Then the surprise happened.
Richard turned to me and said “I wanted to ask you something before you leave,” and as he said this he took a little box out of his pocket. My heart began to beat 100-miles a minute (and it’s doing it now as I relive the moment in my mind). I stared in disbelief at the box in his hand then back at his face. I forgot his sister was there. I forgot our dog had recently been in his arms. I forgot we were in a public place. Then he said some of the sweetest things I’ve ever heard. Unfortunately all the emotions got in the way of me memorizing exactly what they were so here they are paraphrased: “Will you do me the honor of making my life as happy as you’ve made it over the past 6 years?” I couldn’t speak. I had tears in my eyes and they were threatening to take over. We kissed. I said yes. I was dizzy with happiness. This dizziness also lead to me forgetting which hand an engagement ring goes on but he was prepared with the right answer. Once the ring was on and we had kissed and hugged a few more times, I came spinning back to reality. I remembered our Baxisimo had been there and as I looked around for him I saw him sitting by Erin’s feet. He was staring back at me with that puppy smile he has. It seemed even he realized the importance of this moment because rather than demanding the attention be on him, as he usually does, he simply watched calmly from nearby.
So there it is. Our perfect moment. I hope the memory always remains as vivid and bring as much joy as it is now. Enjoy the photos and thanks Erin for taking them!