Thursday, June 16, 2011

Playing Catch-Up {Part 2}

J and I continued our relationship, even though it was a long-distance thing. I was still going to school two hours south of OSU, but had moved in with my parents to cut down on housing costs, so we were really only one hour apart. We visited each other almost every weekend and had a blast every time. The long-distance thing was rough -- no mistaking that! -- but it made us such good communicators. We talked for at least an hour or more every day,  and we talked about everything: what shoes I wore that day, what he had for lunch, etc. That was the only way we could get to know each other as boyfriend and girlfriend. We knew a little about each other's personal habits (like how I have no volume control in public or how J can't clap on beat at football games) from hanging out as friends at OSU, but now we were having to communicate as bf and gf, long-distance. I always said the distance was hard but it made us such a strong couple, so I'm really thankful for it.

In August 2010, I accepted a teaching job about 3 hours southwest of my parents' house. J was back in Texas (after having graduated from OSU in May), but my job was still 3 hours northwest of him. It was rough for me, but J tried to visit as often as he could, and I spent almost every weekend traveling. J and I had talked about marriage, but didn't realize how quickly it was sneaking up on us. We knew we'd have to get married in the summer time because of my job (at least ONE of us would be free then!), and I wanted to get married outside, so August and July were OUT because of the heat. June was it. I told J I needed at least 6+ months to plan a wedding. After all, I'd never done it before and didn't know what all it involved! So we'd agreed that if we were going to get married during June 2011, then he would propose at least by January 2011. If not, we'd do the long-distance thing for another year. Although the thought of doing the long-distance for another year was KILLER, I was pretty confident that J would propose. He has what he calls "truth tourettes," so he had a hard time keeping everything a secret from me. I knew when he purchased my ring and where it was from. I had a pretty good feeling about when the proposal would happen, although he never came right out and said it, nor would he confirm anything. I actually made a hair appointment for the weekend before OSU's homecoming because I thought J would propose then and I wanted my hair to look good for the pictures! :) I still laugh about that.

While we were friends at OSU, I mentioned to J that one of my favorite spots on campus was the Formal Gardens/Theta Pond area because it's so pretty. There are lots of grassy areas and flowers on campus, but nothing as intricate or calming as those two places (in my opinion, anyway).

During OSU homecoming weekend 2010, my family and I (with J) had just pulled into the parking lot on campus when J gave some lame-o excuse about needing to meet up with a college buddy of his RIGHT THAT SECOND. So we speed-walked to the Formal Gardens, because supposedly that friend was at the Union. When we got the center of the Formal Gardens, J immediately dropped to one knee. It was so sudden that even though I'd expected it, I hadn't expected it RIGHT AT THAT MOMENT. I distinctly remember OSU fans passing us and ragging us about the engagement, and then myself forgetting to look at the ring because I was too busy being surprised. It was a cool moment, though.

I know the date on the picture said it was October 23, but it was actually Friday, October 22, 2010 when he popped the question. He proposed right before we went on the walk-around, and I was so relieved because I had this fear that he was going to propose at the football game the next day and put it -- unromantically -- on the JumboTron for the world to see! lol. We had dinner at The Hideaway, and my family sat at a different table to give us some newly-engaged privacy. We'd been talking about married for so long, but it was very surreal to see the ring shining on my finger whenever I looked down! We were finally getting married!

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