Yesterday was my birthday and last night was an evening full of surprises, the biggest of which was a Big Question along with a sparkly diamond ring! Yes, Deric proposed, and I said YES. I'm SO EXCITED and also still in shock...I wasn't expecting his question to come last night, but I'm glad it did!
Here's the full story: I knew Deric wanted to celebrate my 27th birthday with me and that he had special plans, but I had no idea what they were. He picked me up around 5:30 and we went to a super-cute and classy German restaurant in downtown Denver called "Cafe Berlin." As we approached the restaurant he said, "This is as close to Germany as I can get you right now." :) It was so great to eat German food, hear German music and speakers, and see photos of Germany...I had flashbacks to my childhood. :)
After dinner we walked a bit and then a horse-drawn carriage pulled up. (He'd made reservations for the carriage). We enjoyed a 30-minutes carriage ride through downtown with a very nice and talkative driver. :) It was so quaint and fun, especially because most of the Christmas lights were still up.
After our ride we started walking back toward the car and, for the first time all evening, Deric started acting a bit nervous as he started sharing some words from his heart. For the first time all evening, I thought, "Oh my gosh, is he going to propose?" We were approaching a statue of a bull when he stopped, turned to face me and kept saying schmoopy stuff. Then he said, "I want to spend the rest of my life with you" and got down on one knee (yes, right there in the snowy sidewalk!). He pulled a ring box out of the inside pocket of his overcoat (which I was wearing because I was so cold) and asked me to marry him. I felt like I was in a dream or watching us on TV or something. I couldn't believe it was actually happening! I giggled and said yes and he said, "I just want to take the bull by the horns"* and I started cracking up. He stood up and we hugged and kissed, then he pulled the ring out of the box and explained why he picked the one he did. ""The two bands become one and the diamond is at the center... So, the diamond represents Christ; His work and grace in each of our lives and His place at the center of our relationship. The two bands represent two individuals blending into one. " My hands were shaking as he placed the beautiful ring on my finger. It fits perfectly, and I LOVE it. :)
*For those of you who don't know, I really like the phrase, "Take the bull by the horns." :)
I was still very much in shock and thinking, "What just happened? Did that really just happen?" when a homeless man came up and asked us for money. Deric talked with him for awhile, which gave me a chance to take some deep breaths and gaze at the rock on my left hand. After the homeless man left, we took a couple pics by the bull, prayed together, and then Deric said, "Let's go to Starbucks...there are some friends there to see us." He'd told our close friends to meet us there for a "birthday celebration." Only one of them (Deric's roommate) knew about the proposal. It was such a blast to be with those close friends and enjoy the moment and excitement. I was so giddy I couldn't even eat my birthday cake! :)
After we all left Starbucks, Deric and I drove back to my apartment and tried to just bask in the moment and soak it all in. We asked each other a lot of questions, brainstormed about the future, spent some more time in prayer, and just enjoyed being together. I still can't believe that I'm engaged to Deric Sneller! This whole relationship has been one surprise after another, and last night was no exception! God is so faithful, so full of surprises, and the Giver of all good gifts. I thank and praise Him for bringing Deric and me together and to this place, and I look forward to the future!
PS: None of the dates, places, or other details are confirmed yet, since we only had an hour or so to brainstorm about them last night. Don't worry, I'll keep you all posted! :)