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How New Boy Became The Boy.

May 3, 2010

I had never had a boyfriend.

Like a page from a Hollywood screenplay, I was a twenty-three year old who had never truly been kissed. Of course, I had kissed boys before. But not in a serious, life-altering way that made the world slow down, making you realize that what was happening had the capacity to be the biggest thing that had ever happened to you.

The truth is, I was twenty-three and I had never had a boyfriend. I wrote about it a year and a half ago. I wrote about how I wasn’t sure I would ever find love. That my biggest fear was never finding someone who could accept my disease. It’s lonely and heartbreaking to wonder if you’ll ever find someone. I know I needn’t find a husband at twenty-three, but couldn’t I find anyone who wanted to take me to the movies?

Two lovely ladies suggested OKCupid. It’s not like other dating sites. First of all, it’s free. Second of all, it’s actually a fun set-up, with quizzes and creative questions that go beyond just the usual personality profile questions, really showing what a person thinks about random situations. Since it was free, I was more casual about checking out people’s profiles and really talking with someone to find out if they would be someone I would want to date. It felt more purposeful.

About a month into using OKCupid, I received a message from “andesite1983.” His name, I found out, was Erik.

What many people might not know (because I never write about him) is that my younger brother’s name is Eric. For some people, it might be enough to convince a person not to pursue a relationship. But Erik’s message to me was so sweet and something I connected with immediately. It seemed silly to stop corresponding based simply on a name.Turns out, that was the best decision I ever made.

Messages on OKCupid led to phone calls. Phone calls led to our first date. Our first date led to our official relationship beginning.

I slowly introduced Erik into my world. I told him about my blog, which he has faithfully read ever since. I slowly introduced my world to Erik. Some of you have met him at support group meetings, dinners or meet-ups. Some of you have just read about him on my blog. A couple of you are even Facebook friends with him!

We have spent time getting to know each other through our many travels and our long-distance relationship provided ample time to work on our conversation skills. He loves traveling as much as me and doesn’t mind when I spontaneously suggest going to Boston or D.C. for the weekend. He sends me flowers for no reason, and sometimes for very good reasons. We love the same movies and the same types of food. We love New York City, and exploring every nook and cranny of the amazing neighborhoods and cultural institutions. We hold the same strong faith in God, yet are open to discussing our doubts and frustrations without fear.

I have always found that it makes sense to discuss and consider the future of a relationship fairly early. I don’t think it makes sense to date someone for months – certainly not years – with the intention of not actually marrying the person. So we discussed very serious topics early on. We discussed how we would raise our children, what we wanted to do with our lives, where we would want to live in the future.

To us, marriage was an eventuality, not a possibility.

To the point that we actually started to look at wedding rings. I am very particular about the style I had always wanted, and I didn’t want to there to be a chance of getting a ring that I would have to wear forever that I didn’t really like. Wedding rings cost thousands of dollars, so why not have a bit of input from the person who is going to be wearing the darn thing. So we looked, casually. We browsed when we were bored at the mall. We looked at rings in magazines and on websites. We even took a trip to Tiffany’s on Fifth Ave, which, while fun and amazing, yielded very little in our price range. It was still worth it for the free bite-sized Tiffany’s cake.

It may disappoint some people to know that it is coming, but for me, the fact I knew it was coming was even more exciting.

I pestered him endlessly about whether or not he had bought the ring. Then the ring was finally purchased, which I’ll admit was an accident in me knowing about it but in reality, even if you purchase a ring, that does not mean you actually have it. Almost all engagement rings are made individually, or at least need to be resized for the woman in question, which can take several weeks. Since I had been part of the purchasing decision, I already knew a ring was coming. I just didn’t know where or when.

Of course, I pestered him endlessly about whether or not it had arrived. Up until last week, Erik lived forty minutes from the city and I assumed would not be able to make it to the jewelers before it closed during the week. But all our weekends were spent together, so I had no idea when – if at all – he had picked anything up.

“Do you have it?” I would ask. “Did you pick up yet? When is it coming? When am I getting it?”

“I’m not telling you anything,” Erik would say.

He is very stubborn like that.

On Saturday afternoon, Erik came by my apartment to pick me up. We were planning on going to Central Park to take some photos. Very romantic. It was a beautiful day out and I was suspecting something might be on its way…

“Do you have it yet?” I asked, as we were getting ready. “You have it, don’t you?” He laughed at me.

“I’m not telling you anything.”

“You do have it don’t you… right?” I persisted. He kept laughing.

Then he turned the tables on me. “Would you really want me to propose to you right here?” he asked.

I looked around the living room of my apartment.

“No… I suppose not.” Even if he did have the ring, I figured he had something special planned for later that day. Maybe a quiet, romantic spot in Central Park. Or maybe after a romantic dinner. Or, you know, eventually. I still didn’t know if he had the ring or not.

After grabbing my sunglasses, I ducked into my room to put away the sunscreen.

When I turned around, Erik was on one knee.

“I love you more than anyone in the world. Will you marry me?”

I was so shocked that he had actually fooled me into thinking he wasn’t going to do it that I started laughing. Because I’m classy like that. Who laughs at their own proposal?

“Yes, of course!”

We hugged for eternity, and kissed, and he slid a gorgeous vintage-style engagement ring on my left ring finger. It was exactly what I wanted.

The ring.

The style of proposal – quiet, intimate, sweet and private. Public proposals make me anxious (what if she says no?) and I knew I wanted it to be where it was just the two of us. I can’t think of a better place than in my living room. Just us.

The man.

Sometimes, even when you are expecting it, it can still be the biggest, bestest surprise in the world.

69 Comments
  1. May 3, 2010 8:27 AM

    Oh Allison, that’s really exciting!😀 Seriously, congrats. Also, top marks for good taste, that is a truly beautiful ring.

  2. May 3, 2010 8:28 AM

    Congrats!

    It’s lovely!🙂

  3. May 3, 2010 8:36 AM

    How exciting! CONGRATULATIONS!! So happy for you both! I can remember all those early posts so clearly and the one where you posted that you had started dating and I was so excited for you. And I think I may have been the first from the DOC to meet him. 😉 So glad you found a “keeper.” Make sure to keep us filled in on all the wedding details!

    Congrats again, girly!
    ~Layne

    PS: Love the ring! Gorgeous!

  4. May 3, 2010 8:37 AM

    Congratulations Allison!!! That is such awesome news!!! Enjoy every bit of this moment🙂

  5. May 3, 2010 8:44 AM

    YAAAAAAAAAAY!!!! Oh congratulations, I’m so so happy for you!! I’m totally with you – I kind of knew about the proposal too since we’d been “looking” at styles of rings “just to see”… it totally adds to the excitement! Can’t wait to share wedding plans with you!🙂

  6. Cynthia permalink
    May 3, 2010 8:48 AM

    Congrats! & cute ring!🙂

  7. tmana permalink
    May 3, 2010 8:53 AM

    Yup, we knew (or suspected) it was coming… and like every romance-novel reader, eagerly turning the pages to see if this one was the page with the fairy-tale wedding and happily-ever-after…

    Felicitations!

  8. May 3, 2010 8:53 AM

    Congrats! I’m so incredibly happy and excited for you!

  9. May 3, 2010 9:07 AM

    Congratulations! Your ring is beautiful🙂 All the best on this new journey, and may you and Erik have a beautiful life together.

    ps. I have been reading your blog for a number of years now (cannot believe it has been years already!), but don’t recall ever posting a comment – so this is me de-lurking.

  10. Bob Williams permalink
    May 3, 2010 9:08 AM

    Congratulations!!!

  11. May 3, 2010 9:32 AM

    Congratulations!!!! Gorgeous ring!

  12. Kassie permalink
    May 3, 2010 9:39 AM

    Congratulations! And kudos to Erik for pulling a surprise out of that scenario!

  13. Colleen permalink
    May 3, 2010 9:40 AM

    Congratulations!!!! Oh I am so happy for you two, Allison! And what a wonderful, sweet, post–it made me cry. You sound so happy with Erik and I couldn’t imagine anything better. Congratulations!

    PS – I knew my proposal was coming too–but it didn’t make it any less exciting~!

  14. May 3, 2010 9:42 AM

    Congrats!! The ring is beautiful🙂

  15. May 3, 2010 9:51 AM

    OMG, that ring is GORGEOUS! Congrats to you both!

  16. May 3, 2010 9:52 AM

    Oh my god! Congratulations love! This is the greatest post !! I have been a skeptic of dating sites but stories like this make me think I should really try it out! True love… I am so happy you have it, you deserve it !

    Best,

    Hannah Katy

  17. Renee permalink
    May 3, 2010 9:56 AM

    Allison:
    I’m thrilled for you both!! – ever since you wrote that “A Keeper” post, I’ve thought this was going to happen….but even more exciting is to look at how your life has BLOSSOMED over the past 2 yrs in so many ways!!
    Renee

  18. May 3, 2010 10:09 AM

    Woo! Congratulations miss! That’s amazing =D

  19. May 3, 2010 10:11 AM

    Woot! What a wonderful post! Many congratulations to you both. I can’t wait to meet him!

  20. May 3, 2010 10:18 AM

    Congrats!There’s absolutely nothing quite like that earth shattering moment…enjoy showing everyone your beautiful ring! (I know I did)

  21. May 3, 2010 10:23 AM

    Wow!! That’s fabulous news! Big congratulations and hugs to you both! Looking forward to toasting the news in two weeks🙂

  22. May 3, 2010 10:25 AM

    Congrats!

  23. May 3, 2010 10:25 AM

    Congratulations, lady! I think Erik is really cool, and I’m glad you found someone who makes you so happy. Your ring is gorgeous!

    Also, Matt told me when he wanted to go looking for rings too. He sent pictures of things he thought I might like, I sent pictures of things I liked. I wasn’t picky–I didn’t have a chance to be, we had no money back then. But he told me the day he went to buy it. In fact, he told me when he picked it up. I had no idea what it actually looked like, just some suggestions and hints. I had no idea when I would actually receive it. I think he may have hid the box in his roommate’s dresser so I wouldn’t go searching for the ring!

    Then he proposed to me on his birthday. It was awesome. They say that you “just know” when you met the one, and honestly, I think it’s true for so many of us.

    All the best to both of you!❤

  24. May 3, 2010 10:31 AM

    I’m so happy for you guys. It’s perfect.🙂 Oh, by the way, your ring looks just like one I want!

  25. May 3, 2010 10:39 AM

    “To us, marriage was an eventuality, not a possibility.”

    I know EXACTLY what you mean. Ahhhhhhhhhhh I’m so excited for you!!! It’s GORGEOUS!!!!

    Congratulations!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  26. May 3, 2010 10:50 AM

    What a beautiful story – and ring, too. Congratulations!

  27. May 3, 2010 10:52 AM

    Since you feel like my long lost sister, I could not be more excited for you! May God bless you both on the amazing adventure that is up ahead. The ring is stunning!!!

  28. Autumn permalink
    May 3, 2010 10:57 AM

    Congratulations on finding your “Keeper”! If he’s anything like my wonderful hubby you two will enjoy a lifetime of laughter. Can’t wait to read about your wedding!

  29. May 3, 2010 11:07 AM

    Congratulations! What a gorgeous, gorgeous ring!! My guy (who I also met on OkCupid, which I think you know already) and I talk about getting married as an eventuality. We’re not looking at rings yet (it’s still early yet)…but I got butterflies reading this wonderful story! Again, congratulations to you both!

  30. May 3, 2010 11:14 AM

    Beautiful! Congratulations!

  31. May 3, 2010 12:11 PM

    Wow that ring is gorgeous!!!!! I mean seriously. And don’t worry; my husband has the same name as my brother, even spelled the same. Although it does lead to some confusion every once in awhile (and one really awkward mis-sent text message) it’s not too big of a deal!

  32. May 3, 2010 12:11 PM

    Wonderful, fabulous, beautiful! So happy for you both!😀

  33. May 3, 2010 12:15 PM

    Yay! Congrats!

  34. Loren permalink
    May 3, 2010 12:22 PM

    Congratulations, Allison! I wish you years and years of wedded bliss. What a beautiful and perfect proposal… and ring!

  35. May 3, 2010 12:31 PM

    Congrats!!! That is soo exciting!!

  36. May 3, 2010 12:34 PM

    Yay! Congratulations!

    This is awesome news and we’re so excited for you! Your news comes at a wonderful time too. We’re in Sonoma right now, as my brother got married yesterday. Tomorrow is one year since Ian asked me that very same question, the evening after we had dinner with you and Erik. And I’ve just been watching “Say Yes to the Dress” based in Kleinfelds in NY, which is making me want to go dress shopping again!

    This is a magical time. Enjoy every second! And the ring is gorgeous! Congratulations again!

  37. Jeff Feuer permalink
    May 3, 2010 12:35 PM

    Congratulations to you both!

  38. May 3, 2010 12:37 PM

    What a fabulous story, Allison! Congrats!

  39. May 3, 2010 12:48 PM

    Oooooh, congratulations!!!!!!

  40. May 3, 2010 1:31 PM

    Wow! Congratulations! And the ring is gorgeous.

    My husband and I picked out my ring together, too. Over four years later, I still love it. I’m so with you on the “eventuality, not a possibility” thing, too.

  41. May 3, 2010 1:42 PM

    yay!! congrats!! I’m soo happy for you! Now maybe i should go check out that website..since i’m 23 and havent had a date in almost a YEAR. ugg. yay for marriage!

  42. May 3, 2010 2:17 PM

    Mazel tov! And if you haven’t set a date yet, tell people you’re thinking of a particular season. It helps narrow it down until you know what the actual date will be. Congrats!

  43. May 3, 2010 2:17 PM

    Congratualtions! I think these kind of proposals are good luck.🙂 My husbands proposal to me was just as simple, and we just celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary on May 1st! More in love everyday for sure!

  44. May 3, 2010 2:59 PM

    You’ve already actually heard me squeal—so here’s my internet version: OMGOMG THAT’S SO EXCITING I’M SO HAPPY FOR YOU!

    Seriously, congrats! And let me know how talking to my Aunt goes.

  45. May 3, 2010 3:56 PM

    congratulations!!! this makes me smile a lot.

    i think you’ve already learned that it’s not so much about the ring, but the man holding the ring…

    i didn’t even get a proper engagement ring, and although i had always dreamed of what i would want, when the moment came, i didn’t even care about the ring.

  46. May 3, 2010 4:02 PM

    Congratulations!!! I’m so happy for you!🙂

  47. May 3, 2010 4:17 PM

    CONGRATULATIONS!!! That is so exciting and so sweet! I also knew that my now-husband was going to pop the question, and I was constantly asking him the same kinds of things!!

    I wish you both a lifetime of happiness!! Congrats again!

  48. May 3, 2010 4:46 PM

    How awesomely exciting!
    Congratulations to both of you!

  49. May 3, 2010 5:33 PM

    Congratulations to you and Eric! Eric – has she set the date yet?

  50. May 3, 2010 6:35 PM

    CONGRATS!!!!

  51. May 3, 2010 6:40 PM

    congratulations allison that is so exciting and your ring is lovely!

  52. May 3, 2010 8:32 PM

    Beautiful ring! Congrats!!! Marriage is a beautiful thing.

  53. May 3, 2010 8:35 PM

    Wow! Congratulations, just don’t become a Bridezilla, OK? (Not that you would, but it’s always good to remind people anyway!)

  54. May 4, 2010 9:28 AM

    Congrats, Allison!! How exciting! Enjoy every second.

  55. May 4, 2010 12:48 PM

    Congratulations to you both. What a great story, perfectly YOU!

  56. May 4, 2010 1:17 PM

    OH wow! Very pretty ring.
    Your story sounds a lot like mine. I pestered my husband for months about engagement and rings and everything.
    I’m so glad you got what you wanted – great fiance, ring and proposal setting. Let the planning begin!!!!

  57. May 4, 2010 1:25 PM

    Ahhhhh this is great! Congratulations! SO SO exciting! And that ring is absolutely GORGEOUS!!!

  58. May 4, 2010 6:39 PM

    Congrats! Love your whole story!

  59. May 4, 2010 7:30 PM

    That’s awesome, belated Congrats Allison!!

  60. May 4, 2010 7:49 PM

    Congrats Allison!! and Eric too!!! Long time reader here (don’t comment too much (sorry) ) So happy for you both!! Enjoy all the excitement of planning your wedding day.

  61. Corri permalink
    May 4, 2010 8:00 PM

    Hooray! I am so happy for you.

  62. May 4, 2010 8:18 PM

    Allison, congratulations!! I’m so happy for you and THE Boy😀😀 And pleeeeeeeeease show off the ring at ACT1 next week!

  63. May 5, 2010 12:05 AM

    Congrats love! This is so exciting!

  64. Rob permalink
    May 5, 2010 9:03 AM

    Congrats!

  65. May 6, 2010 2:07 PM

    Woo-hoo! I’m a few days behind in reading, but was thrilled for both of you when I read this. So exciting!

  66. May 10, 2010 12:09 AM

    Congratulations!!!🙂 That is a beautiful ring by the way. I’m so excited for you two!

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