I think it’s fitting that I should write about my marriage proposal on Valentine’s Day. Every girl dreams of the day when her boyfriend will pop the question and ask her to marry him. We all envision some romantic setting or situation, the getting down on one knee, the little black box with the ring inside. After all, we have seen proposals on television and in the movies and we certainly have learned how it needs to be done.
I guess my husband wasn’t watching any of those shows or movies, because he didn’t pick up any tips along the road of life about how to propose. However, it makes for a cute little anecdotal story.
We met in June, 1980 and were dating on and off casually for months. One night in December 1981, we were coming home from a typical date. It must have been one or two in the morning. We were stopped at a traffic light near my house when all of a sudden, my husband asks, “Have you ever thought about getting married?” I said of course, all girls think about getting married. He said, “No, I mean you and me.” I said, “Not really, we haven’t spent a lot of time together or know each other well enough to consider marriage.” I also explained that there was a lot about me he didn’t know, like I was impossible to please. He wasn’t going to see that side of me by dating once or twice a week. Of course he was naïve and didn’t believe me. We talked a little more and decided we would start spending more time together and see how things go.
Two months later, on February 21st, 1982 he proposes to me again, very matter of factly, while we were parked outside my house in his car. This time I said yes. I knew all I needed to know about him. He was kind, compassionate, gentle, loving, honest, intelligent and thoughtful man. I knew he would do everything he could to make me happy and more importantly, I knew he would make a wonderful father. My biggest concern was whether he could live with my much stronger personality. He didn't seem to think it was a problem, but what do men know.
He had no ring that night. That was for the best. I got the name of a private jeweler from a friend of mine and we went to see him. I was able to pick out the ring and setting I wanted and I was very happy with it. I wanted a long engagement in order to make sure we both felt right about taking this step. I wanted to make sure this was going to last. I did not want a broken family or to raise my children in a war zone where there was arguing all the time. We set a date for June, 25th, 1983. Plenty of time to plan a wedding and get to know each other better.
My husband may not have proposed in the most romantic way, but I will say that in the 31 years that I have known him, he has never raised his voice to me in anger, never used foul language of any kind, and has never said “no” to anything I have ever asked of him. One day he said to me, “I live to make you and the girls happy.” And he has succeeded at that each and every day of our lives.