Groom Ends Notorious Family Rivalry with Touching Proposal
How We Met – by the groom
I met Rachel where all great fairy tale love stories begin — in the basement of a fraternity house. After many years of searching, a buddy and I decided to swear off college girls until after graduation from Truman State University in Kirksville, Mo.
So, naturally on a fateful night in February 2012, we showed up late to another fraternity’s party across campus with zero expectations.
Much to my surprise, I saw a group of girls on the dance floor, and one blonde in particular caught my eye. Given my pledge earlier that night, I figured I had nothing to lose so I approached the group and started talking to a few of her friends; but my true intentions were to have a chance to dance with her. Finally, I was able to grab her hand. I spun her around a few times, and learned her name was Rachel. I was totally smitten.
All of the sudden, a mutual friend of ours came up to us with a big smile on her face. She ran up and said to me, ”Isn’t she pretty! Do you know who this is?” pointing at the blonde girl. I said, “No, but yes, she’s gorgeous!”
Our mutual friend explained to me that I was dancing and spinning around “Jordan Buchheit’s little sister!” Jordan was a close friend of mine, but I had no idea he even had a little sister! I was afraid this would possibly extinguish my chances with her.
However, it was too late. I knew that I had to see this girl again, so after a little convincing, she gave me her number, and we started dating.
Little did I know that Jordan was the least of our familial worries. We soon discovered that our families owned competing businesses. Though the current generation of business owners were cordial, our grandfathers were not.
Rachel and I quickly realized how much our families truly cared about our happiness when they set aside any deep-seated tension immediately and welcomed us both into each other’s families.
How He Asked – by the bride
Aaron Loida was the boy I was never supposed to fall in love with. Our families owned competing businesses in my family’s hometown of Lawrenceton, Mo., nestled along the banks of the Mississippi River and known for its rolling hills and wineries.
Although the current generation of Loidas and Buchheits are cordial with one another, our grandfathers were anything but; which is why Aaron’s proposal symbolized more than just the joining of two hearts, but also the union of two rivaling families who put aside their differences for our happiness.
It was a summer day in August, and the sky was gray when Aaron and I pulled up to Lawrenceton to celebrate some family birthdays at the Buchheit lake house.
The house is near a place where Aaron’s grandparents grew up. The first time Aaron took me here, he told me a sweet story about a low-water bridge that played a large part in his grandparent’s courtship.
To paraphrase, Aaron’s grandparents lived on opposite sides of a bridge from each other. When they wanted to see one another, Aaron’s grandpa would drive across the bridge to pick up Aaron’s grandma, Beulah, in his car.
However, being a low-water bridge, crossing it often became temperamental when a storm blew in, causing the waters to rise and crossing it to become dangerous. Sometimes, Aaron’s grandpa would have to wait days to cross the bridge, and sometimes he would cross it anyway, even though he shouldn’t have.
Aaron and I have always thought this was a lovely metaphor for a relationship. Sometimes it’s easy to get to each other, and sometimes you have to risk a lot; but regardless, it’s important to never give up.
As we drove toward the lake house, Aaron stopped the car at the low-water bridge. The clouds above us were gray and full and it looked as though rain could pour from the sky at any minute. He led me down a gravel road toward the bridge. When we crossed a bend in the road, I spotted a small bench on the other side of the bridge facing away from us.
As we rounded the corner, I noticed the bench was etched with the words “Buchheit Loida, est. 2016” and covered in beautiful white hydrangeas. (Aaron is a teacher who teaches woodworking and history, and he had made the bench himself.)
Aaron then got on one knee and asked me to be his wife. I earnestly agreed, and then we drove to my parents’ house, greeted on the porch by all our family and friends. His proposal carries a lot of meaning for our families, and it’s a day I will never forget.
Aaron’s grandmother, Beulah, tells it best