Beth and Jeremiah | The {Boston} Girl Next Door

How we met (from Jeremiah): Many people would assume that growing up in Boston in a neighborhood as big as Dorchester, that the likelihood of ending up with the girl next door would be incredibly small. Not for me. I was probably 14 years old when I first saw Beth. Before a baseball game one day that summer, my friends and I stopped in at a local restaurant for lunch and there she was – back and forth between tables, chatting with customers, smiling and laughing. I told my friends that she was the prettiest girl I’d ever seen in real life.

Over the next few years, from living a couple of streets over from each other and having a few mutual friends, we became acquaintances. Even though we didn’t really get to know each other that well during that time, I never forgot that I wanted to. But time goes on and life happens. High School was over. College came and went. And after a few serious relationships, I was dating quite a bit. I met a lot of great people and had a lot of fun, but had no real interest in pursuing anything too serious. I had heard through the grapevine that after a very long relationship, Beth was single again.

I waited a few months before I asked her out, figuring she would probably need some time before she jumped into the dating scene. It was coming up on summertime and I asked her for her phone number. I texted her immediately after she gave it to me, making a joke that I wanted to ensure that she didn’t give me a fake one, but in actuality, letting her know I was serious about wanting to take her out.

It was a Monday night and I picked her up and took her to get a drink down by the marina. What I thought would be a typical first date turned out to be the best five hour conversation I had ever had. The beautiful girl that I first laid eyes on in my teenage years had so much more to her than I could have ever imagined. She was hysterically funny and incredibly intelligent.  She was compassionate, confident and above all else, interesting. She saw things in a different way. She was opinionated but emotional, strong but sensitive. She knew who she was and she owned it. I never met anyone like her and I knew that I absolutely wanted to spend more time with her. We went out the next night and again the night after that. I got to see her with her friends and see her with my friends and knew that Beth was different. I was hooked.

The Proposal (from Beth): Jeremiah and I had been dating for a little over two years and living together for one. As best friends do, he is the person who knows me the best. He knows how to talk me off a ledge, how to handle my quirks and how to make me laugh. He also knows that when I’m moody, cleaning for me is a stress reliever and he usually makes his presence scarce in those occurrences. Smart man! So God love the poor guy when he came home from work last May the Friday before Memorial Day weekend and the place reeked of Pine-Sol and Windex.  You could see your reflection on just about every surface in the apartment. I’m sure his stomach must have dropped when he opened the door, saw the immaculateness and realized that his hands were going to be full.

I was sitting on the couch painting my nails (Thank God!) and was in the absolute worst mood from a tough week of work and personal obligations. We had tickets to Game 7 of the NHL Eastern Conference Finals that night to see the Boston Bruins take on the Tampa Bay Lightning for a spot in the Stanley Cup Finals. He walked in the door, took one look at me and said, “Oh Boy.” In true Jeremiah fashion, he tried everything to make me smile and snap me out of my funk. I started to lighten up until he told me that we needed to stop by a work event before we headed over to the hockey game. Truthfully, the last thing I should do when I’m in a bad mood is be around people. I know this. Everyone knows this. I can not pretend to be happy when I’m not. I’m the type of person that exactly what I am thinking is written right on my face. Having a day like this, the last thing I wanted to do was go to a work event with a bunch of people I didn’t know and put on a happy face and schmooze! Jeremiah promised it would be quick and easy. One drink, say hello to some clients and scoot over to the game. Fine! Begrudgingly, I got up to get ready and he asked that I not wear sports paraphernalia. It’s a business casual after work client reception, I got it. My mood was taking over though. I’m having a bad week, I have to go to a work party that my attitude and I have no business attending, and now he’s telling me how to dress! Is this guy kidding me?

Always the positive one, he reassured me that it’ll be painless and then we’ll get to have a great time at the game right after. He told me that he was going to valet the car at the Boston Harbor Hotel, since the reception was at Rowes Wharf, that way we could just walk over to the Garden for the game when we were through. Sounded great until we got in the car at four o’clock headed toward downtown Boston the Friday before a holiday weekend. Bumper to bumper traffic was enough to set me right back off! I started to grill him about whose idea it was to have a party the Friday before a long weekend during rush hour traffic. “Beth, will you stop? It’s going to be fine!” he kept saying. Looking back, I don’t know how he dealt with me that day!

We finally arrive to the Harbor Hotel, valet the car and cut through the lobby to the back waterfront. We are walking hand in hand chatting about the boats and the upcoming Bruins game when I notice him looking around. My sensitivity kicking in again… he has no idea where this reception is! I can’t believe it. He is looking around for his clients and co-workers and I’m going to lose my mind! I’m a little bit of a planner so the fact that he may not have gotten the location of the party that he is making me go to has started to raise my blood pressure. As I start to give it to him, he bends down on one knee and pulls a little black box out of his pocket…

Beth – “Oh my God, what are you doing!” covering my mouth.

Jeremiah – “Will you marry me?” (with the biggest smile on his face).

Beth – “But I was such a b*tch to you all day!”

Jeremiah – “I know that. Will you marry me?”

Beth – “YES!”

With that yes, Jeremiah put the most beautiful ring I have ever seen on my finger. Hysterically laughing we hugged and kissed and called our family to share the good news. We went inside the hotel, had a glass of champagne and toasted to our lives together. The night just got better. He planned for a car to pick us up and take us to an amazing dinner of oysters, champagne and decadent desserts. It was almost game time when he told me that he had sold his tickets. “No Bruins game for me tonight, had to see about a girl.” I’ll never forget that. Did I mention my mood changed?

The Bruins won and we were able to watch the end of the game with a few friends at a nearby bar before a car picked us up again and brought us back to the Boston Harbor Hotel. Unbeknownst to me, Jeremiah had reserved a suite there and gave me the key to open it up. When I unlocked the door, it was wall to wall rose petals, champagne and chocolate covered strawberries and a dozen long stem red roses. It was absolutely amazing. What started (and what I thought would stay) as a completely awful day turned out to be the best day of my life. The next day also wasn’t too shabby. He arranged for us to have breakfast in bed, couples massages and lunch in the hotel restaurant before we headed home to celebrate with our friends and family.

Every time I tell this story I’m reminded about how lucky I am. Even in my worst moments, he sees the light in me. If someone was as nasty as I was to him that day, there is no way in hell I’d be able to do what he did. But that’s Jeremiah. He’s the nicest, most positive and gentlest person I have ever met. He wears his heart on his sleeve and isn’t afraid to put himself out there. He constantly brings out the best in me and every single day that I’m with him, I learn and grow. He teaches me to be my best self and to not to sweat the small stuff.

Love happened to us when we weren’t looking for it and we feel so blessed. We love our relationship. A few good daily laughs and telling each other that we love each other as often as possible is incredibly important to us. Luckily though, it’s not something that we even need to think about – it’s completely natural. Jeremiah and I take each other for what we are. We have good days and we have bad days but in the end our focus never changes. We are committed to each other from now until forever. We can not wait until October!

Photos by Michelle Gardella Photography