Brian and Jessie's Message in a Bottle Proposal
How we met: Jessie and I met on December 27th when I came back on leave after a 2 Month deployment. I was down near Haiti and Guantanamo Bay. My sister decided to throw me a coming home party at Toby Keith’s bar. My grade school friends were all invited, and one of them Jamie, works with Jessie. Jessie wasn’t initially planning on coming but Jamie talked her into it after she showed her my picture. I was standing at the bar when they arrived. Jessie introduced herself to me, and I was immediately overwhelmed with how beautiful this girl was!! Jessie introduced herself and started to shake my hand. I was feeling a little bold, most likely the tequila, to which I replied “I don’t shake hands” and went in to give her a hug. I turned around to grab my beer and was speaking to Jamie. I was absolutely terrified because I thought this girl was drop dead gorgeous and there’s no way she’d be interested in me! Jessie took my facial expressions as I sign I wasn’t interested and wanted to go home because she thought I wasn’t interested. I was petrified because she was the most beautiful girl in the entire world especially in that green shirt and jeans which I remember vividly to this day.
Ultimately I got the courage to ask her to dance as I had no clue how to talk to her. Ever since then it’s been nothing short of amazing. I think my dance moves got her. We hung out every day for the next week until I had to go back to Boston, my assignment. As fate would have it, I begged my command to allow me to take a temporary assignment in Indiana for the next two months as another crew took our cutter on patrol. We spent every day together until my assignment was up and she came out to visit me in Boston. We flew back home together after our trip in Boston, spent every day together on leave in Chicago until I finally came out to Yorktown, VA for BM A-school.
How he asked: I knew the moment I met Jessie that I had met my soulmate. I absolutely knew it without a doubt. We are both very outdoorsy people and a little redneck. My class does our PT runs off base near the battle grounds of Yorktown specifically Wormley pond. It’s absolutely beautiful and I knew Jessie would love the place. I contacted Audrey about setting up a couples’ photography shoot as Jessie really wanted to do that, however, it was super expensive. I found Audrey’s amazing photograph so I had to spoil part of the surprise to Jessie. I informed her we would be doing a photo shoot at the Pond, and I showed her Audrey’s portfolio. It was exactly the style Jessie loved. This took some stress of my shoulders as now I had a little bit off my chest, but not the big surprise. The first time I told Jessie I loved her was in a birthday gift for her. I’m very nautical and the least bit crafty so I made her a message in a bottle with sea shells and sand. At the top, I left a note wrapped up which said “I love you”. I knew I had to stick with this theme as I thought it was special that the first time, I told her I love her, that this time, it meant I’ll love you forever. The big day arrived and Jessie knew I was acting funny. I couldn’t hide it. I was soo nervous. As the shoot began to conclude, Audrey informed Jessie about the bottle and had her posed to be reading it facing towards the water.
As Jessie read it, I noticed she flipped it to the back side of the note which at the bottom read “PS Turn around. I have another surprise”. To her surprise, she turned around and I was on one knee asking her to marry me. I chose that spot also because it was the same place that I called her dad a week prior to let him know how much his daughter meant to me and that through stormy skies, 36ft waves, and freezing rain, she was the one who got me through my last deployment in the Atlantic.
Photography by Audrey Rose Photography