Brykelle and Trey
How We Met
She was the cheerleader; I was the baseball player. Going into my freshman year at the University of Utah I didn’t know what to expect. I was never one to be active on social media, but seeing as I wanted to connect with people I created a Facebook profile. Like anyone else I started with adding my close friends, two of which were on the cheer team. Surfing through their pictures, I kept seeing “that girl”, the one girl out of all of them that stood out to me. I immediately texted my friends and said, “Set me up with her”, and that’s where our story begins. We were introduced, and though I had strong interest, we only hung out a couple of times that year. After my first college baseball season, I went on to play in Anchorage, Alaska in the Alaskan Summer Baseball League. Thousands of miles away, my interest remained. I constantly called and texted “that girl” only to find myself rejected 99% of the time. After that summer, with the exception of a run in on New Years Eve in 2011, we both went our separate ways. Every now and then she’d pop into my head, and I’d shoot her a text hinting at the notion of a hang out. Time and time again, I faced rejection. In 2013 I was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals, and chose to forgo my senior season and enter the professional world. I was sidelined with Tommy-John surgery, and spent my first professional season grinding out rehab in Jupiter, FL. During that time I began to text “that girl” again, trying to persuade her to hang out with me when I’m back in town. I then drove from Florida to Utah (38 hours) in two days. I got home around 10 p.m. on the second day. Exhausted, I offered to drive an hour south to her apartment that night to hang out with her, that’s how bad I wanted to see her. Of course, I faced rejection once again. Later that off-season, about one month before I had to leave again, I finally got her to agree to hang out with me. I think she only agreed because she thought I was all talk, but boy was she wrong. After finally hanging out, I think we were both surprised at how well we connected. We squeezed out the remaining time together, and decided to take our relationship on the road. I’m not going to lie, I was nervous. I really liked this girl, but I had never done long distance before. I entered my first spring training still on the DL, but knew I’d be healthy soon. Just as I was cleared to play, I experienced some issues back home with my brother. I had my family, my career, and my girl all on my mind, and felt very overwhelmed. It’s sad to say that one of them has to take a back seat, and at the time she was the odd-one out. We took a break for about four months, talking here and there. Once the season was over, I began my trek from Pennsylvania back home to Utah. I really wanted to see her, and she agreed to meet me at a bar with our friends. Right when I laid eyes on her, things were different. At that moment, “that girl” became the love of my life. From that day forth, we spent nearly every waking second together, and even the majority of the sleeping seconds too (haha).
Trey and I met fall of 2010, as freshmen at the University of Utah, where he played baseball and I was a cheerleader. Although I never went to a baseball game to see him play, we had a class together, and met through mutual friends.
Trey and I ran into each other off and on for a couple years after that, hanging out at parties and texting here and there. During summer 2011, Trey went to Alaska to play baseball. That summer I thought Trey would be the death of me. He texted or called me EVERY day, even if I wouldn’t reply, and I found myself saying, “This kid just cannot get the hint?!!”
Fast forward to Spring of 2013… During Trey’s junior year he was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals. I had moved from SLC to Utah County, where I’m from,—which is about an hour drive, to attend a cosmetology school in Provo. That spring, Trey had to have Tommy John surgery, and was sent home to rehab, but the texting and phone calls had never stopped. In November 2013, during one night of Trey’s persistent texting, (this is his family’s favorite part) I finally decided that I had ran out of excuses of why I couldn’t hang out with him. I told him if he was actually willing to drive an hour to my apartment in Orem, then I would hang out with him that night. I was not expecting him to actually follow through, so imagine my surprise when he showed up at my apartment that night.
Thanks to Trey’s persistency, we started dating and the rest is history!!!!
How He Asked
I received an invitation from the Italian National Baseball Team to play in a prestigious tournament called Premier 12, hosted in Taiwan. I had just finished my second minor league season, but knew I couldn’t pass this up. Once I was set to go, I had the brilliant idea of a possible storybook proposal in Taiwan. I then began scheming to get her over to Taiwan so I could make this happen. Initially, we thought it wasn’t possible due to budget reasons, plus I didn’t want her to be there alone while I’m busy playing baseball. However, we persuaded her mother, my mother, and my brother to tag along which made this idea more realistic. A few months before she knew she was going on this trip, we sat down with a ring designer. This designer put together her dream ring, and I saw her eyes light up. We left the designers knowing that was the one. When we got into the car I told her to be patient, and that I need to get some finances in order to be able to afford that ring. Realistically, I texted the designer right away and said, “put it together.” Now that the trip was here, I had to travel half way around the world with this ring, and I can tell you it never left my side. During the tournament I had one off day, and that fell on Friday the 13th; this was the day I planned the proposal. The funny thing is she is very superstitious and thinks nothing good comes on Friday the 13th. I figured I’d change her mind for good. I found the perfect spot in the city of Taipei, and planned it all out. It is called Lovers Bridge, and I knew she would eat it up. The cab ride was incredibly stressful, fighting with my brother the whole way because I thought we were going to the wrong place. After encountering a stressful cab ride and a popped blood vessel in my right eye, we finally made it. As we walked over the bridge, I saw the statue at the end that said, “Love”. This was it. With the rest of our family on board, they began taking picture of us in front of the statue. Finally after a few pictures, I fell to a knee to ask the most important questions I’ve ever asked in my life, “Will you marry me?” I’ll never forget that look on her face when she said yes, and can’t wait to share the one kiss that seals our love for eternity. I love you Brykelle Lee Cook (Nielsen).
During this baseball season, Trey was invited by the Italian National team, to play with them in the first Premier 12 World Baseball Tournament, in Taiwan. I was a little bummed out when he told me, because that meant more time we would have to spend apart during the off season.
—Being the girlfriend of a minor league baseball player can be extremely difficult. He leaves for Spring Training every February/March and is not able to come home until the offseason which is usually mid-September. Living in Utah and juggling two jobs, it is hard for me to get a ton of vacation days to be able to fly out and visit him during those 7 months. —
I was super excited for him to get this opportunity, but I’m sure you can see why I was a little upset, finding out that during the only 5 months of the year we get to spend together, he would be living in Taiwan for a month.
I debated on going to Taiwan to see him play up until a couple weeks before he left. I was not about to travel across the world to Asia, by myself, so I talked my mom into taking a little trip with me. Trey’s mom and oldest brother decided to come as well, and we started planning our little trip. (Little did I know that when Trey got the invite to play in this tournament, he had already decided that this was where he was going to propose).
On November 13th (Friday the 13th Ahh—I’m very superstitious), Trey had his only off day during the tournament. We were staying in Taichung and decided that we would travel up to Taipei for the day since he had an off day. We woke up early and made the 1 ½ drive by high speed rail to Taipei. Once we were there I asked Trey and his brother Dusty if they had scoped out any places for us to see up there.
They told me they were wanting to go to a fisherman’s wharf, so we found a taxi, and Trey showed him a picture of where we wanted to go. (Since we were in Taiwan, none of the taxi drivers spoke English. We had to pre-translate an address to Chinese or show them pictures of where we were headed, and hope we ended up in the right spot!)
As we were driving, Trey started to get extremely antsy and stressed out. He thought that our driver was going in the wrong direction and started to panic. He and Dusty were arguing, and he kept telling me to have the driver pull over. (I had to sit in the front seat because I easily get carsick—especially with the drivers in Taiwan). I was trying to explain to the driver to pull over because I thought we were going in the wrong direction, but the language barrier made it extremely difficult. Once he was able to pull over, Trey showed him the pictures again and the driver let us know that he was headed in the right direction.
Trey had to get back to Taichung for practice that afternoon, so I just figured he was stressed out because we were running out of time that he had to spend in Taipei. I had no idea the significance of this bridge. (After the proposal we noticed that Trey had actually popped a blood vessel in his eye from being so stressed out! Haha so adorable.)
We made the drive around to the other side of the island to the Fisherman’s Wharf and Lover’s Bridge. Once we got out of the taxi, we walked across the bridge and stopped to take pictures here and there. Once we started to descend down the other side of the bridge, there was a large sign at the bottom that said “Love”. We got to the other side and I instantly wanted to take some pictures in front of it…. I am obsessed with taking pictures everywhere we go, especially on trips, so of course this wasn’t anything out of the ordinary to be taking lots of pictures here. Trey’s mom, brother and my mom, had all taken a few pictures when Trey said, “Okay, one more!” He turned and started to kneel down and in my head I was thinking, “Why is he bending down? He just asked for more pictures.” When I turned to look at him to say “what are you doing??”, he was kneeling down with an open box, and the ring of my dreams. All I remember is asking him “Wait, is this real?” and the rest is a complete blur…
Trey put so much thought into this, from making sure our families were there to take pictures and videos, to organizing the most beautiful location. This surpassed anything I could ever dream of, and was by far the best day of my life. I can’t wait to be Mrs. Nielsen!!