Cynthia and Tyketon

How We Met

Natasha, my best friend invited me to visit her family in Alabama for the holidays. It was there where I met Tyketon, her younger brother my same age. It was an instant attraction on my part. He was funny, charming, handsome and had the most amazing ginger curls. We shared a jittery handshake and a few nervous conversations over time but he just didn’t seem interested. Tyketon even refused to call me by my real name and insisted on names like “chrysanthemum” and “sopapilla”. He avoided me like the plague, really. But there was something there, beyond him scurrying off every time I entered the room, I knew we had something. I realized I didn’t have a Christmas gift for him so Natasha and I found him this hideous, mustard yellow sweater at the Goodwill. As a child, Tyketon was forced to wear a similar one and he absolutely hated it. It was obviously the best gag gift I could get for a man I barely knew. If only I could make him laugh I thought. Using my very basic, flirting skills, I tried to impress him by telling him I did yoga (insert eye roll here). I joked to make an effort to start a new trend, (because yoga leggings are overrated jk) and come up with “yoga sweats”. He obviously listened because as my Christmas present, he made me my very own, special pair of pink glitter yoga sweats.

Proposal Ideas Swan Covered Bridge, Cleveland, AL

Ridiculous! But there is something to be said about someone who takes the time to make you a gift. We, However, that was that. I returned to Kentucky with Natasha, where I would remain a few more days until heading home to Arizona on New Year’s Eve. I still had Tyketon on my mind but had decided it was a fleeting idea. One evening, a funny Instagram page posted the holy grail of memes; “When you’re over dropping subtle hints to the guy you like and getting nowhere” followed by a picture of a crude statement on a candy heart (Mom, forgive me). For the most part, I am timid and not outgoing but I figured, oh, what the heck, what do I have to lose? I screenshot it and sent it on its way. When I finally heard my messaging alert go off, I pounced on my phone only to see a picture of Admiral Ackbar stating “it’s a trap!” Disappointed, I blew the whole thing off.

Cynthia and Tyketon's Engagement in Swan Covered Bridge, Cleveland, AL

The next morning I was packing up and gathering my things (I was due to fly home to AZ the following day) I hear Nastaha yell from downstairs “CYNTHIA! WHAT DID YOU TELL HIM?!” She repeated herself over and over and then I realized, Tyketon had driven 4 hours to come visit me on my last day there. I was completely shocked. We spent the day touring Natasha’s military base and finished the night with pizza and movies. Tyketon finally let his guard down and said he didn’t want to get involved with his sisters best friend but it was too late for that now. We didn’t sleep, we stayed up watching stand up by Eliza Shlesinger, music videos by Flight of the Conchords, quoting movies and drinking wine. It was the best night of my life. Soon it was 0500 and I had a plane to catch. He went back to Alabama and I flew home. Not a single day went by that we didn’t text and on weekends we would spend hours on the phone.

Cynthia's Proposal in Swan Covered Bridge, Cleveland, AL

I never imagined a long distance relationship would work but Tyketon removed all of my doubts. The next time I saw him was 5 months later, we met for a week in Florida. I took sand in a bottle and hoped to use it when making his wedding band someday. It was only our second time hanging out, but I knew he was the one. We continued the long-distance relationship. Seeing each other only 5 more times (for about a week each time) in the span of a year and a half. Tyketon was then stationed at the same base as Natasha, in Kentucky. We decided we had enough of this long distance and I moved in with him. It was finally on our two year anniversary that he proposed!

How He Asked

On Sunday, December 31, 2018, we were in Alabama visiting Tyketons parents. We woke up, went to church service and went to the traditional, after service meal, this time at Jim and Nicks BBQ. Tyketon and I both love the outdoors and sightseeing and he had been telling me about these covered bridges in Alabama. The only covered bridge I had ever seen was in the movie “Homeward Bound” (the sequel, I think) and the Alabama countryside is so scenic so I was excited at the idea of going out. I wanted to change out of my church clothes but Tyketon insisted I remain in my dress.

It was one my mother had bought me and he said I looked good in it. Mind you it’s winter so going sightseeing in a dress and heels wasn’t ideal but I thought, what the heck, and we could get a formal photo of us on our anniversary because his parents were coming along. We posed for a photo and then I heard him say “I’m going to do one more pose” and before I knew it, he was down on one knee. He even wore the shirt he wore the day he drove up to Kentucky to see me.