Gabrielle and Grayson
How We Met
Grayson and I both attended the University of Florida at the same time but it wasn’t until we had both graduated that we met. Grayson had started his career as an engineer in Jacksonville (which happens to be my hometown) and I was in nursing school still in Gainesville. We both grew up loving Gator football and neither of us has missed a game since we started school there. As fate would have it, we both were alumni season ticket holders in the same “recent alumni section” which was section 27 in the Swamp.
At the first game of the 2016 season neither knew our lives were about to change. I was sitting with my family and my brother’s girlfriend who had known Grayson and his brothers during their time in undergrad at UF. His brother and Grayson had spotted my brothers girlfriend in the stands and soon made their way up to say hi to her. They caught up for a minute and then she introduced them to my family. I couldn’t even tell you what I said to Grayson because I just remember looking into his eyes in that moment and thinking the whole world had stopped and we were the only two in the stadium. They quickly went back to their seats as the game was about to begin and I turned to my brothers girlfriend and said “ummm who was that!?” I spent the next few minutes telling her and my mom how cute I thought that guy was, wondering if he was single, and glancing back at him in his seat.
It turned out to be a great first game except for standing in the rain almost the entire time. Later that night I asked my brothers girlfriend again about that cute guy from the stadium, joking that she should text him and see how he’s been, AKA ask if he’s single. Less than 24 hours later she had text him, not so slyly asked if he was seeing anyone and managed to send him a picture of me and basically list my personal resume. She sent me the screenshot of his text message saying he was “definitely interested” and asked if she could send him my phone number. I said of course! It wasn’t much longer that he had text me and we started a casual conversation. Later that week he mentioned that he was coming back to Gainesville that weekend for the next game. We made this plan to go out with a group of mutual friends to keep it casual but also get to know each other a little better. Friday afternoon came and the plan was falling apart as everyone seemed to have work or didn’t want to go out for dinner anymore. I was feeling so bummed until Grayson called me and asked if I still wanted to meet up with just him. We ended up meeting up at a restaurant/bar and talking for almost 6 hours. I couldn’t believe how much we had in common and how easily the conversation flowed. More game days and date nights came and I soon realized that this was the man I have been praying for and waiting for my whole life. He is the most thoughtful, sweet, caring, selfless man I have ever met and his heart for Jesus and for others is like nothing I have ever seen before. Now a year later and we are planning our forever together!
How He Asked
A month before, Grayson had told me that he got invited to an alumni dinner event in Gainesville for a group he was involved in while attending UF. The morning of this “dinner event” I got ready at my house and Grayson came to pick me up to head to Gainesville. (He brought me Chick-fil-a breakfast so the day was already off to a good start.) He was acting completely normal to me the whole ride to Gainesville and still stayed calm as it began to pour down rain the closer we got. When we arrived he told me the event was in one of the rooms in the stadium but since we were early he suggested we go look at our season ticket seats and see if the chair backs were put on yet. I was wondering why he wanted to go to our seats in the rain before going to the event but I was very excited for football season too and agreed to go look at our seats. As we entered the stadium I realized it was not crowded like usual with fans and visitors and the guy at the gate said the stadium was about to close for the day and we needed to hurry up. As we made the walk all the way around the stadium and up to section 27 I was still completely oblivious as to what was going on.
We got to our seats and we quickly reminisced about meeting in this exact spot and what an amazing year it had been together. It was starting to rain even harder and as I got up to start walking back under cover and Grayson grabbed my hand and said “one more thing honey” before getting down on one knee!
I was completely in shock and once again felt like the entire world had stopped but this time we were actually the only ones in the stadium. Except for the two photographers that popped out to capture this moment for us. I of course said YES! Grayson then told me how he had asked my parents for their blessing and how he had the ring and this plan for months now! We spent the rest of the night celebrating with family and friends.