Haley and Derek
How We Met
I met Derek when we were in 5th grade when he moved here to Alabama from his hometown of Nebraska. We became friends right away and were actually boyfriend and girlfriend for like a week in 7th grade:) We began dating officially in February 2010, when we were juniors in high school. We decided to stay together through college even though we were would be 15 hours away from each other. I was a college cheerleader at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and he began college as a football player at the University of Nebraska. Derek ended up transferring to UAB our sophomore year, which was a dream come true because I would finally get to be on the sidelines cheering for him, just like the high school days! We have grown up together and matured together in our relationship over the past 7 years and I could not be happier. Since the beginning, I knew there was something special about Derek, little did I know, I had just met my best friend and soulmate.
How He Asked
I always thought Hawaii would be a great place to vacation, so the minute Derek asked me to go there with him, I couldn’t turn it down. Derek’s’ dad found out last spring that he was going to be stationed in Honolulu, Hawaii with the Army in June 2016 and he invited us to go with them. Once we got there, everything was perfect! I was with the perfect guy with his amazing family and honestly didn’t think i could be happier! My parents had told me before I left that they were going to the beach for a week or so while I was gone so tried to talk to them some and they didn’t respond. I just thought they were out at the beach and didn’t bring their phones so I wasn’t too bothered. When we got there, Derek’s parents had to immediately begin looking for a house since they would be living there for the next 3 years (so jealous).
One of the days, Derek and I decided while they went and looked at houses, we would just go find a beach to hang out on for the day. When we got there, he took a few phone calls and when I asked who it was, he said it was his parents asking his opinion on a few different houses. Derek then asked me if I wanted to go to a luau with his parents that night, and who says no to a luau?! We left soon after to go get ready and when we got there, his parents were ready and leaving to go “sign papers on a house”. I got ready and we put the address in my GPS and headed that way. When we were getting close, I told Derek to turn right. We didn’t turn. I told him again and he kept going and responded, “Oh crap! I missed it!” Well then he asks me if I wanted to go to a popular lookout spot that was just ahead. I agreed, he parks and asks me to walk up there with him.
I didn’t think anything about it except that I was in heels and a dress and we were about to walk up a mountain and it was super windy. Once we got to the top, it was the most beautiful sight I had ever seen. The view overlooked the ocean and I was in awe. Then I turn around to look at Derek and he grabbed both of my hands and looked into my eyes. I immediately knew what was about to happen. He told me how much he loved me and that I was the only girl he had ever loved and that he wanted to spend his life with me. Of course, I am sobbing with happy tears and he looks over to his left and smiles.. I look. His whole family and MY FAMILY were on top of this mountain holding a sign that said, “Haley, Will you marry me?”.
Derek surprised me and flew my parents out to Hawaii to witness this perfect moment and I had no idea!! I was sobbing before, then after seeing both of our families there, I was ecstatic. It was the most thoughtful thing anyone has ever done for me!! Of course, I SAID YES and he had made reservations at a sushi restaurant (our fave type of date) for us and our families to celebrate afterwards.
I can’t put into words how incredible this man is and I am the luckiest woman in the world because I get to spend the rest of my life with him!!