Heather and Zachary
How We Met
My first memory of Zach is from one of my very first days at Palm Beach Atlantic University. We were both in an 8 AM class, which for college students might as well be 5 AM, called Intro to Education. Zach was a fellow education major and also the only male in the class. One morning he sloshed into class, soaking wet, in his bathing suit, with surfboard in hand. He leaned the board against a wall in the classroom and took his seat as a puddle of water was forming under his desk. I decided in that moment that I wanted nothing to do with him and avoided him for the rest of the semester until he switched majors to Cinematelevision. But God had other plans for us. About a year later, Zach and I were both at a Friendsgiving right before everyone left PBA for Thanksgiving break. We had taken desks from our dorms and pushed them all together to make one long table surrounded by office chairs. It didn’t look like much, but I will always remember that night. A mutual friend had invited both of us but Zach came in late, so we had already started eating. I could tell he was feeling a little awkward, so I pulled over an end table because we were out of office chairs and invited him to sit next to me. We talked, laughed, ate and began forming a friendship.
That friendship grew and before I knew it, we were keeping in touch over Christmas break. Whether it was over text or phone calls, we were talking an average of 12 hours every day. Finally, Zach got the courage to ask me on a date when we both returned to school. I don’t think that I’ve ever been so nervous in my life. We had spent little time together in person and I didn’t know if the chemistry we had over the phone would still be there in real life. Zach had a lot more to worry about, because it was also the day of his brother’s wedding! He says that to this day his biggest regret was not taking full advantage of the Chipotle buffet they served. He couldn’t eat anything at the wedding because he was just as nervous as I was! When he knocked on my dorm room door, I literally jumped. I’m pretty sure I was shaking as I opened the door. Zach was standing in the doorway with a beautiful bouquet of flowers from the wedding. We then walked along the intercostal waterfront and down Worth Avenue on Palm Beach. Zach picked out a quiet alcove with a garden and a bench, where we sat and talked for hours. We shared stories of how God had worked in our lives and our thoughts on what godly dating looks like. I felt like I could tell him anything. I have never felt so comfortable with someone so quickly. I saw that he had the crazy adventurous side that I first encountered in our 8 AM class, but there was also so much depth to him and he loved the Lord with his whole heart. Now I can’t wait to be the one walking down the aisle to him carrying flowers similar to the ones that he brought me on our first date.
How He Asked
The day that Zach proposed was the most beautiful 60 degree sunny day and Zach had planned out my dream day. We headed to the Green Market in Downtown West Palm, just like any other Saturday, sampling the foods, sipping on a smoothie and enjoying the beautiful weather. Zach and I picked a succulent to add to the ever growing collection on my windowsill. Zach stopped twice to talk with homeless men that we walked past and pray for them. I’m so proud that on a day that he had so much to think about and plan, he was still taking time to show kindness to others. Next he took me for lunch at Loic, a brand new French bakery that I had been dying to try. I had one of the best meals of my life there, and we even met the owner. He treated us like old friends and even gave Zach a hug when we left. I will literally be dreaming of the mozzarella, tomato and balsamic sandwich until I go back. The next stop was back to where it all began, Worth Ave. We recreated the walk that we went on two years ago. We were nervous and unsure then, but this time we were joyful and reminiscent on how far
We’ve come not only in our relationship with each other, but also with God. I cried happy tears as we sat down on the same bench we had spent so many hours on two January’s ago, thinking about how I had no idea then the adventure I was about to go on. We started heading back to the car, only to realize that we had lost the keys on our walk! So we took the entire walk for the third time in our lives but this time was a little less joyful and a lot more frantic. After finding the keys, Zach took me to a nautical junk yard that we would frequently drive past. Each time I would remark that I wanted to check that place out. Today was my day and it was even cooler than I anticipated. There were parts of boats, driftwood and nautical relics that made for amazing pictures. Anyone who knows me knows that I am a Target girl to my core. I can easily get lost in the store and somehow exit 3 hours later with a cart full of stuff I don’t need and a smile on my face. So Zach knew that my perfect day would have to include Target. He said that we needed to get a new pot for my succulent that we purchased that morning and I happily obliged because I’ll take any excuse to visit my favorite store.
Finally, the next stop was Riverbend Park in Jupiter. Zach played worship music in the car on the way there and began talking about what I mean to him. Tears streamed down my face as we thanked God for bringing us together and blessing our relationship. I remembered nights in high school and college where I had grown frustrated in my singleness and wondered when I would finally find someone. God was with me on all of those lonely nights and He was with Zach and I on that special day. When we arrived to Riverbend Park I noticed that Zach was starting to get nervous as we walked down a path next to the water. In the distance I spotted a circle made from fairy lights and rose petals. When we got to the circle, Zach spoke some sweet words and got down on one knee to ask me to be his bride. Even more tears flooded my eyes as I said YES!! He slid the most beautiful ring I have ever seen on my finger. Then some of my closes friends popped out of the surrounding bushes and we celebrated with the most beautiful picnic as the sun set.
The celebrating wasn’t over yet! The next day, my roommates and mom had planned an engagement party for us to celebrate with our friends. As we were preparing to go to the party, Zach pulled me aside. He had used his talents for filmmaking to create a video with clips that he had taken, some secretly, of me from the past year. It culminated with a video that our friend and fellow videographer took during our engagement. He wanted me to see it with him first before he showed it at the party. I was so touched and I’m pretty sure I cry a little harder every time I watch it. When he put it up on the TV screen, there wasn’t a dry eye in the place! We were so excited to celebrate with everyone and it was absolutely a weekend that can’t be beat.