Mackenzie and Alex
How We Met
Alex and I grew up in the same hometown and met for the first time when I was 10 years old. We were both auditioning for roles in our community theatre’s youth production of The Wizard of Oz. I don’t remember much about that day, but I definitely remember Alex. He got on stage to audition and sing “If I Were King of the Forest” for the Cowardly Lion, and the moment he started singing, the entire auditorium became quiet. He absolutely nailed the solo – no one could even compare to him! Obviously, he got the role of the Cowardly Lion, and I was an “Oz Lady.” I’m pretty sure he had no idea who I was, even though he says now that he did (sure…).
Our paths crossed again four years later when we were once again cast in the same play, but this time we both had lead roles and spent a lot of time in rehearsals together. I had the BIGGEST crush on this cute, high-school senior, and even asked him to teach me guitar lessons on the side. I was desperate to get to know him! After 24 performances of the play and an eventful night riding four-wheelers in the mud with our friends, our friendship was firmly established. Keyword… friendship.
For the next five and a half years, we were extremely good friends and always made a point to see each other during holiday breaks when we were both home from college. Every time Alex would ask to visit me, I thought he was just being friendly. Little did I know that he had a crush on me too!
Finally, during Thanksgiving break of 2015, Alex had the courage to ask me to go to dinner – just to “catch up,” of course. We were “supposed” to meet all of our friends after dinner, but they all bailed! Dinner turned into putt-putt golf, which turned into a movie. Basically the perfect first date, and it was all an accident!
Being the guy that he was, Alex decided to play it cool and didn’t mention anything about how our relationship was changing. Meanwhile, I was freaking out on the inside. Finally a few days later, he texts me the longest message on the planet with the sweetest words explaining how much he had liked me for a long time and wanted to see where the relationship could go. A few weeks later, we finally had our first “real” date, and we’ve been together since!
How He Asked
For several weeks leading up to December 23, Alex had been planning a trip. As pilots, we usually jump at the chance to fly somewhere – even if it’s only a day trip. Alex told me several weeks in advance that on this day we would fly to pick up his brother and bring him home for Christmas. Of course, I thought it was a great idea, but I thought it was odd Alex never asked me to go. He just stated we were going, and that was that. The Saturday morning of the proposal dawned bright and early. Looking back, my family made sure everything was perfect from the moment I woke up… a hot pot of coffee, freshly baked cinnamon rolls, and lots of conversation (now I realize they were trying to keep me distracted!).
Alex picked me up from my parents’ house to go buy some last-minute Christmas presents before we went to the airport. Once we finally got to the airport, we were so disappointed to see the weather most likely wasn’t going to cooperate for our long-distance flight. So, Alex called his brother and told him to drive home instead. Since we suddenly had an hour and a half to kill, Alex suggested we should go flying around our hometown – after all, we were already at the airport. Thankfully, the weather was looking better, and we had clearance to fly. Honestly though, if we were just going to fly around Meridian, I wasn’t quite in the mood. I told him, “I don’t want to go flying, but if you really want to, I’ll go.” (Sorry for being difficult!) Once we took off, Alex wanted to fly to my family’s private airport for some “practice landings.” After we landed, Alex decided it would be nice to “stop by” and “visit” with my granddaddy.
So, we taxied to the hangar, and I saw the sign that changed everything: “Marry me?” My heart was racing a million miles an hour – no one had ever successfully surprised me like this. Alex then walked me in front of the hangar where he said some of the sweetest things I’ve ever heard and asked me to be his forever. It was such a blur that I’m not even sure I officially said “yes!”
But the moment he put the ring on my finger, the hangar doors burst open, and all our family and friends were there to celebrate! Even in my wildest dreams, I never could have pictured a more perfect engagement, and I cannot wait to marry this thoughtful, loving man.