Marisa and Jonathan

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How We Met

When I first met my now fiancé, I was 16. I was sitting in my friend, Vanessa’s room when I saw she received a text from a boy named ‘Johnny Baby’ on her phone. Being as I knew that was NOT her boyfriend’s name I asked, “Who the hell is Johnny Baby?” She laughed and said he was a friend of her boyfriend and ‘Johnny Baby’ was his nickname that everyone called him. Being the nosey best friend I am, I asked her to show me a picture of him on his MySpace page and I instantly had a crush. He had big dark eyes, a cute nose, gorgeous lips and a nice smile. His name was Jonathan. I was intrigued, I asked her to introduce us. Of course this is all done over the internet because our generation is ridiculous and social interaction is terrifying, at least it was to me. Anyways, long story short we would instant message and talk on the phone almost everyday after school and work.

He made me laugh a lot and we would talk about literally anything and everything. We had a comfortable friendship, I felt like I could tell him anything but for some reason it wasn’t in our interest to meet each other right away. Shyness I suppose. A few months down the road, the same friend Vanessa, who introduced us, told me she could pick me up from school after 4th period and we could go eat. I was stoked; an early day from school and lunch not from the cafeteria. I was walking to her car to meet her in the parking lot and sure enough, there Jonathan was in the front passenger seat. I got in the backseat and he turned around and said, “Hi” with that perfect smile. From that moment on, he would be the most beautiful person I have ever seen.

How He Asked

Earlier in the year Jonathan’s dad suggested we take a family trip to New York, with his brother and his brother’s girlfriend as well. We jumped at the idea and said, “Let’s do it!” New York is our favorite place to be. Come September, it was time to pack our bags and head to LAX. We had so much fun in New York. We saw the Dodgers beat the Yankees, we were there for the 15 year anniversary of 9/11, we had amazing meals with each other and made so many memories. I am partial to one memory though. It was Tuesday the 13th, when Jonathan told me he had to leave us for the afternoon to sign onto his laptop and work for a few hours. As bummed as I was, work is work, so I gave him a kiss and a hug and we went our separate ways. His family and I walked around 5th Avenue for the afternoon before heading back to our hotel.

When we walked into our hotel room, Jonathan wasn’t there. His laptop was nowhere in sight. I was confused, but I got ready for dinner anyways. Jonathan texted me about a half an hour later to meet him by the elevator. I walked over and saw he was standing there with a beautiful bouquet of flowers. He looked upset though. I asked if everything was okay. He said everything was fine, he was just frustrated he had to work on vacation and offered me the flowers as an apology for being absent most of the afternoon.

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He got dressed and then we headed to meet his family for drinks before we headed down to Chelsea for dinner. His frustration wore off after we had a cocktail and sat down for dinner. I assumed he was just hangry. We had such a great night, everything about our dinner was amazing. It was nearing the end of dinner when I went to the bathroom. I came back and the table was empty except for Jonathan.

I asked where everyone had gone and he said they had gone back to the hotel for drinks and we would meet them there. I wasn’t ready to end our night yet so I was happy to hop in the cab and meet up with everyone. I told the cab driver to take us back the hotel, when Jonathan interrupted me to say “Take us to the Brooklyn Bridge Park.” I was confused and asked why he wanted to go and he let me know that at night the view of Manhattan was amazing from Brooklyn. I was so happy after our wonderful dinner, I didn’t even second guess it or think anything of it. Jonathan always changed plans or has spontaneous things up his sleeve. I was wrong to think this wasn’t special. We got out of our cab and start walking towards the water that separated Brooklyn and Manhattan. We had been talking for awhile when it started.

The good stuff, the romance, the extra cheese that everyone in this world needs to hear. I can’t lie and say I remember this part word for word because I don’t. I don’t remember the words, I remember the feeling. I remember my heart racing, my eyes focusing, him looking down because he was so nervous, him smiling and then becoming serious all at once. I came to from this euphoric black out when I looked him straight in the face, the most beautiful face I have ever seen to this day and his eyes were watering. “So I have one more question to ask you…” He got down on one knee, he looked up at me and he asked me to be his wife.

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In this moment I was crying, and said, “Of course!” I was hugging him and kissing him but the feeling I had wasn’t the feeling of, “Wow I am engaged, I am going to be a bride!” I had the feeling of, “Wow. The person who has seen me at my worst, the person who has shared my best moments, who has found me in times of darkness and has dragged me out alive, the person who I consider home, wants to belong to me. He wants me to belong to him…”

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I was humbled to be seen that way by my best friend. This moment truly is special. After our moment I was leaning on him as we walked out of the park. I was stunned, my ring is absolutely beautiful and I could not stop staring at it. But what killed me, like the way Ernest Hemingway said it should, was as we were walking out of the park he told me his plans were ruined by a series of misfortunate events.

One thing after another came undone. He had this big plan to propose before dinner, so pictures could be taken and the moment could be captured because that’s who Jonathan is and because it was ruined he considered saving it for when we came back to LA. He told me while he was at dinner he made his decision to do it that night. He told me, “I just couldn’t leave New York without you…” He said it shyly, in the way I remember him from when we first met, nervous and coy. I just smiled and told him, “You never will again.”

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His family was hiding while he proposed to see if they could capture the moment. It’s not high quality but it was just as sparkly as in the picture. After he proposed they came out cheering to congratulate us.

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