Susie and Shawn

How We Met

My return flight home from a work trip had been delayed so I spent the extra time at the airport getting caught up on missed messages on my online dating profile. Per usual, there was nothing even worth responding to in my inbox, so I quickly switched my focus to browse profiles of other singles in my city. It was rare that I saw a profile the piqued my interest enough to initiate conversation with a message and even more rare that I would I actually muster the guts to hit send. My online dating game was not strong. While scrolling through that night, I came across a profile for a tall, light haired guy with a great smile and a profile written with wit and confidence. I read over his responses several times eager know more and examined the pictures he had posted to his profile. Just as the desk attendant announced my flight was going to be delayed even further, I asked myself, “what have I got to lose” and settled into my nook of the airport to craft a short message to “svs5201”. By the time I landed in Boston very late that night, I had a response to my original message from a man named Shawn. After exchanging a few messages, we made arrangements to meet the following night for our very first date. We met by Bunker Hill Monument in Charlestown, right down the street from my apartment. Dinner and wine later, I remember walking home thinking I had finally had a promising first date experience from my stint in the online dating world. Excited and definitely interested, Shawn and I saw each other again just two days after our first date. Since then, I have spent every day in love with the man who I have learned is even better than the one described in his profile!

How He Asked

Fast forward two and a half years and like any other almost thirty-year old couple, Shawn and I have relocated from living in our separate apartments in the city to a home in the suburbs north of Boston. It is not often we are downtown nowadays, especially not in my old neighborhood. Charlestown remains a special place for us as it’s full of so many of our first memories together. Earlier in the week, Shawn mentioned we had plans that coming Saturday night to meet his friend Brad and his wife for dinner in Charlestown. Though I would have much preferred a night in with my pajamas and a movie, I agreed to the plans mainly for the chance to eat at one of my favorite bistros in my old neighborhood. While walking down to the part of Charlestown by the harbor, an area called The Navy Yard, Shawn suggested we visit the pier I had once taken him to on one of our earlier dates “for old time’s sake.” After convincing me it would just take a few minutes and we wouldn’t be late to meet our friends, we walked onto the pier where Shawn and I shared our first kiss. The sun was just setting and the harbor was quiet. We looked around at the setting sun and agreed to take a picture of ourselves, using the camera on his iPhone. Before I could even see how the picture came out, Shawn looked at it and said, “you can’t see the city skyline in that photos, let’s try this…” and set the phone down on the pier, leaning up against the cleat of the dock. Holding my hands, Shawn motioned for me to step away from from the camera and into the frame. Confused as to how this picture would be taken, I questioned Shawn’s method. At that moment, Shawn started speaking and I realized this was not to be just any picture of us on the pier. Before I knew it, Shawn was on one knee, explaining that he had brought me back to the place where he first knew he wanted to spend the rest of his life with me to ask me if I would be his wife. I will never be able to recall the exact words of his amazing proposal despite telling myself to savor ever millisecond. With a Bluetooth clicker that Shawn had synced to his cellphone and with the ring in one hand and the remote in the other, he captured this unforgettable moment where I said “yes!” After enjoying our special moment in our special spot, Shawn  surprised me with dinner not with the friends we were supposed to meet, but both of our families – and of course it was at my favorite Charlestown bistro!

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Special Thanks

Shawn Vanseth