It is always so heartwarming to hear the story of a couple who has been together for so long that they know everything about one another; in fact, it is hard to think of one without the other. This month's Engagement Story is about a couple who embodies that scenario perfectly. They are getting married this month on the 23rd in Miami, FL. Everyone: meet Patricia & Gabriel!!
Everyone has their favorite love story, but mine of course is ours. To this day I vividly remember daydreaming in Spanish class during my sophomore year of high school thinking to myself, “I wonder where my future husband is right now?” Little did I know he was sitting right across from me.
Our first date was during spring break of our junior year of high school. We spent the day at the beach hanging out with all of our friends. We spent hours basking in the warm sunshine talking, laughing, and enjoying life. That day he got a sunburn we would never forget as he had burned one side of his face, the side that had been facing me for hours. Since that day, every time we go to the beach I make sure he never forgets to apply sunscreen. A few dates later, we went on a walk to the park by my parents house. He said he had been planning a surprise for me. He then proceeded to recite a monologue from “The Picture of Dorian Gray” by Oscar Wilde, from which I remember him saying I had a beauty that “moved him to tears”. The monologue ended with him breaking character and asking me to be his girlfriend. The date was April 1, 2005. It’s been nine years since then and our love for each other has grown up with us.
Life Since Then
It’s been a wild ride so far! Every minute together is time well spent. We’ve lived life to the fullest, taking advantage of every moment, supporting one another in our endeavors and being a constant in each other’s lives. Even though we spent our college years in different states, my room was always lined with upside down rose stained walls and 'I miss you' became synonymous with 'I love you'. We spent the summers together enjoying time with each other, friends, and family. Through the years, we’ve been able to grow in love and in life, and best part is we’ve gotten to do that together. Gaby is my family and I look forward to making many new memories with him by my side for the rest of our lives.
This, as you can imagine, has been a long time coming. For many months Gaby recreated our special dates making me think each time that it was it. Each time he would look at me meaningfully and then ask me silly questions or get down on one knee to pick something up. Finally, he got me, and he got me good! He even got my family in on it. My sister called me to schedule a family dinner and while we were on our way over she called to say they were at the park by my parents house. So as Gaby and I were wandering through the park looking for my family we came across a park bench. Hidden behind a nearby tree was his guitar and the photo album I given to him as a Christmas gift in college and had gotten into the habit of updating every couple of years. He had me sit down on the bench to flip through all the pictures while we played a song he wrote for me. At the end of the album there were a couple of new photos he had added along with cute pictures of dogs dressed up as brides and grooms. As he finished singing the last lyrics “side by side as man and wife” there was a succession of doggie pictures that said Will…You…Marry. Me. He then pulled out a red little box and inside it was the most beautiful ring I had ever seen. He asked me to be his wife at the very same place he had asked me to be his girlfriend.
Since our love story is so one-of-a kind I wanted our proposal story to be too. I planned a romantic dinner-for-two at a beautiful historic hotel in the Gables. I had met with the staff earlier that day and reserved a table for two next to the courtyard fountain. When we arrived for dinner that evening, it started raining and we were moved under a covered area still in view of the fountain. We wined and dined our way through dinner leading up to a very special dessert. I had predetermined that he would order the molten chocolate lava cake, which he did, so when it was time for dessert the staff eagerly awaited while I handed Gaby a hand-made card. When he got to the end he looked up slightly confused as I had written that I had a question to ask him. The staff brought out the decadent dessert plate and bubbly champagne flutes. Hidden among the strawberries was the promise ring that he had given me years back. My accomplice, his father, had been hiding behind a plant in the courtyard taking pictures the whole time. I had proposed back to him the way he had many times teased he would do to me, with the ring hidden in a chocolate cake. Marriage, like all relationships, is a two-way street. Gaby had asked me if I would marry him, but I also wanted to ask him if he would marry me.
Before The Wedding
Once again I find truth to absence makes the heart grow fonder as we are living long distance for the last time. Deep down in my heart, I have always had a feeling that I knew we were meant to be together. Always. Even through some of the hardest moments apart, inevitably we always found our way back into each other’s arms. I love Gaby. I love Gaby with all my heart and with all my soul and I know that he loves me too. He’s in my thoughts and in my dreams. I feel so blessed to be able to have a constant overwhelming sense of love, adoration, and passion in my life. So yes, after all this time…always.
Patricia and Gabriel's story never fails to bring a tear to my eye. I wish you both the best, and I cannot wait to see what the future has in store for you both!
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