“Ma’am, do you mind to take one more?”
Those would be the last words I would say before my life would change forever.
My wife and I had been dating for a solid 6 months since she returned from her year-long stay in Slovakia. It was about 2 months before she left on that missions trip when we officially became a couple. It was the most difficult year of my life, but we both learned many things about ourselves while she was serving God on the mission field. Although I was thankful for God that we had that time to be apart, I was extremely thankful the day she arrived back in the US.
During the next 7 months, we continued getting to know each other, praying about our future together, and just enjoying spending time with each other. I knew she was the girl that I would someday marry, but I was nervous about proceeding with the next steps in making that happen. I knew I would have to ask her dad, purchase the ring, and then plan on the perfect scenario that every girl dreams of since her childhood years. I wanted the moment that I asked Vicki to marry me to be special – a day that she would never forget.
After finally talking to her dad, and purchasing the ring – all I had to do was come up with the plan. Vicki had casually mentioned one time months before (perhaps while she was even in Slovakia) that she would love to be proposed to in front of the giant Christmas tree at the Rockefeller Center in New York City. So – there was no doubt in my mind that we would have to go there. I requested off work for a random Friday and told Vicki that we would spend the day going Christmas shopping. It wasn’t until the night before we left that I casually mentioned with her the idea of ditching shopping and going on a road trip to New York City. I figured if she thought it was a spontaneous trip she would have no idea I had something major planned.
Friday morning, December 14, 2007 arrived, and I was nervously excited. I picked up my future bride and we left for the Big Apple. After parking our car in New Jersey and taking the PATH train across the river into New York, we jumped on the subway. My legs were most likely nervously rocking up and down as we sat on the train headed straight for the Rockefeller Center. Anytime I visit New York City – my favorite part is coming up out of the Subway and seeing all the big buildings, bright lights, taxis and everything that makes New York City the most famous city in the world! Today would be no different, and when we walked around the corner, there was the tree, the ice skating rink, NBC studios, and what looked like a million people. Then it hit me… WHY DID I COME UP WITH THIS IDEA!?!? Why couldn’t I have picked a silent spot in the woods? Why couldn’t Vicki have picked a different location for her perfect scenario?
I began scoping out the area looking for a good spot. This was going to be a challenge. While this was happening, and I’m trying to think on the fly, I realized that Vicki really didn’t want to be at the tree. You see – she had already been slightly disappointed in the past month because we had gone on a few romantic dates where she thought I was going to pop the big question. In the back of her mind, she didn’t want to get her hopes up only to be disappointed so this was the last place she wanted to be if we were just going to spend a few minutes looking at the tree. With so many people around it was hard to find a good spot to do this. We actually started to walk away when I asked her to walk around the ice skating rink to the other side of the tree. She reluctantly agreed. After we walked around to the other side, I found a spot for the two of us.
“Excuse me ma’am, could you please take a picture of us”?
Here was my moment. She counts to 3. What am I waiting for? The camera flashes and she takes our picture. The camera lady started walking back to us to give us our camera back. With a quiver in my voice, I asked her once more.
“Ma’am – do you mind to take one more?”
She looked surprised, but said “Sure”. Vicki looked at me like I was silly. As I mentioned – she was ready to head to our next stop.
I took a deep breath. Ok, here goes.
I got down on one knee.
Vicki’s eyes pop open. She shockingly says, “What are you doing!?!”.
The camera lady started freaking out!
“Will you marry me?”
“YES! Of course!”
Success! We hugged! Kissed! Hugged again. I yelled out “I AM THE LUCKIEST MAN ALIVE” and all 1 million people simultaneously gave us a standing ovation. A camera crew came out and interviewed us for the Today Show.
Ok – neither of those last two things happened… but we did hug and kiss! And laugh! And call all of our family members!
We then proceeded to spend the rest of the day in New York City. We went to Central Park and went on a ride around the park. It was a great day – and it was gotten better every day since then.
My life changed forever that day. I am so thankful for the wife that God provided for me.
Vicki, I love you so much! Thank you so much for these past 3 years! Let’s make the next 3, 30, 60, even better!