Our Engagement Story

While we waited for the repairs, I had to decide how, when, and where to propose. The when was pretty much a given- as soon as the ring was ready. I did not want to wait. I didn't want to do it at Atlantic City, though, because I did not want to have to carry the ring around with me there before proposing and therefore be paranoid about losing it. Plus Joyce had told me that her brother got engaged there and I didn't want to duplicate his scenario.

I was unsure of the right way to propose. I wasn't sure if I should set up a public event at her office, or with her friends, or a private one with just us. If I chose a private proposal, where should I do it? Since I was not exactly sure how Joyce would take a public proposal, and with helpful advice from some trusted friends, I decided to do it privately. I considered two options- recreating our first date by going to Macaroni Grill and proposing there, or sneaking up on her and doing it at her office some afternoon. Since I wanted to surprise her, I decided to plan for the office option. I thought she'd see right through an offer to go to Macaroni Grill as an obvious proposal plan.

I also wanted to add something to the proposal besides just asking her to marry me. I read some ideas on line and merged a few into one plan. I found a bunch of pictures and made her a picture book. Each picture was on its own page of a small photo album, and I captioned each photo with a reason why I loved her. My plan was to show her the book, read her the captions, and then at the very end, pull out the ring and propose.

It was very hard to wait for Wednesday and Thursday to come. The store was supposed to call me at work when the ring was ready. When they didn't call by the time I left work Wednesday evening, I asked my coworker Steve to call me on my cell phone if they did call. (He comes in a little later and stays later in the evening) Since we were going out to eat to celebrate Joyce's birthday that night, I had to bring my phone to the restaurant. Joyce was obviously suspicious when I brought the phone out and laid it on the table. She asked if I was expecting any calls. I made up a story about a possible work thing coming up. I don't think she bought it.

The call did not come Wednesday, so I called them Thursday. The ring was finished at about 2:00, so I told my coworkers that if Joyce called, tell her we had an unexpected visitor and I had to escort him around for a couple of hours. They knew my plan and said they'd cover for me. I emailed Joyce and told her the same cover story so she wouldn't be suspicious if I didn't answer her emails promptly. I then went home, got my paperwork, and headed for the mall.


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