This fairly tale begins in a land not too far away and time not too long ago (July, 2008). While in China for business, I received my match with SeAnna. I remember one line that sparked my attention. She said “I am truly happy with myself which in turn I feel would make a great relationship.” We went through the guided communication and I quickly found myself eagerly awaiting her next communication. I received the first “real” email through our real email address the day I arrived back from China.
I vividly remember our first phone call. Immediately we clicked! We talked on her drive to the Angels game. We really wanted to talk again and decided to speak right after the game got out. It was nerve-wracking waiting for her return phone call! Something felt different from the moment I heard her voice. We ended up talking into the early hours of the night. Our late conversations quickly became a trend! We weren’t “polite” and quickly threw the tough questions at one another because “hey if this person doesn’t feel this way no big deal I never have to see them again!”. It was almost like we were looking for things “not to like in the other person”. We kept saying “you can’t possibly be real!” Some of it even seemed a little too cliché. She was a former cheerleader for her college and I had been a former college track athlete. We were both self proclaimed “dorks!”
We never knew where our conversations were going to take us but they were so fun! We finally decided it was time to meet but decided to have it one week in the future. Our conversations continued to progress. They ranged from fun and playful to deep and contemplative. The build up to our first meeting was intense. It reached its pinnacle the night before a date while I was hundreds of feet in the air on the Ferris wheel at the Orange County Fair. I received a text message from her with a simple question, “Are you nervous?” I was slightly nervous but when she asked the question I became even more nervous! I remember thinking before we met, “Please let me find something attractive about her, anything!” I remember seeing her when we first met. I was overwhelmed! She looked absolutely stunning. Our lunch went amazing! Our phone chemistry carried over immediately. In fact, we both barely touched our food. Our date was ending too soon! I was playing in a softball game that afternoon. We quickly decided we wanted a double feature! So I drove back out there for frozen yogurt and more conversation.
Our fairy tale began in a whirlwind as we both quickly became intertwined in each others lives. My family was preparing to go to Hawaii and on our fifth date we were flirting and talking with each other and she said, “You are going to miss me when you are in Hawaii!” I said “By the time the trip rolls around, I am going to wish I invited you!” She teasingly said, “Yes you are!” I countered with “Would you actually go if I invited you?” Next thing you know, we have plans to go to Hawaii. My family was shocked! I had never brought a significant other with the family so early in a relationship. It was going to be 10 days together with my family and we had on been on 5 dates. Yet, it still felt absolutely the perfect thing to do!
As the Hawaii trip approached we were already inseparable but we hadn’t yet made it official that we were boyfriend and girlfriend. I wanted to do something special for her. With the help of my sister, we created a photo montage video of all our pictures! We included quotes from our eHarmony communication and emails. The first night we arrived in Hawaii I snuck the portable video player onto the moonlit Maui beach and played the video for her and asked her to be my girlfriend. She was so excited and called her parents immediately to tell them. The video is posted at http://sreh.blogspot.com
It became quickly evident to both of us that our relationship was deeper and more meaningful than any we had ever experienced. We knew we had finally met our soul mates and teammates for life. She absolutely loved her video I created for Hawaii. She had shown it to everyone who would watch it. So I decided I somehow wanted to capture the moment on video. We had also been to the Mission Inn a couple times in Riverside and it became a special place for us. One of our favorite pictures is the two of us in front of the St. Francis of Assisi Chapel. So I began to put the steps in place to make a special memory for my beautiful sweetheart that she will always remember.
I called the Mission Inn and they graciously allowed us to video tape from 8-8:30pm in front of the St. Francis of Assisi chapel. I had to figure out a way to take a good video shot while not letting her in on the surprise. I hired two videographers who would intercept us. The story would be that they needed a couple to be in a marketing video for their wedding video business. I wanted to propose to her in the same spot as our favorite picture. I decided she would likely love to have our close family and friends witness it from the fifth story above the Chapel area. With the help of her mother, we quickly invited all of our close friends and family members. We had over 30 people showing up. I was really nervous how we could sneak 30 people up to the fifth floor. So the plan was: 1) Eat dinner at Mexican Restaurant at the Mission Inn 2) Sneak 30 close friends and family up above the chapel 3) Be intercepted by “fake” video crew 4) Have the video crew direct us towards the chapel 5) Propose on video to my beautiful sweetheart 6) Keep all of it a surprise from my unsuspecting future bride!
We arrived that night at the Mission Inn slightly after 6 and were seated right away. We ate a wonderful dinner until about 7:50 P.M. Meanwhile, he family and my family arrived and entered through the security entrance at the back of the Mission Inn and snuck up above the Chapel. My mother was able to actually rent a room that is on the atrium on the 5th floor above the chapel. Everyone arrived and mingled waiting for the big event. As we left the restaurant, we passed by two men in all black with extensive video equipment. As we passed by, one of them called out to us. I pretended not to hear as SeAnna spoke to him. He told her he needs a couple to be a shoot they were doing. SeAnna was very excited about it and we decided we would do it! SeAnna bought the story hook, line and sinker! We signed “fake” talent release forms and the contracts. They filmed us walking around the Mission Inn, sitting on a bench, near a fountain, and lastly by the chapel. She kept telling videographers how much fun she was having! Then one of the videographers asked if we could read a few lines for the promotional video. He gave SeAnna a paper with “fake lines” for male and female talent and he gave me a copy of the poem I wrote SeAnna. The poem had the picture of us in front of the chapel. They mic’d me and said “action!”. At that point, I began to tell her how special she was to me. She became concerned, “Babe, I think they want you to read your lines now! Babe he said action!” Then I pulled out the poem and she saw the picture. I could see realization start to hit as she heard the words of the poem and the tears began to stream down her cheeks around her big smile. Then I dropped to one knee, pulled out the ring and asked her to marry me! She ignored the ring tackling me and she screamed yes repeatedly! Then a loud roar erupted from the skies as the closed family and friend cheered for us. It was an amazing moment! We are so very excited for a lifetime together. We are getting married January 11th, 2009!
The video of the proposal is posted at http://sreh.blogspot.com I encourage you to check it out!
Thank you eHarmony for introducing me to the most amazing woman ever! We have recommended eHarmony to many of our friends and family!