Tomorrow is my four year anniversary. Four years ago today, I was super nervous, but really excited for the big day. A lot of things have happened over the course of these four years, but it’s exciting to see how God’s plan has unfolded. I am more in love with John than I was four years ago, which is hard to believe, because back then, I couldn’t have imagined loving him anymore than I did on that day.
I love our engagement story and I thought I would share it with you, my faithful blog readers. John wrote it in his journal shortly after he proposed….
Thailand, August 1, 2006 So that morning we told each other our dreams – I dreamt of stealing a pickup truck and trying in vain to return it, she dreamt of going to a party in a towel. The typical dream culprits.
After a full English breakfast (fresh squeezed mandarin juice!), we walked to the beach and swung on beach swings, ones fashioned from a single plank held by knotty nautical ropes thick as my forearm, and we took turns pushing each other in 30 foot arcs far out above the surf. As much as the beach sand exfoliated our feet, we needed a bit more work, and so ordered four hours of spa bliss: One hour of herbal steam sauna followed by a honey & tamarind body scrub, followed by an aromatherapy massage.
We were so hungry afterwards that only three crabs and a spicy papaya salad could fill us. This is the point that she told me it was the most romantic day of her life. Oh, and she mentioned something about that I was the perfect guy and I told her she was my dream woman. But alas, the wind was bowing the palm trees diagonally and the monsoon rain came down in slates, and since I had wanted to ask her on the beach I decided to put it off until tomorrow. So we went to bed and I plotted, praying for sunny skies that would serve as a metaphor for our future. (Ps. She thought that since I hadn’t asked her that day, that I wasn’t planning to do it on the trip, and grudgingly decided to wait)
Next morning, we collected shells on the beach, four to five inch whorled shells that tapered to a fine point. After a fine Thai lunch, I read her a long list of reasons why I loved her, reasons I had been writing all trip long. She cried. Then we took a long walk on our beach, past the few tourists, toward the end where the sand gave way to rocky cliffs. When we were alone on the white sands beach, I told her that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with her and then dropped to a knee. Amber: “Oh my gosh, oh no you’re not.” Me: (Breaking out ring) “Will you marry me?” Amber: “Oh my gosh, I can’t believe how big it is.” Me: “Is that a yes?” Amber: “Yes, yes, of course yes!”
Then this cute elderly Irish couple with long white hair (who were traveling for three years!) came down the beach jokingly shielding their eyes because we were making out. “Hey, we just got engaged,” I told them. So they hugged and kissed and congratulated us, then we all took pictures together.
We took a taxi back to our resort where the top concierge was in on my plan, and she hugged and kissed Amber too, then (according to my instructions) broke out margaritas, a gigantic chocolate cake with two candles and a huge bouquet. While we ate cake, I read her an essay I wrote about asking her father for permission to marry her, in which he spoke in glowing terms about his wonderful daughter. She cried again. Dinner of a head-to-tail seabass followed, accompanied by lovely Thai dishes, and running on proposal fuel we phoned our parents and told them the wonderful news. Then, five months later, came the wedding.
I adore our wedding photos. Even four years later, I still enjoy looking at the images that the Sanderl’s took.