The Magical Proposal
November 17, 2019
After the encephalitis, which I will henceforth refer to as Evil E, I was in inpatient rehab for several weeks. I had planned to try to go back to work, right away, but as my release date drew closer, I began to realize that my job probably wasn't waiting for me.1

Drew and I talked about what we'd do about my health insurance. He sort of hinted that we could get me on his health benefits. 😏

I knew he was suggesting marriage, but as much as I already knew I wanted to be his wife, this wasn't what I'd envisioned. I told him, "I don't want that to be why."

He assured me that that wasn't the only reason, and I knew it wasn't, but still... I coyly told him that I expected a formal proposal.

We've never really discussed it again, since.

Skip ahead to several months ago when I realized that Adina would be turning 40 this year. I told Drew that I wanted to do something special for hers because she had thrown a surprise party for my 40th, and it was wonderful. Since she and Drew have the same birthday, he suggested that we invite her along on our trip to Orlando. All three of us are Disney freaks and Harry Potter geeks.

Honestly, I was reluctant to ask her, because the break in our living together as a family (mine and Adina’s) came after an ugly trip to Disneyland with my last and only other fiancé since my first marriage ended more than twenty years ago. She hadn't yet met Drew, other than via video-chat, so I didn't know how she'd feel about it. I was thrilled when she seemed excited about it. The planning commenced.

In September or August, Drew's brother, Kevin, sent me a message that he was going to fly out to Orlando on Drew's birthday to surprise him. He hadn't said much about it since then, so I hadn't said anything to Adina about it.

On the 13th, Kevin sent me a message asking what hotel we were staying in. He was going to be flying in the next night! I panicked. I thought he’d be flying in on Saturday, Drew’s and Adina’s birthday, if he came at all, so I thought he’d be meeting us in the park to surprise Drew. Now I had to figure out how to either be there when Kevin arrived or have a key waiting at the desk for him all without Drew finding out. I was also going to have to find a way to let Adina know about the change in plans and that she’d be sharing a hotel room with two men she didn’t know!

The anxiety got overwhelming, so I told Drew about the surprise. I felt horrible ruining it, but I had too much anxiety to try to work it out. He was excited that Kevin was coming. I made him promise that he’d act surprised.

The next morning, Kevin sent Drew a text that he had upgraded to first class. I thought, “That doofus is going to ruin his own surprise!” I managed to have a rollaway brought to the room and a key at the desk for Kevin, and I started feeling like a jerk for having told Drew that he was coming.

I called Adina while she was on the way to the airport. The surprise addition caused her a little bit of anxiety, so I was sitting on the balcony apologizing for not telling her sooner and assured her that it would be fine. Kevin is a great guy – a big goofy teddy bear.

After the surprise wore off, she assured me that she’d be okay, and we’d have fun.

After I got off the phone, I went back into the room to find Drew getting out of bed. He had some tension in his voice and asked me why I felt I had to apologize to Adina because his brother was coming. I explained the situation and assured him that Adina is the best adventure partner one could hope for. She’s always open to suggestions and she’s flexible. I promised him there would be no drama, but now I had more anxiety. I was worried that he’d harbor some resentment or even caution, and that Adina might pick up on it and be uncomfortable.

Everyone arrived, everyone met and talked and fun was had. The next morning, Adina and I went to the park by ourselves. Drew and Kevin were both feeling pretty bad. We had fun, though. We rode the things we wanted to ride and saw the things we wanted to see. That night we all went over to BJ’s for dinner.

And the next day was November 16, the birthday of my two soulmates and the 34th anniversary of my parents. I spent that morning writing about how important the day is to me.

Drew had told me months ago that he wanted the birthday to be special for Adina, so he wanted to be in Diagon Alley on their birthday. I was just so thrilled that he wanted to make it special for her that I didn’t think about what ulterior motives he might have.

I must admit that the thought had occurred to me that if he had wanted to, this would have been the perfect opportunity to propose. So, when he pulled me to the side and Adina stepped away to give us some privacy, he called her back over. I thought, “Is this happening?”

Then he told me that he had a confession to make. This had all been a setup. He had asked Kevin to fly out so that he could record the proposal. He wanted it to be there, in Diagon Alley² with his brother and one of my best friends to witness. Then he got on his knee and pulled out that ring.³

<pausing for nose-blowing and tear-dabbing>

You can’t hear it in the video, but I think that’s a pretty good recollection of the moment. You can, of course, hear my teacher-voice declaring, “I thought you’d never ask!”

Magical is the only word I can use to describe it.

We have a tentative date of May 29, 2021, and a tentative location of Tahoe.

What did I ever do to deserve this man?

I hold no ill will regarding that. Keith was so good to me, but he had a business to run and other people depending on him. He had to get his bills paid and his people needed paychecks. He had to replace me. It also became apparent very quickly, that I would not have been able to return to full time work, anyway.
On our very first date, when he told me he loved Harry Potter, I jokingly said, “marry me!”
The Great Story about the Ring: Apparently, Drew ordered my ring back in August. When we had briefly discussed marriage, I made it clear to him that I don’t want diamonds. So he looked until he found something sparkly that had no diamonds, and it being made in Italy, he knew it would be extra special because I talk so often about my travels there.
In order to surprise me, he had the ring shipped to a store in Smithfield, the next town over. Since I don’t work and he works from home, it was some time before he could get over there to get the ring. Imagine his disgust when he found out that they had already sent it back!
He went round and round with them for some time before it was all worked out. Though he’d ordered it in August, it did not arrive until the Thursday before we left for Orlando! I asked him what he’d have done if it hadn’t come. He said he’d have found something temporary. I’m glad he didn’t have to do that, because even if it had been a twist tie from a loaf of bread, I’d have kept it forever.