I tried to start writing this piece several times, but it all just sounded very gushy. You see, I’m head over heels in love with the most amazing person and trying to write normally about them just feels like I’m downplaying that.
But before I make you feel ill with all my romance, let me get to the point.
Amazing man and I met at a mutual friend’s wedding two years ago. We talked all through the night and when my friend picked me up the next morning and asked how it went I just felt shell shocked from the scale of the feelings I had for him after only one night.
Later I messaged him, explaining that I had absolutely no game/chill/moves and was, as some might describe it, SUPER KEEN. And so the happiest romance began.
Last year was a rough one for me, and at every low point he was there to care for me, support me, and build me up again. In my high points he was my biggest supporter, always overselling me to his friends and family. He is one of the most genuinely kind and amazing people I have ever met.
So obviously I wanted to spend my life with him and marry him right? Who wouldn’t?
We talked about our future and getting married a lot, and both knew that the other was keen. But, there was one day when I was sitting having a cup of tea last year that I realised I wanted to propose.
There are almost no tips on how to do this. Men’s size charts for fingers are totally bizarre. The jeweller told me twice to just bring him in to get him measured, even though I said it was a surprise. It was like there was no protocol for this.
I tried to surreptitiously measure his finger with a string to get an idea of what size, and eventually at the beginning of December I bought the ring.
Kudos to everyone out there who has proposed because it is quite nerve-wracking. On Christmas day I packed the rings in my bag, waiting to spend some time together after our family lunch.
But we ate too much and were lethargic and tired and the vibe was just not right. I went home, hid the rings again and tried to decide what to do. The next week was such a rush with friends and family visiting from all over.
Everyone was asking when we’d get married and my insides felt like jelly thinking that I wanted to say SOON BECAUSE I HAVE RINGS HIDDEN IN MY CUPBOARD.
Then, on New Year’s Eve we finally had a little time for a nap between seeing one group of friends and our New Year’s party. I woke after a few minutes thinking – I can’t wait anymore. So I woke him up, and asked him to marry me. Thank goodness, he said yes.
Over the course of the next few days we called family and friends to let them know. The reactions we got were mostly positive, though some people seemed disappointed that I’d proposed, as though I had taken something from him, or he had let down the man tribe in some way.
Many people responded to the news saying ‘oh, a leap year’ as though that was the limiting condition under which a woman had any right to propose.
Others did that thing where they say ‘oh’ and try to maintain the same big smile they had just moments before, whilst trying to work out what to say next.
It was clear from these reactions that there was still a sense that I had done something a bit weird, or unnatural, and that proposing remained in their minds ‘a man’s job’.
Perhaps it’s because, like many things in life, we haven’t got any scripts for different gender relations than those in Disney movies. I hear a lot of stories of women waiting in suffering for their partner to propose as if they don’t have any option to ask the question themselves.
A New Yorker article on women proposing suggests that some people think it’s not romantic, in all likelihood linked to narratives of prince charming sweeping you off your feet.
Well, I was swept off my feet. But, then I put my feet back down and I walked towards the person I want to be with forever.