I missed one of the most important moments of my life because I was too busy partying. I missed my own proposal.
It was New Year’s Eve, and I was partying, obviously. I was with my wonderful boyfriend, who took me out for a fabulous dinner and to see some amazing fireworks. The wine was flowing (and flowing and flowing) as we met new and old friends. It was truly a magical night.
So magical, and filled with so much wine, in fact, that I missed all the signs that a surprise was coming.
A married couple we just met asked if we were married, to which my boyfriend replied, “No, but we will be someday,” with a wink in my direction.
Each time I reached for another glass of wine, my boyfriend said to me, “Don’t you think you’d better stop drinking?” Why?! I was having So. Much. Fun!
At a party later in the evening, a friend was leaving to drive across town to pick up her sister. I cheerily offered to go with her and help her watch out for drunk drivers. My boyfriend begged me not to go. “What if you are not back by midnight?”
We did make it back by midnight, but just barely. He grabbed my hand, told our hosts goodnight, and whisked me out of the party. I was upset. I wanted to stay. So much fun! So much wine!
Back at my apartment, I didn’t want the festivities to end so I turned on the TV to watch the ball drop. My boyfriend kept trying to turn my attention away from the scene in Times Square, but I kept giggling and wishing I had more wine to toast the new year.
Then, just as the count wound down to one and the new year was ushered in, my boyfriend dropped to one knee and pulled out the most beautiful ring I’d ever seen.
Through drunken tears I kept repeating, “What are you doing? What are you doing?” To this day, I have no idea what he actually said. I just know that I said yes, and that my wonderful boyfriend became a wonderful husband and father whom I still adore 15 years later.
There’s just one thing: Our proposal is a sore spot for him. Anytime someone asks, I launch into the story of the perfect New Year’s Eve and the strategically timed proposal signaling that we were destined to spend rest of our lives together.
But my husband smirks and says, “Yeah, but she doesn’t remember a word I said.”
I felt horrible. I still do.
Despite my botching our proposal, our marriage has been strong. We’ve had our share of ups and downs, but time and time again my husband has proven himself a solid rock. Even though I don’t remember exactly why he wanted to marry me in the first place, I think I have a good idea. He shows me every day, when I’m clear-headed enough to see it.
Ten years after that surprise proposal, he surprised me again with a 40th birthday party. I had no idea until I walked into the room to shouts of “Surprise!” and a chorus of “Happy birthday to youuu.” It was, of course, wonderful and perfectly planned. Most of my friends and family were in attendance, and it was exactly what I needed.
I didn’t have any wine and I remember everything about the party.