Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Thank you, dolphins

I wasn’t expecting for my knees to buckle.

But then again, if I would have thought about it seriously beforehand—like, checked boxes of all the emotions I would expect—“buckled knees” would definitely have been on the list.

I certainly couldn’t imagine how his knees felt, especially considering he was kneeling on one.

Errrrr…you might see where I’m going with this one.




January 20:  The day Donald Trump got sworn in, the day of the most seasonably warm Friday in Charleston, South Carolina, the day I GOT ENGAGED TO DANIEL.


People ask me if I knew he was going to propose. And I did.

Not that I knew he’d propose on that day, or that time, but I knew it was going to happen.

We had been together for over a year and had talked many times about how we wanted to be together forever.

We are in a long-distance relationship and we had talked location logistics many times. About how I was going to move back home to New Orleans and we were going to be together every day, not just once a month.

Not for nothing, he’d say. 

I wouldn’t be giving up the life I built in Charleston for nothing.

I was going to move home so that we could get married and start this part of our lives together and there was no questioning or second-guessing that on his end, not even for a second.

There was no one else in the world he'd rather be with, or talk with, or even sit next to, talking about everything and nothing at all. And I felt the exact same way.

So yes, I knew.


But did I know that he had packed the velvety ring box in his luggage on his flight to Charleston this past weekend?

Did I know that the morning I had planned for us to go sit on the beach and stare at the lighthouse he had slipped the box into his pocket?

Did I know that it was more important than ever that the temperamental golf cart my roommate owns would make it to the lighthouse without incident??

No, no I did not.

In fact, I live Instagrammed a video that day specifically calling him my boyfriend.


(a video of a video)


But all went as planned—and more—when we arrived at the Morris Island Lighthouse on Folly Beach on January 20.

The golf cart made it, the beer stayed cold, the weather was warm and sunny.

Now that I remember it, Daniel actually pointed to a big rock nearby where someone had spray-painted “Bree, will you go out with me?”

Clearly, this was a spot where you ask someone a major question. 


We sat in our beach chairs facing the lighthouse for about 30 minutes and then as if planned, I saw two dolphins break the surface of the water.

“LOOK!” I shouted to Daniel, pointing at the shallow area near the lighthouse, having his eyesight follow my finger.


They weren’t shy about popping out of the water, about 40 feet out in the ocean.

“Awww it’s good luck to see them!” I said, a mantra I made up myself.

“Well, speaking of good luck...” Daniel said, and then he got on one knee right in the sand next to my beach chair. 

“I want to ask you something I’ve been wanting to ask you for a long time...”

“NOOOOO!” I said—yes, I actually said NO before he even asked me…THIS ISN'T LIKE THE MOVIES, PEOPLE!!!!—because I couldn’t imagine being engaged right then and I was completely taken off guard.

But I wasn’t serious, and Daniel knew that. 

He laughed and looked at me seriously and asked me to marry him. 

And then he opened up the box with the most beautiful diamond ring I had ever seen. Knees in the sand.

“Will you marry me?” he asked.

“YES!” I said and then leapt out of my chair and kissed him and that’s when I realized I couldn’t feel my knees and had to sit back down.

I put the ring on my finger and it fit perfectly, despite neither me nor him knowing my actual ring size.

After a number of “Are you serious? Is this serious?” questions and “When did you---? How did you--?” and more hugging and kissing and me crying under my sunglasses it hit me that it was happening.

This part of my life was actually happening.


And just like that, all the talks about us getting engaged weren't just talks anymore. 

Of all the dolphins fish in the sea, this was where I landed, into the arms of this fantastically kind and caring person who truly meant it when he said he wanted me and only me for the rest of his life.

And right then Daniel told me that he secretly made reservations at a fancy restaurant that night, the same restaurant that was our first date in November 2015.

A reservation in anticipation of our engagement.

“What if I said no?” I asked, still happy crying.

“You did, technically,” he laughed. And we both laughed and I realized that I’d get to laugh with him forever.

I called every family member after that right on the beach, and then called all my close friends interrupting their Friday work day. 

I had to FaceTime my twin sister Joy who screamed with excitement and disrupted all her co-workers.

“You know, he asked your father for his blessing months ago,” my mom revealed, and I beamed.

After another 45 minutes we went back to the golf cart, back to my apartment and everything was wildly different yet everything the same.

“It feels different getting ready to go out this time,” Daniel said a few hours later, as we were getting ready to go meet friends for celebratory champagne and then on to dinner.

“Tell me about it!” I said, staring at my ring (I CAN’T STOP STARING AT MY RING).

And things have felt different ever since then.

Sure, physically different, as in sometimes the ring feels heavy on my finger, sometimes I don’t feel it at all and panic to make sure it’s still on there—but also different in that I have a new sense of confidence. 

In not just us, but in myself, too.

Like...he knows everything about me and he still wants to marry me! Hahahaha

(I know...Me??? Neurotic???)

He wasn't even deterred by my Toolbag Tuesday blog! In fact, he's made sure I'll never, ever have to date another Toolbag again.


(...But I'll still write about your toolbags!!!)


I’ve been overwhelmed with love from all corners of the world, especially from Joy my twin sister, who married her OWN Daniel last year, which is 100 percent fate.




Someone up there is laughing, over the moon.

...Possibly getting weak in the knees.


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