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December 13, 2012, I was up to my chin in stress from the week, with finals every day, graduation just around the corner and the unknown always knocking on my front door…now before you think your about to read a horror story I promise you it gets better! I woke up early to study for my last final, blissfully un aware of what happenings the day would bring. I met with Will to eat lunch in the OC cafeteria like always and then he dropped me off and kissed me for good luck on my final.
“How long do you think your test will take?” -Will, planning away
“30-45 min at the most” – oblivious to what was to come
I hopped off to class ready to finnish this dreadful week!! My final ended up being a take home, even though he told us we were going to have to hand write an 1,000 word paper in class. “YES!” Best thing that could happen on my last day of finals. I was able to go back to my apartment and start writing. It was such a relief. No one was at the apartment but Sara and her friend then the door opened and I was diligently working away at my essay.The last person I expected to just walk in was Will!! He was all smiles with a big bouquet of flowers in his handsome hands and I was really surprised!!! and Excited I love flowers. =)
“Stop that…what are you doing? Are those for me!” -super high pitched happy Jessica voice.
“These aren’t for you until your finished with your test.” -He’s adorable when he gets me flowers
I quickly finished my final and waited for my flowers and of course a kiss. Then Will sat down beside me and made me a deal (because I love deals).
“Here’s the deal…today is going to be all about you. I took off work so that we can go find you a dress for graduation, celebrate that your done with school and go out for dinner later…what do you say? sound like a deal?”-the best boyfriend in the world
We did just that, long story short we had a wonderful day of shopping, being silly, trying on every dress at the mall and not running out of gas…wink wink (we may or may not have made it to a gas station in time…that we can leave up to your imagination.)
We had a wonderful but long afternoon but finally found the perfect dress at Fossil my favorite store.
Will said: ”Would you like to dress up for dinner?”
and I replied: “uhhh duh!” I’m paraphrasing of course.
He took me back to my apartment and asked me to text him my dress color. I was so excited and happy, I think I got ready quicker than I ever have. I sat and talked with Lauren while I waited for Will to pick me up. When he arrived I asked him where we were going and he said it was a SURPRISE!! I try to tell him how much I love surprises so… this was PERFECT!! I didn’t even care where we were going. I was having a great day and excited to be graduating and of course to watch the hobbit that night!!! We had been planning to watch the hobbit at midnight before we even left New Zealand. You could say I was probably too excited to see the midnight showing the last day of finals.
Now to the best part of the story…We arrived at Tokyo OKC. A restaurant that we were first introduced to before going on Pac Rim (the study abroad trip where we met) and then shortly after we returned from Study Abroad it was our first official date right around Valentines day. Needless to say we hadn’t been back in a while and I was excited to be eating sushi. Will and I have fallen in love with sushi ever since returning from Japan. Tokyo has really traditional Japanese style food and atmosphere.
When we arrived I was surprised to see we had reservations and our waitress led us toward the back and then down a little side hall to a private room.
The first thing I read was “please take off your shoes” I felt like I was at my host family’s home in Japan as I remembered the proper way to take off your shoes before entering a japanese home or even some restaurants. If you were to ask me when I thought I knew it was now. As we stepped into the room it was arranged for two. One red pillow for me to sit on and a blue one for Will. The room took us back to Ibaraki Japan with it’s traditional seating on the floor, lighting and Japanese windows and decor. Let me just say it was perfect, like we were back in Japan. I even felt a little jet lagged from the long week and late nights studying.
We ate our sushi and got this mountain of a dessert. I think we ate more desert than sushi. We ordered a glass of wine to taste and then our waitress left us alone.
“I have one surprise left” -an excited and sweet William
“So close your eyes” -Will
I folded my hands around my eyes and couldn’t keep from all the excitement and joy from welling up inside me and beaming out my smile. I was so giddy in that moment and so happy I would have sat there with my eyes shut forever.
“Soo….” -smiling from ear to ear
“Your just so cute” -a just as excited Will
“Ok open you eyes” -holding a ring in his hand he began to say how he knew from the very beginning I was the one he wanted to be sitting here with. + all the most wonderful things
“Jessica Sharon Brand, Will you Marry Me?” -a patently waiting, to be groom
“Of course I will!!!!!! YES YES YES!!”- a newly engaged and super excited to be Bride
I talked him and kissed him and smiled the biggest smile. I honestly didn’t want to leave. After a while we slipped our shoes back and we walked out of the restaurant I wanted to stick out myleft hand and show off my ring to every stranger there. Will picked it out him self with a little support from a friend and it’s absolutely perfect! I love it. it’s perfect Will’s perfect for me and I couldn’t be happier.
“When I saw it I knew it was yours” -Will
After dinner we went to see one of my best friends and then met up with my parents and Will’s parents who were patiently waiting to see us.
And then of course we went to see the midnight showing of The Hobbit!! what a long and eventful day. I wouldn’t have it any other way.
“I’M ENGAGED!!!” -new fiancé
I can’t wait to share the rest of our adventure as we prepare for the celebration with our closest friends and family! Be sure to read Will’s side of the story as well!
She said YES!… oh well I guess I should start a little farther back in the story.
After knowing I wanted to ask Jessica to marry me during the fall semester I struggled over the best/right time and place to do it and the all important question of what about a ring?
The answer to the “all important” question came first. At OC lighting of the Commons on Nov. 27th I was able to hang out with some friends I hadn’t seen in a while. Most importantly, my long time good friend Shannon. She has been married about 2 1/2 years now, and has been itching to get me hitched. So, through the conversation of her poking a prodding to get answers out of me about my future plans, she offered to help me pick out a ring. It took me just 24 hours to take her up on that offer. It was a little tricky getting away from Jessica, since the end of the semester was coming and we were wanting to spend as much time as possible together. As God planned it (well I believe), Jessica was working a theatrical production the night I planned on looking for a ring. So, I used that opportunity and a small lie to get away. I told her, I was going to the Apple Store in the mall to exchange my iPod since the battery had died. It was still a tough sale, but she took it without thinking twice. I picked up Shannon and we went to the mall because we knew the jewelry stores there would be open untill at least the mall closed. After reviewing the Board Jessica created for me several months ago I had a pretty good idea what she wanted. Being the first time I had ever seriously shopped for jewelry Shannon was a great help to let me knew what I was even looking at. We hit all the major ones and then finally at the last one there it was. It fit all the specifications and I loved it!
Over the next few days after getting the ring I analyzed the calendar to find the right date. With other activities and the stress of Jessica’s finals/graduating I decided that I would be best to do it after finals. So, Thursday Dec. 13th was the day. After that the plan just fell together. Her parents were already planing to come down that night to be here for graduation the next morning and my parents were planning on coming up as well. After some advice from my brother about finding some place special to us. I decided to take her to Tokyo OKC. This is where our first date was and where our Pac-Rim Study Abroad group went as a precursor to our food adventures in Japan. We had already planned on seeing the Hobbit that night at midnight so there was a perfect end to a perfect night 😉
After taking Jessica to lunch and dropping her off to take her last final, I went and got the prettiest bouquet of flowers I could find to surprise her after her test. I headed to her classroom to wait for her to finnish her test, but when I got there her teacher said she was already gone. So, I went to her apartment hoping I would find her there. She was there! but she hadn’t finished her final, so I waited to give her the flowers. After she finished I gave her the flowers and explained that we were going to hang out the rest of the day to celebrate her graduation. The first stop was to buy a dress for graduation the next day. We went to the mall, and after several hours and dresses and stores we finally found the perfect dress. I wasn’t even nerves at all…I knew she loved me and that all that mattered. I was kinda afraid she would find the ring in my coat pocket, or over hear me talking with her mom as I stepped out of the store while she tried on dresses. but she didn’t…. By this time we were already past our dinner reservation time, but being a Thursday night I figured they wouldn’t be too busy. After dropping her off at her apartment to get ready, I called the restaurant and was able to move it back an hour giving us enough time to get ready. I had her text me the color of her dress so I could pick the right tie. When I picked her up she looked so beautiful and I knew that this night was going to be perfect. She begged me to tell her where we were going but I told her it was a secret. She knew right when we got off the highway where we were going even tho we hadn’t been there for almost 2 years. She was so excited!! I was just hoping that my façade of tonight just being only about Graduating was still holding up. We sent to the private room I had reserved and it was like going back to Japan. We really cherish our time that we spent in Japan on our Study Abroad trip. They made us take off our shoes and we sat on the floor at a table set for two. To our surprise tho under the table gave way to a lowered floor so we could sit normally and be comfortable…..I can’t even explain it, the night was just so perfect picking out sushi, getting pile of this fried ice cream desert, having a great day so far getting her the perfect dress and knowing she was relieved of finals and about to graduate. It a perfect day….Then I told her I had one more surprise. I was trying to figure out how to get the ring out of the coat without her seeing it, and it seemed impossible, so I had her close her eyes, and all the while wondering how I was supposed to get down on one knee when we were already sitting on the floor. I don’t know how to say how wonderful it felt to finally be able to ask the girl of my dreams to marry me. I couldn’t help but stare at her for a minute soaking in the moment. I could tell that she knew what was coming next, because she had the biggest smile that I had ever seen. In effort to not kill her in anticipation. I let her open her eyes. We locked eyes and I felt like this moment could last forever. There wasn’t much I could say that I hadn’t already said except for… “Will you marry me?” and she said yes! I couldn’t have asked for any better if I had planned it ;).