Spoiler alert: in case you didn’t know, I’m engaged!
Last weekend Erick and I went to D.C. to run the Cherry Blossom 10miler, and it turned out to be one of the very best weekends of my entire life. A little background: Erick loves D.C., he lived there briefly, and seeing as he’s quite the political nerd, the city holds a special place in his heart.
Erick has been excited about this trip since we got into the Cherry Blossom race months ago. He recently told me he booked a photographer to snap some pictures of us around the city, which if you know me; you know that's something I’d love (and not suspect a thing). This plan worked seamlessly for Erick as I got my nails and hair done before the trip without question. To be honest, I did have a small inkling of his plan based on other suspicious behavior throughout the week or so prior to leaving. Though, my suspicion went out the window on Thursday night when we got into a small fight. It turns out Erick’s coworker recommended he pick a fight with me once he suspected that I was onto him. It. Worked.
After a long week and some minor hiccups, we arrived in D.C. late Friday night. Our alarm went off at 4:45 a.m. on Saturday. With only four hours of sleep, we got out of bed and got ready to meet our photographer, Hannah, at the Lincoln Memorial. I stood in the bathroom putting my eye makeup on and remember looking in the mirror thinking today was going to be a good day. I had butterflies in my stomach.
After our Uber got lost and drove aimlessly out of the way for ten minutes, we finally arrived at the Lincoln Memorial. We walked up to see about 30 teenagers lined up on the stairs waiting to watch the sunrise over the Washington Monument at 5:50 a.m. Cool. I guess it’s a little selfish to expect to get the entire National Mall all to yourself, but… (P.S. – I knew the sunrise would be at 5:50 a.m. because I was assured by Erick that the sun would be up for our photos)
We finally met Hannah and instantly clicked with her. She was so fun, easygoing, and full of creative ideas. We started taking photos around the pillars of the Lincoln Memorial then moved to the Reflecting Pool. Hannah suggested we take a few individual photos, which seemed odd to me at first, but we all know I won’t turn down a photoshoot.
We took a moment to take in the beauty of the sunrise. I was not sure how well photos from a 5:50 a.m. sunrise would turn out, but the sunrise was breathtaking that morning and I couldn't believe how gorgeous the monuments looked at that hour.
Finally, we walked to our last spot, the District of Columbia War Memorial. Again, Hannah said she wanted more photos of just me. And again, I thought it seemed odd to take more individuals, but went along with it.
She gave me some direction and I went along with it, thinking she needed to tell me to do something different, since I was running out of material from my standard three Instagram modeling poses. Meanwhile, Erick had bolted to his coat and was nowhere in sight. I heard rustling behind me, but again, I was in my element of having my photo taken, so I didn’t think to look. Then Hannah said it was Erick’s turn. Without looking, I stepped aside to let Erick have the spotlight. Hannah instructed me to stay then to look at Erick. I looked over to my left and saw Erick on his knee, holding a ring box. All he was able to get out was, “I love you, I love you so much” before I rushed to him to hug and kiss him. They (bloggers, other engaged people, I really don’t know who “they” is) say this happens so quickly and becomes a blur – and it’s so true. I just remember hugging him while being in shock. Finally, he pulled back and jokingly snapped, “So, are you going to let me ask??”
I pulled away and he asked me to marry him. I said yes, and he slipped the stunning rose gold oval engagement ring onto my finger. I didn’t even look at the ring until it was on my finger, and I don’t think I’ve stopped looking at it since. It’s the most gorgeous ring I’ve ever seen. It’s even more special because Erick designed it alongside my friend, Martha, who created the ring herself (shout out M&M Jewelers in Chicago).
Afterward, we had a few minutes alone before wrapping up the photo shoot and saying our goodbyes to Hannah.
We had a 7:30 a.m. tour of the White House, so we rushed to make it there on time while we called and FaceTimed family and friends. We then went to brunch, followed by champagne at Martin’s, which is where JFK proposed to Jackie O. We even sat in the “proposal booth” where their actual proposal took place.
The engagement was perfect down to every detail. Erick put so much time and thought into everything he planned. Not only did he discuss the entire shoot beforehand with Hannah, he planned the whole morning down to a vegan breakfast, champagne toast, and he spent the last few months working closely with Martha on every detail of my ring. He even asked Hudson’s permission to marry me. I’m a pretty lucky girl to get to marry this man.
So, wedding planning has begun. Give me tips, hints, tricks, anything you’ve got! I’m listening!