Thursday, April 19, 2012
Real Bride: Meet Rachel
With all that being said a light bulb went off and I called my sweet friend Rachel. You have heard me talk about Rachel here. You all know how excited I am to be her Maid of Honor, best friend, lover and helpful wedding planning aid. She has been kicking wedding planning in the teeth. She is doing great! I asked Rachel if she would be willing to talk about her wedding planning journey. She knows what it is like to talk to the caterer then hang up that phone call only to answer a call from the photographer. She is working hard to make her dream wedding happen on a reasonable budget including money she has worked hard to save. She knows what it is like to work 5 days a week and put up with me asking a million questions about her big day. We agreed that she would write when she had time. Yeah, I filled her plate up a bit more. She understood my thoughts on hearing what a planning bride has to say. Without further ado, meet Rachel.
Hey ya’ll!! I’m Rachel and I am here to let you know you AREN’T the only crazy emotional basket case, soon to be MRS. out there. Shaun getting down on one knee was one of the happiest moments of my life. What I didn’t know, while anticipating this moment my whole life, was all that came along with him finally asking. To be perfectly honest with you, planning our wedding has been a roller coaster of emotions. As if working a 8 to 5 Monday through Friday job, training child care providers a couple of nights a week and every weekend, keeping up with housework, and trying to maintain a great relationship with my fiancé wasn’t enough let me just top all that off with a 7 month wedding engagement! Don’t get me wrong, I am VERY excited but the emotional journey has been a lot more than I ever expected.
There are so many things I want to share with you. Things that have worked and things I wish I could have done differently. Yes, it has only been a month and a half and I am already regretting some of my decisions. Before we start our expedition together I want you to get to know me a little better. How better than to just tell you a little about mine and Shaun’s relationship? Who doesn’t like a good love story?
Shaun and I saw each other for the first time at a surprise birthday party for Katie’s then boyfriend. I was new in town and was basically meeting everyone for the first time. I couldn’t help but be attracted to his smile. We didn’t talk all night but somehow I knew we would soon be spending time together. The next day I received a Facebook message from him. We went back and forth for a bit and then he asked for my number. I wasn’t expecting much of anything but the next day he actually called and we talked for what seemed like hours. The relationship grew slowly, slower than any other relationship I had ever been in. It wasn’t rushed or taken too seriously for a long time, which is why I think we grew so close. Neither one felt the pressure of a serious relationship so we were both able to be ourselves. We spent a lot of our nights sitting and chatting about life over 50 cent wings at a local dive with live music. Over the past two years we have made so many memories: concerts, camping trips, wedding weekends, ballgames and just nights sitting around the campfire talking about our days. I learned from him to slow down and enjoy the simple things in life. I am here to tell you if you think you know the type of Prince Charming that will be waiting for you one day, you are wrong! I truly didn’t know what I was missing in my life until I found Shaun. Sounds corny, but he completes me! You don’t know what you need until you find it. Luckily, I found him!
Family and friends are both huge parts of our lives. So, of course, when planning our engagement Shaun wanted them to be involved. We went to Little Rock for what I thought was just a spur of the moment getaway weekend. We had John, one of Shaun’s best friends, keep Rocky for the weekend so I didn’t assume anything would be happening. Typically, with this group of guys, if someone is going to propose then everyone would be there. Since John was willing to stay around Jonesboro for the weekend, I didn’t think anything of it. We had such an amazing weekend. We went out Friday and danced the night away at a little pub down the street. Saturday was full of relaxing. We slept in and took our time getting around. We went for a wonderful afternoon hike on Pinnacle Mountain and then returned to our room to get ready for dinner date with our friends Brady and Sarah. We were meeting them right down from the hotel and since it was such a nice night we decided to walk. As we began to get closer to our destination, Shaun began walking slower and slower. So much so that at one point I told him to come on slow poke! Little did I know that he was getting butterflies for what he was about to do. Before grabbing the doorknob to walk inside, Shaun gently touched my arm and turned me around. While turning I realized he was getting on one knee. I couldn’t believe it. I had told myself all week and weekend that it wasn’t going to happen this weekend so you can imagine that I was caught completely off guard. I felt like we were the only two people in the whole world. He told me how he had been planning this for a long time. I am sure he said a few other things after that and in between actually saying “I love you so much and I want to spend the rest of my life with you! Will you marry me?” Of course, I was in shock and the reality had not hit. I said yes and he put the ring on my finger. After hugging for a bit on the sidewalk he told me he had our friends and family inside waiting to celebrate with us. I couldn’t believe it! Shaun isn’t much of a planner. For him to have gone to the extent of having our families there, some serious planning had been done. We were surrounded by love all night. It was the perfect night!
Sometimes I cannot believe we are ready to plan a wedding. Thank you all for taking the time to get to know me and letting me share. I am so glad that you all will be taking this journey with me. Planning has already taught me so much and I plan to share those lessons with you. I guess catching the bouquet at Katie's wedding did just the trick!