We had both taken to the dating apps, hoping to find a good person to be with and not the flings you hear about. One day that January, the beginning of winter quarter at EWU (ironically he’s older but was two years behind me in college so our paths wouldn’t have crossed naturally), we matched. Basically we just clicked from when we first started talking and hung out on campus and have been inseparable ever since!
When we met, we were both attending Eastern Washington University (Go Eags!). Abbigail was a Junior pursuing her degree in Biochemistry and Joe was a freshman, at the time going for a degree in business but later switched to Exercise Science. Abbigail was in a lot of very difficult courses in the first year and a half of dating and Joe was a huge support in making it through the very stressful days and all the studying up to graduating in 2019. Joe also had a lot of stressful times when it came to switching his major, balancing school, work, and involvement in his fraternity, all on his own, and Abbigail was right by his side through it all! Three years after Abbigail, in 2022, and after lots of studying, activities, tailgating, etc., Joe finally graduated! Since graduating, Joe has worked towards his national personal training certification and worked at the Amazon facility nearby. Meanwhile, Abbigail was starting her career at her internship at a weed laboratory (the most ironic job for someone who has never partaken), then upgraded to a full-time scientist position at an environmental testing laboratory, to now a quality control scientist at a local pharmaceutical manufacturer! There have been so many highs and lows together over the years. Abbigail and Joe have celebrated many accomplishments together, had multiple camping trips, concerts, visiting each others friends and families, and so many more! From the stressed out nights, Abbigail pulling bloody gauze from Joe's mouth in his wisdom tooth removal recovery, all the way to making it through the insanity that has been the last few years in the world, they have stuck together through it all, and if that's not love, I don't know what is!
We had been talking for weeks, months even, about going to Manito Park this summer to finally see all the flowers in bloom since in years past we somehow were so off that we visited after all the flowers were gone or before anything was even close to blooming. I had also been telling Joe periodically, in a hypothetical scenario where he were to propose I do not want it in a crowded public way, it’s just not my thing. We get to the Duncan Gardens and multiple families are there running around, the pathways are muddy so kneeling wasn’t really an option, I’m sure Joe was getting nervous. We walked around for a while, just taking in all the views until we found a grass field with a bench to sit at in the shade and it was easily 90+ degrees out. Eventually when the area cleared out it was just us and he popped the question and of course I said yes! For some some behind the scenes leading up to that day, let’s rewind to July 2022. That Fourth of July weekend I was in Las Vegas visiting my mom since they just moved and it worked out for me to make it down there. Waiting to pick me up at the airport when I got home and alone with his thoughts, Joe called my dad to ask him about marrying me. The end of that July, Joe and I flew over to visit my Dad and go to the NHRA drag races. While we were there, my dad took Joe aside and I knew it was about my grandma’s ring since my dad had also talked to me about it. My grandma passed away when I was 5 years old and being the only granddaughter, my dad kept the ring in safekeeping for someday when I would maybe want it. We took the ring home with us that weekend, but neither of us had plans for engagement anytime soon. Fast forward to the proposal. Joe knew he wanted to wait a while after we got the ring to ask me, to not be suspicious of course, and knew he wanted to do it sometime this summer but hadn’t planned anything specifically. It worked out that we planned to go to Manito Park, but aside from that it was a whim decision for that day. Here’s the ironic part, he waited a whole year to not be suspicious, but that morning he was wearing a really nice outfit, a nice belt, watch, etc. I was just wearing a comfy outfit to bum around in, not near as nice as his outfit. I just assumed he wanted to break in a new pair of pants he got, but still was slightly suspicious he didn’t want me to dress up in a nicer outfit with him. Regardless, I didn’t think much of it and was absolutely surprised that day was the day!