From Rachel's Perspective: Olivia, Emily, and Kayli were in my bible study and invited me over to their house for games and a movie with some other Aggie Catholic friends. When I arrived, they were plating various games and people kept saying that someone should go pick up John and bring him to hang out. I had the thought, "Who is John? And why can't he drive himself?" After The Greatest Showman started playing and the lights were off, a tall silhouette walked into the room and everyone exclaimed "John!" I couldn't see him because the lights were off, but after the movie ended, he caught me on my way out the door and introduced himself. Her 1st Impression: He is tall, handsome, and has a good handshake. From John's Perspective: A couple weeks before I met Rachel, I was talking with some of my good friends. We were all in a time of singleness and had agreed that the next woman we each dated would have to be someone that was really special. As we put it, meeting her would have to feel like "getting hit by a train". A couple weeks later, after going out to the movies with some friends, I was invited over to my friends' house to watch a movie. I was feeling a little tired but after some good 'ol peer pressure, I agreed to come over. When I walked into the house, it was dark because they were watching a movie. As I entered the living room I recognized all of the silhouettes but one. After getting a glass of water, I made sure to sit in the back corner of the room so I could find out who this mysterious silhouette was. As I looked at Rachel singing along beautifully to "The Greatest Showman", I remembered what my friends and I had talked about a couple weeks earlier. I thought to myself, 'I think she's the train'. His 1st Impression: I felt like I had just got run over by a train...in the best way possible.
The only way to tell this story is to start on the Tuesday before, when I (Rachel) detailed my suspicions to my friend Aubrey between accounting classes (when we totally should have been studying for our exam). I told her I thought he might propose on Saturday because it is his confirmation Saint's feast day so we are going on a date, I had an appointment to get my nails done the day before, he got a haircut that day, and there wasn't a home football game that weekend. I was pretty sure the stars were aligning for it to happen that weekend. However, by Wednesday I was thrown because another couple we are friends with was getting engaged the night before. I thought John wouldn't propose the day after them to allow them to have a weekend in the spotlight. I was very upset as we were praying the novena to St. John Paul II that night because I didn't think he was going to propose then. He never directly denied it, but when I said "I really thought it was going to be this weekend," he definitely implied that it wasn't going to be by responding, "I understand why that is disappointing." On Saturday morning, we went to Lake Bryan for an outdoor Mass in honor of St. John Paul II. Afterwards, we went to get donuts, per Diederich family tradition on confirmation Saint feast days, with my roommate and her boyfriend. Then John dropped me off at my house to get ready for our date. When he picked me up, we recreated our first date: lunch at Piada and a tour of campus. After lunch, we parked at St, Mary's and walked to campus. No more than ten minutes in, I got a blister on my foot and proceeded through the rest of the date barefoot. After seeing campus, we went to Aggie Park to walk around and get ice cream at the new creamery. Then, he went to the bathroom for a really long time, which he blamed on his newly developed lactose intolerance as a cover for communicating with my roommates who were waiting for us at our next stop. On the way to the administration building, I was cluelessly telling him about this photographer on Instagram he should reach out to for when he proposes. Knowing what was coming next, he was trying to convince me to put my shoes back on. You can see in the video that he didn't convince me to re-strap them around my ankle until we were walking up the steps, which was really the first time I was suspicious of anything. Once we get to the top, where we ended our first date, he reached into his pocket and handed me a letter to read out loud. At the end of the letter he wrote, "So, future Saint, I have a question to ask you..." and as I read that, he took the ring box out of his sock, got down on one knee, and popped the question!