Engagement Photo 1Christy and I have had a very blessed relationship. For starters, we met in a very special way. We each had a profile on a dating website, and after we swapped contact information, we ended up talking on the phone for seven-and-a-half hours the first night! Neither of us had ever been on the phone for half that long before, so we both knew that we had just found something special.

Another blessing we have is shared interests. Christy and I both love the outdoors. We have always enjoyed walking, hiking, and swimming together. We also love to kayak. There is a beautiful lake near Litchfield, IL where Christy and I get together to kayak. We scheduled a kayak date in early June, and she brought up her two single-seat kayaks. We paddled around Yaeger Lake for a few hours, enjoying the scenery, the wildlife, and the exercise. We even saw a bald eagle perched on a branch by its nest! As far as afternoon kayak trips go, this was almost as good as it gets.

As dates go, it wasn’t my favorite. There was something missing. We were in separate boats going separate directions at separate speeds… there was very little unity. I didn’t tell her about the issue, since it wasn’t very important at the time. However, that day, as we pulled the boats onto the shore, I decided how I was going to propose…

A few months later, Christy and I went to southern Wisconsin together for a short vacation with my family. We stayed in a cottage on a gorgeous little lake. Early Monday morning, Christy and I went kayaking again. This time, we were in a two-seat kayak. We launched the boat into Rock Lake and began paddling.

Right away, we ran into some trouble—the boat was turning a little to one side without our help. We had to talk about the problem and compensate to overcome it. We also had to get used to one another. With some effort and communication, it didn’t take long before we were paddling at the same speed, going in the same direction, and working toward the same goal. There were even times when, stroke for stroke, our paddles were perfectly synchronized. We loved it!

Engagement Photo 2After we had circled the whole lake, we pulled the kayak up onto the shore and walked to breakfast at a local café. When we finished eating, we walked through the park downtown. We quietly strolled along, enjoying the morning air. After a while, I sat down with her on a bench and we began talking about that morning’s kayak trip, and about how much we had both enjoyed it.

Finally, I confessed to her about how I had disliked the kayak date a few months before. I compared the two trips, explaining how odd it felt to be working separate like we had been in Yaeger Lake, but also how wonderful it felt to be working together like we had been in Rock Lake. I told her that the unity we had experienced that morning was like the unity I wanted to have with her for the rest of our lives—through both the easy times and the struggles, we’ll always work together to get through.

I knelt down on one knee and presented the ring. “I love you. Will you marry me?”

She was nodding yes before I said “Wil…” and she shouted, “Of course I will!”

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Last updated February 5, 2017