It was my first full day in Colorado. So far I had met James’ parents, met a few of his coworkers as he showed me around his workplace, saw Pikes Peak on a clear sunny morning, got to see where James grew up and went to school, and walked around the Garden of the Gods.
Just as I thought that the day was winding down, James suggested that we go for a hike. I was interested, but he was worried that I wouldn’t be used to the elevation yet, so he thought that a short hike might be best. We stopped by his apartment to get some water, a lantern for when it got dark, and a thermos full of coffee. When we arrived at the trailhead, it was just about dusk.
We laughed and talked as we made the short trek to the top. The views were spectacular, we were surrounded by mountains and trees, and the trail was so pretty! Once we reached the top, James led me to the edge of a cliff where we could see the entire city. As the sun finished setting, specks of light began appearing across the horizon. I thought this was it for the night. We shared the coffee we brought, and James turned on the lantern for some extra light.
About fifteen minutes after reaching the top, a tall man appeared out of the trees. It startled me at first because it was dark; I didn’t expect to see anyone on the trail at this time.
"Hi, guys," the man said.
"Hey, man," James replied.
"I didn’t think I’d see anyone up here at this time. I hope you don’t mind. I just, I love this view during this hour. It’s perfect for photos." He pulled out his camera.
"Oh, that’s fine, man."
"Cool. Thanks. I love this spot. Great pictures."
"Yeah, the view is great."
I felt that the exchange was a bit awkward, but maybe we threw the guy off and he really didn’t expect to see people up here.
Then all of a sudden, the tall guy seemed to recognize James.
"Jim, is that you?"
"Oh! Hey, Dan! How’s it going?"
"Oh, it’s great. I didn’t realize it was you at first."
They both laughed and James made a joke about knowing everyone in Colorado Springs. I looked over at the wide expanse of city below us and briefly considered how that was highly unlikely, but it was just a passing thought.
"Hey, while you guys are here, can I get a couple shots of the city with you guys in the foreground? I think I could get some neat pictures. Is that okay?" Dan started climbing down onto the steep cliff edge behind us.
"Yeah, that’s okay man. Go for it. Just tell us what to do," James replied.
"Thanks! You’re fine where you are."
"Tumblr is going to love these," I joked. We laughed. Little did I know! Dan kept snapping pictures as James and I looked over the city.
After a few more minutes James turns to me and says, “Well, since we’re here, I have a question I’d like to ask you.”
Dan camera starts going off like crazy and that’s when I realized what was going on.
"No way," I said.
James got down onto one knee and I was already smiling from ear to ear, "Will you run away with me?"
He could hardly get the entire question out before I exclaimed “Yes, please!”
I kissed him. Dan congratulated us as he kept taking pictures.
Then James held out the box with the ring in it, “So …this is for you.”
"Thanks, but I think you’re supposed to put it in my finger," I said.
"Oh, yeah. I forgot." We laughed as he put the ring on my finger.
It was so beautiful. I didn’t think a piece of jewelry could mean so much to me. James was so thoughtful about it—he chose a ring with a conflict-free diamond that was mined in Canada so I’ll always have a piece of home with me wherever I go.
Dan took a few more pictures of us and congratulated us one more time. It was all just so perfect and unexpected. I couldn’t have imagined a more beautiful engagement. It was one of the best nights of my life and I am so excited to say that I am officially going to marry my best friend!
It’s always so bizarre to think that James is the boy from Tumblr that I started talking to and following back in 2010. Despite having only been with each other in person on three occasions, our relationship is stronger than most of my “real-life” relationships. He is literally the most perfect man for me and the Lord has blessed me so much through him. I love the way that our relationship has unfolded, and I wouldn’t change a thing. Distance has challenged us to know each other in ways that probably would never have come into fruition if we had originally met in person. I truly believe that this union is the work of God Himself, and I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life serving the Lord with the man of my dreams. :)