Wednesday, August 31, 2016

The Monkey Buddha is Engaged!

I don't post a lot about my personal life on this blog, but a very important event happened recently that has brought me much joy.

While on vacation with my family in the Poconos, I proposed to my girlfriend of 2 1/2 years. Although we've been dating for a couple years, Loretta was my close friend for much longer... and for most of that time, I had a not-so-secret crush on her. Everyone wondered why we weren't together, including both of our parents. Looking back she says she just wasn't ready, and perhaps I really wasn't either.

However, once she opened her heart to me, our love skyrocketed and we've become inseparable. We're both in our 30's now and have had many relationships in our past. I think this breadth of experience has given us the wisdom to really understand what we want in a relationship. We wake up every day full of love and gratitude for each other, and truly cherish our connection.

So, after secretly planning for about a month, I found an antique ring that was exactly what both of us had talked about previously. I was looking at all kinds of different places, but was pulled by some unexplainable force into a particular shop, where the ring jumped out at me. I excitedly sent pictures to my Mom, who told me to wait a day so she could see it and so I could think about it. The next day, she came with me and said it was very pretty, but we still went to look at a couple more places. Nothing else caught my eye, & I was pretty determined to buy that ring... so I did! After taking it to a jeweler to get verified, resized, and refinished, I was ready.

While we were on vacation in the mountains, I had planned on proposing on the day of our 2 1/2 year anniversary, which was on a Sunday. Of course, things never go exactly as you plan them. Loretta got violently ill from food poisoning or a stomach bug on that day, which put a hold on my plan. Thankfully, she has a strong immune system & fought the sickness of by Monday, when we went running and she was back to eating her healthy meals.

So, on Monday night after we ate dinner with my family, I suggested we go to down to the lake to watch the sunset. She asked if anyone else wanted to come down, but I brushed it off & said they'd join us later. I'd been slightly anxious, but I have pretty good self-control, so I was pretty cool up to this point. Once I actually got down to the dock with her, I started to get nervous.

After talking for a little bit, I told her I had a little anniversary gift for her. She looked at me kind of funny & said "...but P,... I don't have anything for you!" I told her it wasn't just a gift, it was a commitment- my life that I want to share with her. I took the ring out and she was stunned, and went to hold it before saying, "Yes! Yes, of course."

We shared some time alone on the dock watching the sun setting over the lake, then we went back up to the house to break the news to my family & share a toast with everyone. My sister came back down to the lake with us to take some pictures to remember the moment.

We, and our families, are very happy and excited to celebrate this important event in our lives. It is something that means so much to me, and I wanted to share my happiness here.

Paul Micarelli & Loretta De Stefano
Enagaged 8-15-2016
Big Bass Lake, Poconos PA

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