From Liz: There are few things I think I have gotten really right in this life. Few decisions I look back on and think, “Man, what a good idea Liz. You really nailed that!” I find myself wondering when I do make a good decision, how did I get there? What caused me to see the light and actually take a step towards a happy and healthy adult life? I’ve noticed in the last year and a half I have made more “good” decisions than in the previous 32 years before. So I decided to try and figure out where I made the turn. When did I suddenly wake and become this smart, super adult??
October 4th, 2014. That is the day. I heard a knock on my hotel room door and when I opened it I saw the most beautiful woman my eyes had ever seen. I know that sounds cheesy and like I stole it from a romance novel, but unfortunately my brain sees love exactly like a romance novel. I am actually the cheesiest romantic I’ve ever met. You want sappy love music (Phil Collins, of course) and a dance in the kitchen? Got it. You want me to pick you up on the beach and spin you around after I write our initials in the sand? Done. Rose petals, champagne and a bubble bath? It’s yours. So, needless to say, when I opened that door my heart skipped a beat, and I knew I was going to be with this woman forever. At this point you may be wondering, why is this beautiful woman randomly knocking on my hotel room door? Is she the maid? Is she lost? Well there is only one obvious reason she was there, and that reason is LOVE. Ok, ok, I’ll stop. But really she was there to photograph the wedding of one my closest friends and her bridal party, in which I happened to be the Best Woman. So yes. Stop rolling your eyes. My romantic, over the top words are true. She was there because of love. She was to be with the “suits,” while the other photographer was with the “dresses.”
Wendy came in like a tornado. Her dimples stretched for what felt like a mile, and her eyes were unreal. Like really and truly I thought they were fake. Contacts perhaps? When I asked if they were, I got a huge smile and a side eye followed by a “No, girl. These are all me.” I never had a chance. There is no other word to describe her than contagious. I could ramble on and on about her and that amazing wedding, but I will sum it up for you like this: I stared, she stared. I asked her to dance, she put her number in my phone. I begged her to come to the after party, she did. I asked her out on a date, she said yes. Three days later I took her to dinner. The rest, as they say, is history.
On December 12th, 2015, one year and two months after our first date, I surprised Wendy by asking her to marry me on a pier overlooking the Chesapeake. We had gone to a beautiful resort hotel in Cambridge, MD because she had a wedding to shoot. While she was at the wedding I welcomed friends and family from near and far and set them up in a lovely secret location, while I waited at the end of the longest pier known to man. When she arrived back to the hotel she found a dress and a box waiting for her on the bed. The box lead her to another hidden box, which lead her to another hidden box, which lead her to me. As you can imagine, as a true romantic, I had the rose petals and meaningful, slow music and champagne ready to go. She was surprised but also not, because just like me she knew we were meant to be together and this was the logical next step. After she said yes, I took her to the secret room full of people who love us and we celebrated well into the night. When we finally went to bed around 3 am I knew my decision was the most adult of them all. Any girl who can hang with me and my friends that late and still think I am amazing needs to be my wife. Immediately.
As we plan for November 5th, 2016, we continue to grow and learn about each other. She is truly my best friend. The happiness I have found in Wendy cannot be measured in words. She is my partner in all aspects of this life and I am beyond grateful that I opened that door and heard Phil sing to me as she walked past. It was the best moment of my life… At least until November.
Photos courtesy of Carly Fuller Photography