Up early on Friday I had no idea what was in store for me. It seemed like any other day, wake up early to get to the airport to go visit Alex’s family for the weekend. Oh how wrong I was.
I met Alex on September 19th and from the first moment I saw his amazing dimples I knew my heart was in trouble. After only three dates I knew I loved him. It was so hard to keep those three precious words to myself every time I saw him. Thankfully I didn’t have to wait too long to tell him. It was nearly a month since our first meeting that I found myself writing “I love you” on a big poster board to show him when I picked him up from the airport. My sign said “guess what” on the front and then when I flipped it over it said “I love you”. I was so nervous I held the sign upside down like a dork. I was shaking and my heart was racing as he came down the escalator and wrapped me up in his arms and got close to my ear and told me he loved me. (I cry even now thinking of this moment).
Since then there have been many I love yous said between us, each one more meaningful than the last because I honestly do love him more every single day.
We started talking about marriage probably two months into our romance and for the first time in my life it felt tangible, not like some abstract idea I had as a little girl dreaming of wearing a beautiful white dress. I knew I wanted Alex to be my husband. I’ve prayed about this knowledge every night since then.
Fast forward through 7 months of adventures, laughter, meeting each others parents, traveling, amazing dates, and most of all overflowing love. It was Friday the 18th of April. We arrived around 10 am to Brisbane and Carolyn picked us up from the airport and brought us to the house. Big hugs from Con, Bryce and Joel and the day had begun. I asked what the plan was for the day and Alex said we really didn’t have one. I ended up going to the gym with the boys (getting kicked off spotting duty for Alex “trumped by brothers”) and then had a dip in the pool. Alex said we were all going out for a nice family dinner since the boys were leaving on a trip Saturday morning so I went to get ready. I had just bought a new dress and was excited to wear it for the first time.
After asking Alex if I should wear my hair straight or curly and promptly ignoring his choice, I finished curling my hair and it was time to go to dinner. All day I wondered if tonight was the night Alex would propose to me, but every time I let the thought creep into my mind I immediately forced it away. Plus Alex was far to calm to be planning something special.
We had to take two cars to dinner since we wouldn’t all fit in one. Alex and I took one car and the rest of the family drove ahead of us since Alex said he didn’t know exactly where he was going. In the car we listened to music (Alex mostly listened to me singing music) and held hands as we always do but I felt anxious. I looked over at Alex, still calm….in my mind I said “Abby stop nothing is happening it’s just dinner”.
As we got to Mount Coot-tha we caught up with his parents who were doing and u-turn but I was in charge of google maps and my map was telling me to keep going up the mountain. So we did. By this point I knew nothing was going to happen and it was just going to be a family dinner. Why did I ever let the thought into my head that it could be something more? We ended up going all the way up the mountain just to come back down the other side to find the restaurant. We took the long way.
Parking was mayhem and we just couldn’t seem to find a spot. I saw Joel waiting for us and he let Con know we were having trouble. So down comes Alex’s dad to save the day by kicking us out of the car and going to find parking himself so I wouldn’t have to walk up a big hill in heels. This was the cement for my mind that it was not happening tonight because why would Con miss it?
We walked up to the restaurant with Joel and then stopped in front of a fountain. Joel pulled out a camera. There was a sign that Alex pointed out to me it was shiny and silver and had the words “guess what” on it. (Just like I had done when I told him I loved him) He said “Abby guess what?” And I said “what? what? what’s going on???” I felt my voice shaking. Then he turned the sign around and it said “Will You Marry Me?” Time stopped.
My guy then got down on his knee and I told him to shut up. Thankfully he pressed on and said the most beautiful words (none of which I heard). The first words that my brain could process were “I want to continue our journey as husband and wife. Will you marry me?” As tears were streaming down my face I said yes and Alex slipped the most beautiful engagement ring on THAT finger. I kissed my fiancé for the first time and it was magic.
His brother got the entire moment on video. which when my family has seen it and my Dad edits it I will happily share. We walked up stairs and I got to hug my soon to be family for the first time. Still crying of course and shaking and in disbelief of the events that just took place. We ate dinner and for some reason the food tasted better than it ever had before. His aunt and uncle and cousin were there and the center piece to our table was a bunch of my favorite flowers (sunflowers) and in the middle were the American and Australian flags.
We called my mom around 5:30 am Miami time because I just couldn’t bear not sharing this with her immediately. I was engaged to the love of my life and the only thing that could have made the night better was having my family there.
With everything that happened on Friday I am still in shock. I am praising God for putting Australia in my heart a year ago. I didn’t know then but he was leading me to my husband. This weekend is not only special because I am engaged to marry the love of my life but also because Jesus died for our sins. He made the ultimate sacrifice so we could experience salvation. Alex is a daily reminder of how faithful God is and knowing how much Alex loves me it will always blow me away that God loves me so much more I can’t even comprehend.
This is such an exiting time in my life. Alex and I will be making our home in Australia for the time being, but who knows where The Lord may take Us. Wow we are an us and a we! I can’t believe it. We have felt overwhelmed with the love and support from everyone around us. Thank you for the continued prayers. Let the wedding planning begin!
December 28, 2014 I get to marry the man God made for me and become, Abigail Elizabeth Boukogiannis!
Happy Easter everyone! He has risen!