I AM GOING TO MARRY MY HIGH SCHOOL SWEETHEART!!
And I said YES.
Surprised?? So was I! Here is the story.
Andrew signed up to do the New Orleans Half Ironman race for his second year in a row, and we had been excited about our upcoming trip to NOLA for some time. We had a great time at the race last year and we just couldn't wait to go back for another fun weekend. So, Friday morning after we dropped Cosmo off at the vet, we headed to Jackson. We hopped out of one car and into another and drove down to NO with Andrew's parents. The four of us enjoyed walking around on Friday night and had a great dinner at Deanie's. On Saturday morning, we met up with our friends Alex and Lianne and we all took a trolley ride through the beautiful Garden District. We had lunch and went to UNO to set up the bike transition for the race. We went to Palm Sunday mass at the beautiful St. Patrick's church and then went to dinner for Andrew's pre race meal. The trip had been great, relaxed, and fun. I was staying in the same hotel room with Andrew and his parents for these two nights before the race and they never even gave me a HINT or did anything that would give me a reason to be suspicious of anything. So....Sunday morning comes, we wake up at 5:30am, it is a typical race day routine. We have it down pat by now. We put on our Team Harris hats and shirts, got our coffee and our cameras, and headed out to the race to cheer Andrew on. Nothing out of the ordinary.
The race was underway (after a very disappointing swim cancellation). My parents were planning on coming down to New Orleans on Sunday to support Andrew. I called them and told them they needed to hurry up and get down there because the swim got cancelled and Andrew's finish time would be earlier. So they headed on down, and I never thought twice about them coming for any other reason than to support Andrew. They have come to some of his races before and it just didn't send up any red flags for me...
So, we are all standing there in Jackson Square, watching for Andrew to come running towards the finish line. Eventually we spot him coming down the shoot, giving high fives to everyone on the side lines and making quite a grand finish. I raced down to the shoot exit to see him and congratulate him on all of his hard work that he had just done for 4 hours and 48 minutes. As I expected, he was pretty winded and needed to sit down and drink some gatorade. I know how Andrew works and usually he just needs to be left alone for a few minutes after a race so I was just going to step back and give him his time. But my mom had other plans! She grabbed my camera from me and told me to go over to Andrew so she could get our picture together. I told her that he really doesnt like to be bothered and that we needed to wait a little while to get pictures. She absolutely insisted that I go over there, so I did. Andrew was already bent down on the ground, because hey, he just did an ironman and he needed to take a breather! At some point during all of this, his sweet, secret-keeping mother went over and slipped him the ring. When I went over to him, he held the ring up and asked me to marry him! The rest is a blur. I am pretty sure I said yes...we have it all on video so we might need to go back and watch it closely just to be sure :)
Anyhow...WE ARE GETTING MARRIED!! I have a beautiful ring on my finger that I still cannot stop staring at, and I am counting the days until May 19th, 2012 when I get to marry my best friend and the love of my life. I simply could not be happier or more blessed.
I had to keep a secret until Monday night because I wanted to surprise all of my sorority sisters at my candlelight. I have never kept such a big secret in my life! I saw several of my friends that day, and even spent hours with Martha Ann and I didn't let anything slip! I was pretty proud of myself...and it was so worth it to see the suprised smiles and tears on my friend's faces when I blew out that candle! Priceless memories.
Here are a few of my favorite pictures from our special day!
I am so appreciative of all the excitement and happiness that our friends and family have showered us with over the past week. You all mean so much to us and I thank you for your love and support!
Let the wedding planning begin!!