Many couples spend a long amount of time planning their dream wedding together. On top of that, the stereotypical bride-to-be spends years thinking about her wedding, sometimes before even meeting her future husband. If your girlfriend is anything like me, she's already built a Pinterest board full of color schemes, dream dresses, and pictures of cute autumnal barn-like venues with chandeliers hanging from the rafters. In her mind, it's going to be perfect. She's also, at the very least, going to be picturing how things are going to play out, how they're going to look. But believe it or not, there might be something she thinks about equally as much, if not more: her dream proposal.
Don't get me wrong -- the wedding is definitely important, but everyone will be there. She won't have to tell the story of your wedding over and over to her mom, her best friends, and her second cousins, because they will most likely have been there to experience it. On the other hand, the proposal is going to make for a magical story that she'll be telling everyone for the rest of your lives. It's the moment those months of meticulous repins and reblogs change from fantasizing about the wedding to actually planning it openly. You don't want a lifetime of her making a stinkface every time she reminisces about the day you first put a ring on it. Here are a few of my personal preference for how I envision my future proposal going down:
- Please ask my parents' permission first. They aren't demanding this -- if we're already this close to marriage, they probably already love you because their opinions are important to me. This is not because of any religious belief. I just think it's nice. Plus, my dad has a beautiful vintage ring that would make a great engagement ring, and it's already been sized for me. Just saying.
- Make sure my nails have been recently painted, or at least that I haven't been chewing on my cuticles. I'm gonna be texting pictures of that ring on my finger to everyone I've ever met for the next six months, so I can't have my nails looking whack in the upper corner of my Instagrams.
- Make sure I've washed my hair that day and that I'm not breaking out or anything funky. You know I always feel "off" when I skip a shower and you do not want to be doing this on one of those days.
- If I'm going to go through all that effort of being pretty, please get someone to photograph this beautiful moment. My hair does not do this amazing wavy thing every day -- let's commemorate it forever.
- Please don't ask me at home. I'm not saying I want a huge flash mob downtown, but it would be nice if wherever we are has more significance than our couch. If possible, the place we met would make an ideal location.
- Speaking of flash mobs, please don't plan some drawn-out production. Once I know what's happening, I'm gonna want that ring on my finger as fast as possible. Don't make me wait too long or I'll stop enjoying it and just get impatient.
- On a similar subject, while it would be super convenient to have everyone there -- especially if I'm one of the few people left in the world who doesn't have unlimited texting -- this is really about us. Don't invite my parents, your parents, out-of-town relatives, or either of our co-workers -- not even the cool ones! Kanye may have done it but, but we're going to see all these people in six to 12 months at the wedding, so no need for them to fly in twice.
- I know we're a jokey couple, but our penchant for trolling really doesn't apply here. Do not trick me into thinking you are hurt. Do not scare me in any way. Don't fake your own death, or make me think one of us is getting arrested, or pretend our plane is going to crash, or anything else that's going to make me want to punch you before I say "yes."
- Don't hide the ring in food. You know how much I love eating and honestly, that's just not gonna end pretty, so just forget that idea.
Please keep in mind that these are my personal preferences; a lot of them may not apply to you. I can't stress the importance of open communication enough -- if you're close enough with someone that you're about ready to marry them, you should be able to talk openly about your preferences and expectations. Maybe your girl totally disagrees with my list. Maybe she doesn't care about how her nails look, but definitely doesn't want a ring tucked into her dessert. Maybe she doesn't even want a proposal. But you might not know any of this if you don't ask. So, if nothing else, I hope my list can serve as an amusing jumping-off point to what might be one of the most important conversations in your relationship.