Jesse was out of town last month during both Valentine's Day and our one year anniversary, so he planned a special weekend for just the two of us this past weekend. I got out of work early on Friday and headed to the nearby hotel to meet him. Our room was gorgeous; you don't really find spacious hotel rooms in Manhattan.
I had been long awaiting this weekend to relax with him, and was so excited I had bought a new dress and even painted my nails (which happens rarely). I got all glammed up and we decided to go to Satsko's for a glass of wine before dinner.
The evening turned into how it always has for us - continual conversation that never lulls or lacks. Jesse had made reservations at Lil Frankie's, a great Italian place that he had taken me to on our first date. We were seated at a secluded corner table in the dimly lit restaurant. It became nostalgic for me and our dinner fodder turned into reminiscing about meeting each other and our first date. He said something about how beautiful I was; how he never thought he'd be with somebody so - and I got all teary, because he said it with such sincere wistfulness in his voice.
While we ate and sipped our wine, we started talking about how confused I had been on our first date. At the time, he was recording an album and would be leaving New York in a month, which he brought up. I took this to mean that once that month was over, this new romance would be as well. Apparently, he was being sarcastic. I was confused, but later on our first date I mentioned how I had never really traveled or vacationed with a significant other, and he told me that I was "smart and pretty, and I'm sure you'll find somebody to travel with." Again, apparently joking - but after that, I was no longer confused, I was sure he just wanted to hang out for a month and be on his way. While remembering all this, Jesse recalled walking out of Lil Frankie's that night totally happy that he had essentially made clear he saw in me a girlfriend, and I walked out thinking here's a band dude who just wants to have a girl for a month. A few days later he erased any doubts I had.
On Friday night he reiterated how he didn't want me to be confused anymore. While we waited for dessert, he began to explain how happy he was. He asked me if I was happy - I told him I'd never known this brand of happy, it was so good. I reached for my wine, and he says, "Well, can I ask you one more question." I'm sipping and not even looking at him, and I just nod. And then he holds my free hand and gets down on his knee and my other hand goes to my mouth and I go into some sort of shock when I realize what he's doing.
"Will you be with me forever?" he says, "Will you marry me, please?"
I'm crying. Nodding. Saying yes. He's nervous (note the "please," apparently not part of his original plan, ha).
He doesn't hear me say yes - perhaps the hand covering my mouth? My sobs? My mind trying to function given the complete and utter surprise of the moment??
He says, "I have a ring!"
He had been holding the ring in his other hand, but it was underneath the table and I couldn't see it.
"I said yes! A million times yes!"
And then I saw the ring and it was perfect. Of course. (When Kelly saw it the next day she concurred how marvelously "Me" it was.) As he slipped the ring onto my finger I was definitely shaking in happiness. We hugged each other tightly for a few minutes. I think I may have said something like, "Me? Really?"
When we finally paid attention to where we were, we realized that our dessert had been served, along with two glasses of champagne. On our way out (and to the hotel to call everybody), a few employees of Lil Frankie's congratulated us, and one of them commented that we were the first Lil Frankie's engagement.
He always makes sure it's special; and that's just one of the millions of reasons I said yes.