Ice, Ice, Baby?
It was my birthday, December 8, 2011.
I took the day off from work. A mental health day. I can't remember what drama was going on, but something had me upset.
A hard pounding on the door interrupted my phone rant. The delivery guy had a huge display of white calla lillies, hydrangeas etc. and a teddy bear. The card attached stated, "You are beautiful. Be at Navy Pier @ 2 p.m. Happy birthday!"
Did I say it was cold outside? Apparently we were going ice skating.
Neither Phil and I are great on ice. After he called to tell me where to meet him, I asked him why ice skating. Reallly?!! It was cold. Really?!!! I'd rather just catch a movie. Mouthing off as usual.
In his usual calm manner, Phil said, "Just meet me at the Pier," and gave me directions about where to go once I got there.
I was a few minutes late. Parking problems. Expressway was backed up. This is Chicago.
Phil told me that someone would meet me at the entrance to the Winter Wonderfest ballroom.
No one was there. I tried calling, but he didn't pick up. No text response either. I walked around, admiring the lit Christmas trees, toy soldiers, carousels and giant lollipops.
Finally, Phil called and asked me to go back to the door. His co-worker Maura, showed up. She had her camera equipment. She told me that she was on assignment.
Maura escorted me to the ice rink. A guy asked for my shoe size, gave me ice skates and escorted me to just outside the rink.
"Where is Phil?" I asked. Maura told me that he had to take care of something and would join us shortly.
"I hope he's not bringing a cake out here, " I said. "We will both fall for sure."
The rink attendants were all smiles and extremely helpful. Two handsome young men escorted me onto the ice and skated around with me as I got comfortable.
Again, I asked where is Phil. They told me that they saw him earlier and was sure he was on his way.
About 10 minutes passed as they ushered me to different areas of the rink. Finally, they pointed out some obscure decoration that caused me to turn my back on the entrance.
They asked if they could cover my eyes. Now I was becoming annoyed. Where is Phil and why are two guys, albeit handsome, covering my eyes and taking me to the center of the rink.
When we reached the center, they uncovered my eyes. There was Phil, in a tuxedo, on the ice. There must have been a thousand people in there. Everyone stopped and gathered around the rink.
I could hear one woman say "He's about to propose!"
The room went blank. I was trembling. All I could say is "Phil, what are you doing?" All I could see was Phil on his knees.
Phil told me how much I, and our dating journey, meant to him. He wanted us to continue the journey for the rest of our lives.
"I was stunned, and shaking." So many people were taking pictures. Anyone who knows me knows that I hate pictures. I just focused on Phil and what appeared to be a good-sized diamond ring, which sparkled as it caught the ceiling lights and the ice glare.
Phil told me that I didn't say yes.
He is sooo wrong. I said yes. You are the only man I would marry. He didn't hear that though.
Maybe he was nervous.
I hugged him. I kissed him. I asked him if he was supposed to put the rock on my finger.
He put it on. There were yelps, tears and congratulations coming from all around the rink.
Phil had coordinated with the Navy Pier staff. They, and his co-worker, were in on it.
I got my fairytale man, a fairytale proposal, all in the middle of a fairytale Christmas wonderland.
Either I am the luckiest fairytale princess, or God has truly smiled on me.
I think God's got this one.