Sarah the Blogging Bride
By Sarah Lebo
For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Sarah and I have been working with Caitlin at Just Be The Bride since December. It doesn’t take too long to find out that I love weddings and that I am obsessed with every aspect of them and working with brides gives me the perfect opportunity to make my hobby apart of my daily job. Well a recent event has led me to feed my passion of weddings in an even more personal way. Exactly one month ago, today, my boyfriend of nine and a half years proposed to me on a jetty on the beach of Cape May, NJ. It was the most amazing and special day of my life.
Before I tell you the most awesome proposal story you’ll ever hear, let me tell you how our relationship started in the first place. I met John Wesley Fallon, or as everyone calls him, Wes, the summer before we entered eighth grade. He is only 5 months older than me so we went into and left high school at the same time. He lived in a town right next to mine so we, unfortunately, did not attend the same school but we met through our best friends who were dating at the time, Erica and Preston. The short version of the story is that Wes was asking Preston if Erica had any friends that he might like so they looked over Preston’s friend list on AIM (remember that?) and Wes chose my screen name simply because it made him laugh. It was sourpickles773, by the way. I was not allowed to date at the time since I was only 14 years old but Wes was determined to keep me close and although we didn’t see each other much, Wes asked me out that summer and we talked all the time. We also had our immature dating moment when we broke up for a few months and while I dated an older boy from my own school, we continued to talk on the phone every day. Wes waited patiently and before long that older boy and I broke up and on December 27, 2003 he asked me to be his girlfriend for the second and last time.
We dated all through high school, attended all dances and proms together, and we were there for each other’s graduations. A year later Wes was accepted into the United States Coast Guard and after boot camp training in Cape May for two months, he was sent to Portsmouth, VA on a cutter that went on missions, sometimes lasting 3 months. After two years of long distance, he finally came home and got stationed right in Atlantic City and has been here since. We both knew we would get married and have a future together and we talked about it once in a while but I wanted to wait until I was finished my bachelor’s degree to be married so that I could put more attention into our marriage. Wes tells me that if the decision were up to him alone, he would have married me years ago.
So now onto the proposal…Being in the Coast Guard Wes has received many opportunities and one of the most recent is the recommendation by his chief and C.O. to become a U.S.C.G. officer. The process to becoming an officer is a very long journey and involves many thing, including an interview. A few months ago Wes called me to tell me he had this interview already, which is very uncommon and he needed my help since they wanted to talk to someone who is close to him to find out about his moral character and his home life. Me, being a civilian and knowing nothing about the processes and procedures of the C.G., agreed to help and was so proud to know that he got an interview and that the process was moving along so quickly. The day of the interview was fast approaching and Wes was showing his anxiety and explaining that everything had to be perfect, even my wardrobe for the day. I understood that this was a huge deal to him and that even though he had always trusted me before and never questioned my choice in clothing, I have to admit I was a little confused at his attention to detail, down to how he wanted my hair to look. Knowing that this was an important step for him and towards our future I wore the dress he wanted, did my hair the way he wanted and now I was beginning to get nervous. Although his C.O. sent me a letter explaining the need for my presence I had no clue as to what questions I’d be asked, let alone the person asking me these unknown questions.
April 27th finally came and Wes and I both were beginning to feel the pressure. I met him at the A.C. station very early in the morning and then we drove to Cape May together, where the interview was to take place. While stalling at Wawa, he told me that his interview place and time changed and that now we were to go to the Cape May beach and he had a gut feeling that he would be pinned an officer right there on the spot. Although I had a small suspicion before this point, I pushed it to the back of my mind and told myself it wasn’t about me but about Wes and this great opportunity. Now I was a little weary but for the sake of keeping up the charade, I went along with it. We finally got to the beach and walked out onto the jetty. The only other people on the beach were families and people taking their morning stroll. This is where Wes reminded me that I’d have the view of the ocean for the rest of my life and he bent down on one knee and asked me to marry him. Of course, I said yes and couldn’t be happier that he picked the beach, my favorite place in the world, to propose!
Afterwards, we drove to the center of town where he had a horse and carriage waiting to give us a ride around town. After that we headed back home with me anxiously wanting to tell everyone I knew! Wes, of course, knew this so we headed to my church where my mom was helping with a Saturday function, or so I thought. When we pulled into the parking lot and saw cars of people I knew did not attend my church, I realized something was up. We walked in and all of my friends and family yelled surprise! Then, to my confusion, Wes raised my hand up and yelled WE’RE ENGAGED! Wes invited everyone to a surprise graduation party since I was graduating two weeks later and then surprised the guests with the engagement! And the icing on this sweet cake was the secret video and pictures of the proposal he showed me a week later, done by, my friend, Jordan Brian! As you can see he is a clever and thoughtful guy and I know for sure that I am the lucky one.
All of that to tell you that for the next 11 months, I will be blogging all about my wedding planning adventures, the ups and downs, the challenges and the decisions and of course the point of view of a bride/wedding planner and her groom. I hope you enjoy this series and I know that I will learn a lot and hope to pass on my new found knowledge to you.