Jake & Jess

I grew up in a house with 3 brothers: Nick, Evan, and Steve (really my first cousin, but a brother to me). Given the testosterone level in our house while we were growing up, my mom got her fair share of intellectual discussion- philosophy, politics, sports… and farts. Fortunately for her, we never made it around to talking about shoes, weddings, and Kardashians (or whoever the 90’s version of them were).

Let’s fast forward about 15 years. By the time Nick & Amanda got married Mom was getting the hang of the feminine conversation thing (thank you, Amanda). Jess and I were dating at this time and one particular topic that they always talked about was shoes. They discussed shoes a lot. I can’t tell you too much other than that regarding the content of their conversations… I tend to zone out. However, one particular pair that they talked about were the pair that Grandmom Sutera wore on her wedding day (they are over 6 decades old and in pretty good shape, but are still stylish by today’s standards…a lot like Grandmom). Because Grandmom and Jess are still waiting for their growth spurts and are stuck at the same size (5.5) my mom always insisted that Jess needed to try these shoes on (hint hint).

I turned the corner toward our kitchen in our apartment, and David was there with the ring, ready to propose. To say that I was shocked, is an understatement. To see the love of my life down on one knee, giving me his heart forever…is something that I will never get out of my head. I am so unbelievably excited to say “I DO” and spend forever with my best friend.

When I bought Jess’ ring, I was really struggling with how I wanted to ask her to marry me. With a little help from mom, we put a plan together. This is how it all went down (cue Mission Impossible theme in your head):

On the 3rd of July every summer, Conshohocken shoots off fireworks from Sutcliffe Park. Since my Grandmom’s back yard faces the park she hosting a party on that day every year since I can remember. Jess has been there the last 2 years so nothing seemed all that different going into the night. I did, however invite her parents this year (I asked for their permission that morning). On that night, Jess was working until 5PM and everyone who knew about our plan was anxiously anticipating her arrival. She showed up at about 8PM and I greeted Jess, Greg, and Zory at their car and helped them carry the trey of mac n’ cheese Zory made for the party. Jess made her rounds to say ‘hi’ to everyone there and I did my best to introduce her parents to everyone at the party. After about an hour, we (Jess, Greg, Zory, Mom, and I) finally sat down at a table to eat together. After kicking mom under the table a few times, she finally delivered her line, “Hey Jess, when we were getting ready for the party we found Grandmom’s old wedding shoes. You’ve got to try them on. Jake, go get the shoes- they are sitting on the cedar chest in the house”. With an Oscar winning eye roll, I got up from the table and went into the house to get the shoes. As I walked out of the house with the box my heart was pumping. I don’t think I’ve ever been happier or nervous in my life. Jess was somehow positioned perfectly in the middle of everyone. As I approached her, I knelt down to “put the shoes on her feet” ;). When I opened the box and showed Jess the ring, I kept it simple, “Jessica… will you marry me?”

… See you all on October 28th (she said yes)!

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