We were quickly packing for our trip to Tennessee. It was the kind of trip where you take mainly cycling gear, a couple of cozy pants and sweatshirts and not much else. Our mission: to romp around the back roads of Eastern Tennessee and do some secret training. Benjamin had spent winter there years ago in preparation for the 1996 Olympic trials. He discovered smooth roads, little to no traffic and lots of amazing terrain.
We were in our pajamas, filling our suitcases and he asked if I had room for something. I looked up and in his hand was a little box. A little box with a big ring inside. He got down on one knee and asked me to marry him.
I'd been dreaming of this moment for a while. Not sure when it was going to happen, and in some ways okay with if it never happened. I knew my love for him was beyond measure, beyond conditions, beyond limitations. I feel so lucky and blessed to feel this way about someone, about Benjamin.
So when that little box had a beautiful ring inside, accompanied by a proposal by the man of my dreams, I flew over the moon. And turned beet red.
"I had all these ideas in mind. But I couldn't wait any longer."
Floating on cloud nine, I couldn't stop smiling. If there were ever a moment I could stop time, this would be it. A moment full of much love, appreciation, and adoration.
In fact, I don't think I've stopped beaming.