(Without dragging away from my becoming a missus story, I just want to say that deciding to leave was a hard decision. I worked with great people, made so many friends, and generally enjoyed going to work every day.)
So, as I started to tell coworkers I was leaving, I also wanted to scream from the roof, and by the way, I'm getting married!!! But, I had to keep the biggest secret of my life to myself. That was hard. Besides Jon, only two other people knew that we were planning to elope, my brother and sister-in-law. We had to tell them because we needed two witnesses. And while Jon was happy with getting two random people from the courthouse, I was not, and wanted to have someone we love as our witness. We also had to make sure who ever we told could keep the secret and wouldn't try to talk us out of it. My brother and sister in law were capable of keeping a secret and quite supportive of the idea of eloping.
Jon also had to go officially ask my father for permission. We may have been taking a non-traditional path towards marriage, but some things are a must, and that was one of them. Unlike most girls, I knew he was asking my dad. It was funny - my family thought they were keeping a secret from me - that Jon was proposing soon - but in fact, we were keeping a bigger secret from them! I believe they call that irony, or maybe even comedy.
We had to figure out what to do to get married at the courthouse in NC. It wasn't difficult, but we did have to put in a little effort. One morning I came in late so I could go get our marriage license with Jon. Another day, I left at lunch to go to a jewelry store and get my ring finger sized. Once we had our ring sizes, Jon ordered our bands. (No diamond for this girl yet. That will *hopefully* be a future anniversary gift.)
Final thing on our list - book a honeymoon. I'll post more on the honeymoon later, but St. Thomas was an easy choice for us because it was one of the only choices for us. We had to stay in US territory since my passport was expired. That doesn't leave many options and so we chose the US Virgin Islands.
After the honeymoon was booked, I waited as each day slowly crawled by. I went shopping for a new dress for the big day, but in the end, couldn't find anything I liked more than a simple white dress that was already hanging in my closet. Is there anything worse than going shopping with then intent to purchase something and leaving with nothing? I think it's in the top ten of horribleness.
On Tuesday, May 15th, our rings arrived. Jon tried to trick me and said they weren't in yet. I wasn't feeling great that day, so I was taking a little nap on the couch when Jon came up next to me. He asked me if I would officially marry him and handed me my wedding band. It was adorable and sweet and even though I was sick, I was a happy girl. In less than three days, I was getting married to my favorite person in the world!
Jon and I after he proposed. Not the cutest picture, but I had to document the moment!