Proposal Planning

From One Groom-to-Be to the Next: What It Was Really Like To Plan A Marriage Proposal

by Katherine Callaghan

For my fiancé and I, we started planning our future together months before he popped the question. After he got down on one knee and asked me the most important question of my life, I wanted him to tell me all the details about the proposal planning process.

For many couples, the proposal itself only lasts a couple of minutes, but those few minutes require endless research, planning, and saving from your significant other. I’ve always been intrigued by what goes through a man’s mind when he’s proposing and the moments leading up to it. How emotional is it to ask someone to marry you? The night of my proposal my fiancé told me everything, and I didn’t think it was possible, but I fell even more in love with him (ladies, if you haven’t asked your man about his proposal planning process, trust me, it’s bound to give you all the feels).

This week, instead of doing a From One Bride-to-Be to the Next story (don’t worry, it’ll be back next week!), I’ve decided to switch things up a bit. In this From One Groom-to-Be to the Next story, I’ve asked my fiancé, Mike, to share his side of the proposal and all the emotions that went through his mind the days and months leading up to the big night.

How to keep the biggest secret

The worst part of planning a proposal is the part no one seems to mention. You’re proposing to someone who is your best friend, I mean, we’re talking about the one person in your life you tell everything. Bad day at work, you tell her. Get a compliment from your boss, you tell her. New haircut, you tell her. Planning to ask her to marry you, who do you tell?

You spend so much time and effort trying to make it perfect and it feels like it consumes you. It’s the only thing you think of and the only thing you want to talk about. Yet, you can’t tell her. You talk to everyone else about it, but really, the one person you want to tell, you can’t ask.

Planning the proposal

While you try and keep the biggest secret of your life, you distract yourself by creating this amazing proposal plan. Is it really great though? Or is it lame? After much internal debate, you decide it’s your plan and you’re sticking to it. No pressure or anything, it’s just going to be an event you both remember and talk about for the rest of your lives. Again, no pressure.

You want to ensure you have all your bases covered and that it is going to be perfect for the woman you love. It starts by getting the plan to fruition and making sure everything is in place. The days and months leading up to the proposal are going to be consumed by neverending questions and doubts. How many things have to go according to plan for this to unfold? Who needs to be where so she doesn’t get suspicious? Do I need a backup plan if the weather bombs out? What if I forget something? But seriously, where am I  going to hide the ring I spent months designing and saving for? (I wasn’t kidding when I said endless).

Speak from the heart

Now it’s time to figure out what you’re going to say to her when the moment finally arrives. You Google it. It’s all garbage. It’s all b.s. that sounds like it’s out of a lame Hallmark Christmas special. Maybe that garbage works for someone else, but this is you and your moment with her. She will remember the words that you say to her forever (guaranteed she asks you to repeat your speech–we all dread it but there’s no escape and honestly there are worse things in life). So, somehow, you need to say the perfect lines in the highest pressure moment and make them feel genuine. The best advice? Speak from the heart. Google doesn’t know your relationship. It doesn’t know your feelings and it doesn’t need to. She needs to know your feelings. So say what’s in your heart. However, do yourself a favor and practice. A lot. Because that moment will happen so much faster than you can ever imagine.

The moment has come

You arrive at the finish line. You created a plan of how to propose and you hope it’s a story you will both remember forever. You’ve kept the secret from your best friend, and now you hope and pray everything goes according to plan. You’re in the right place at the right time with photographers strategically placed and the ring in your hand. Now it’s time to get her in position, drop to one knee, and utter the four words that will change your lives forever: “Will you marry me?”