There aren’t many moments in life that I know I will remember, without a doubt, forever. So many things happen on a day-to-day basis that it’s hard to know what events will stick in my mind, never leaving my memory bank, influencing decisions I make from then on.

However, this past weekend, one of those unforgettable moments occurred. Matt, my boyfriend of five years, asked me to spend the rest of my life with him.  

The question in itself wasn’t a huge surprise, but that’s because we both knew it was coming. We’d talked about the idea of marriage for the past couple of years, but took our time in getting to the actual decision (much to my mother’s dismay). We weren’t slow in our decision because we were uncertain about our love for each other. We just wanted to make sure when we made the choice to spend the rest of our lives together, we didn’t do so lightly. Just about every adult mentor I have has been divorced at least once, and I didn’t have any interest in following in their footsteps. So we took our time in deciding what was right and when, and in December 2018, Matt asked my stepdad for his blessing to marry me.

A couple of months later, Matt asked if I would like to be a part of the engagement ring picking. He figured he could go on his own and be stressed out and worried about his choice, or he could include me in the decision and it would be more enjoyable for the both of us. He was right. And after a lot of back and forth with several jewelers, learning the 4Cs of diamonds and being so overwhelmed to the point where making a decision felt nearly impossible, we met the right ring designer and found the right ring. Once it was ordered, Matt told me I was cut off from any more information, and I would have to wait until he was down on one knee proposing to see the ring again.

At the start of June, Matt planned a weekend for us in Aspen. We spent three years of our relationship living in that town, and I’d been there for two years prior to that. Going up there to visit was always fun, but always came with many social obligations to see family and friends. But he told me I wasn’t allowed to plan anything for the trip, which is hard for an incessant planner like me who always wants to see and include everybody. I figured the question was coming, but not seeing friends or family while we were there was a concern. In a small mountain town, it’s nearly impossible not to run into just about everyone you know. I was sure we would come across someone that would be upset that we didn’t let them know we were in town. Still, I acquiesced to Matt’s request, trying to be open to whatever he had planned.

Saturday evening he took me to the historic Hotel Jerome. In the lobby, where we had sat hundreds of times, he found a way to trick me into looking up. When I looked down, he was on one knee with the ring we had chosen right out in front of me. He asked the question, I answered it with an ecstatic “yes.” Before I knew what was happening, cameras started flashing in my face. I looked up and saw three of my family members, all decked out with SLRs, snapping away, grins on their faces from ear to ear.

Matt proceeded to tell me that we were going to dinner just the two of us, and then my brothers, cousins and friends (everyone that lived nearby) would have a toast with us afterward. He included everyone in the planning, making the evening even more memorable, not just for me, but for everyone involved.

Life can be tedious. It can often feel repetitive in the day-to-day. But, every once in a while, something happens that breaks up the monotony, that reminds someone just how much love is around them. I’m a big believer that our lives are defined by these moments, and I’m happy that Matt asking me to spend the rest of my life with him, and the celebration we had after I said yes, will always be one of them.

While her engagement was memorable, Barbara Platts hopes all of the stressful wedding planning will be easy to forget. Reach her at bplatts.000@gmail.com or on Twitter @BarbaraPlatts.