The high school dance was nearly over when a handsome guy came up and started dancing with me. I knew who he was...a senior, and a popular athlete...but had had little interaction with him until then. Little did I know that that dance would set into motion our lifelong romance.
After that evening, my interest in getting to know Bobby grew, and we visited ever so briefly here and there. Glances in the cafeteria and quick smiles in the hallway were little indications that perhaps our feelings of interest were mutual. I was a junior, and to have Bobby’s attention was ever so exciting!
I checked 'yes'.
A week or so following our first dance, the “Buzz-A-Thon” aired. (The “Buzz-A-Thon” is a 24-hour annual live telecast sponsored by the Hillcrest High School media program, and Bobby and I were both involved in the production.) That year (2004), the program fell on February 14, Valentine’s Day, and while I was there, I found a heart-shaped note left inside of my mailbox in the classroom, with a long-stemmed red rose.
Inspired by George Strait, the note was simple, “Will you be my Valentine?” it said. “Check ‘yes’ or ‘no’”. Signed, Bobby.
I happily checked ‘yes’, had the note delivered by my best friend, Morgan, and giddily went on the air a while later to announce that “I have a Valentine”!
In the weeks that followed, our romantic interest grew, and we shared our first real date, prom, our first kiss, the Hillcrest baseball season, Bobby’s graduation, and a summer of getting to know each other more…watching the stars and learning to dream.
Bobby started school the next fall at Central Methodist University and we were apart a great deal during that time. Still, our young love matured through the distance, and we looked forward to our time together. We enjoyed my senior prom, graduation, and another summer of memories after that.
For the next couple of years, we were closer, while Bobby played baseball at CMU, and I began my time at the University of Missouri, forty minutes away. We “grew up” a lot during this time, together, dealing with the pressures and enjoying the pleasures of college and continually learning more about one another and what it means to love and be loved.
Bobby graduated in May 2008 and I began my senior year at Mizzou in August. Nearly five years later, after much patience and prayer, the time came for us to prepare for our lives together.
I said "yes".
On November 22, 2008, the man of my dreams proposed to me. Just arrived home for Thanksgiving Break, the stage for the evening was set through a romantic invitation. I was suspicious of a possible proposal, but not certain, and trying not to expect anything. My sister, Rachel, helped me dress and made certain that I felt beautiful for the evening. Bobby picked me up at my house at 5:00 p.m., wearing a snazzy red shirt and black slacks.
After a brief stop at Jordan Valley Park in downtown Springfield, we drove to a classy restaurant we had both been interested in trying, “Fire and Ice”. After a lovely meal, we stopped for coffee at the "Mudhouse" and enjoyed a fun visit there. After coffee, we watched a late showing of “Quantum of Solace” and then headed back to my house.
By this time, it was 12:30 a.m….a typical time to end the night, especially considering Bobby’s early morning due to work responsibilities. Instead of leaving, though, Bobby needed to use the restroom, and I invited him inside for a bit. Although it was late, he sat on the couch and got comfortable, and offered to watch an episode of “Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman”…my favorite! Not wanting to turn down such an offer, I accepted, and we watched the next episode in the line-up.
After the movie ended, it was nearly 1:30 a.m., and I suggested that Bobby needed to get home to get to bed since he had such an early morning. He agreed, and moved ever so slowly toward the door. He took his sweet time, and I wondered what was going on. He was seemingly in no hurry to leave, and kept checking his cell phone. Any hints toward a possible proposal that night had left much earlier in the evening, and although he was acting a bit odd, it was so late at night!
We went out onto the porch, bundled up, but still chilled by the cold November night air. Bobby then stepped just off of the porch, and reminded me that that location was where we had our first kiss. I corrected him slightly, since technically our first kiss was in his car after prom night, and it had been our second kiss that was in front of the porch. Minor details, though. He mentioned our kiss, and then his cell phone alarm went off. He told me what time it was…1:43 a.m., a time significant to the numeric code we have long used to say, “I love you”, or “I miss you”. At this point, I knew something incredible was about to happen.
Then, Bobby knelt to one knee, and simply said with innocence in his voice and an open ring box in his hand, “Emily Hope Miles, will you marry me?” I was stunned, surprised it was happening, and realizing that that was the moment I had dreamed about for so long. I was being proposed to. There was a brief pause, due only to my desire to savor that moment, and I said, “yes…yes, I will marry you”.
Bobby stood up, and after removing my other rings from my hand, placed the most beautiful ring I could have imagined on my finger. It fit, and was more perfect than I could have dreamed. I had chosen it from the store long before, but it was more than I remembered, and the largest gift I had ever received.
Then, a few treasured moments of hugs, tears, and silence. Bobby lifted me off of the ground, and we stood, tearfully, for a few minutes. He held me tightly, both of us aware of the significance of what we had just done. My knees were weak, my stomach was twirling, and everything was as it should have been.
After those precious moments, we went inside to get the camera, and took a few pictures
of each other and of the ring. We then sat in Bobby’s car, still overwhelmed by the occasion and the emotion of the night. I was tearful, and we were happy. Bobby played a song, that he said he had hidden from me for over a year, for that moment; “Soul Mate” by Josh Turner. It was exceptionally fitting, as we both knew that we had found ours, and in that evening, committed ourselves to the other for the rest of our lives. A few more minutes passed, and after more hugs, more tears, and much joy, we said “goodnight”, and parted ways for the evening. Bobby drove away, and I blew a kiss to
my new fiancé.
The night was perfectly romantic, from beginning to end, and the proposal itself was as fitting to our romance as I could have designed. It was a still, quiet night, under the stars, in the driveway where we shared so many conversations, goodnight kisses, and the kiss that began it all.
We said "I do".
Our wedding on August 15th, 2009 was just as I dreamed it would be, and was the perfect start to the happy marriage that Bobby and I enjoy. (Our coordinator, Becca at Social Graces, highlighted our wedding on their blog. Check it out here for photos and details from our big day.)
Bobby is an incredible man, and I consider myself blessed to be his. He knows me better than I know myself, he keeps me grounded, and he keeps me laughing. God has given me a precious gift in Bobby’s love, and has been working in our lives for longer than we realized, preparing each of us for one another. Bobby Phillips is the man of my dreams and forever my Valentine. I will always, always, check ‘yes’.
More special memories of ours:
Valentine's Day (2011)
Valentine's Day (2013)
And, the rest!