Wow, I definitely did not think this would happen this fast! Eric Hansen and I got engaged on Sunday, December 17th. I figured since this is the coolest and most important thing that has ever happened to me in my life I should probably write about it. I am so in love with him I can hardly believe it. I am the luckiest girl in the entire world! We’re planning on getting married in the Mt. Timpanogas Temple in Pleasant Grove, UT on June 16th, although that’s still up for debate.
I figure I should post how this all came about. *Warning: this is the long version… If you don’t really want to read it I won’t be offended* So, I’m going to start at the beginning.
At the end of this summer my family went to Australia, which meant that I needed to find another way to get my car up to school than just driving it up myself. So Taylor and I asked Paul and Tyler if they would drive it up to school for us. Since they had my car I didn’t feel too bad asking them to pick us up from the airport. By the time Taylor and I arrived in Utah we were pretty exhausted. Our trip had ended with a whirlwind adventure to get us home. We flew out of Australia at noon, to arrive in New Zealand in the late afternoon, left New Zealand in the early evening, and after flying for over 12 hours arrived in LA earlier than we had left Australia that same morning (because we crossed the international dateline). Then we flew to Utah, and waited for awhile for Tyler to come and pick us up from the airport. All in all we’d been traveling for over 24 hours and were pretty messed up at that point. Anyways, Tyler picked us up and we had to drive back to his apartment first to drop him and Terry off. I’d also given Tyler my cell phone while I’d been out of the country so we had to go in to their apartment so I could get the charger back. While we were there I wanted to stay for a minute and say hi to Paul and meet their roommates and such. It seemed like the polite and sociable thing to do.
That was when I met Eric. It wasn’t like a pillar of light and we started singing “I’ve seen that smile, somewhere before”. However, I do remember thinking he seemed really cool and the thought definitely passed through my mind that I would like to date him, but I didn’t really take it seriously. I was as good as drunk at the time with jet-lag, I was so tired that most thoughts going through my mind were discounted. We didn’t stay for very long because Taylor wanted to go home. So, we actually ended up making a pretty abrupt exit. I felt really bad about it because I wanted to be gracious for the guys bringing my car up to Utah for me and the least I could do was stay and visit for a bit. When I got home I realized that I had some things in the car that weren’t mine, which gave me the perfect excuse to return to the guys’ apartment and be gracious. It was really funny going back because the one person who I remember being totally hospitable and kind was Eric… this random guy who I didn’t know at all. But I totally remember him being the one who invited me to stay for ice cream. I stayed for as long as I could, but then they pulled out Dance Dance Revolution, and I was about to pass out cold on their couch. So, I finally went home. But Eric had definitely left an impression on me. I wasn’t going to act on it or anything, I honestly never thought it would go anywhere but I totally remember thinking he was a really nice guy and I would like to get to know him better.
Through the semester I stopped by their apartment sporadically. The second time I went by their apartment Eric happened to be the one to open the door. He asked if I remembered his name, and unfortunately I’m pretty abysmal with remembering names. I knew that the three roommates that I didn’t know were Matt, Greg and Eric. I also knew that Matt was the tall one (it was easy for me to remember because I have another good friend named Matt who is really tall) so I could eliminate that one. So it was down to Greg and Eric, which unfortunately share a lot of the same phonetic qualities so I hadn’t gotten the two straight. I also remembered that this was the roommate who had offered me ice cream and made an excellent impression on me… but it was still a debate between the two names. So I just took my chances with 50/50… and guessed Greg. Oops.
Natalie and I stopped by one night to visit and ended up watching part of a movie with Paul and again, Eric said hi to us and was totally nice to us while the guys were less enthusiastic to see us. I would see Eric sometimes if I was walking home from school in the right direction after my Phonology/Morphology class (maybe that’s weird, but you get used to knowing the people you know who you’re going to run into, and like I said, he’d made an impression). In fact, because I thought he was a pretty cool guy, and Mondays and Wednesdays were my frumpier days, I sometimes intentionally walked a different way so that he wouldn’t see me while I was frumpy 😛
My mom made sweet rolls when she came down and we took them some and Eric helped Taylor find her target for the BYU Facebook Squirt Gun Street Wars. I remember thinking at the time that I should mention to my mom that there was one of the guys’ roommates that I had a minor crush on, but I decided against it. In a way that was good because it gave her a chance to get an unbiased first impression of him. After that night he added me as a friend on Facebook. A little while later he sent me a message on Facebook. We messaged back and forth pretty regularly for a couple weeks up until YA tour and Thanksgiving. Then I got busy and was sorta neglecting all that stuff. I figured it was more important to take care of people in my real life rather than the make believe people on Facebook- no matter how cool I thought it was that Eric was talking to me on Facebook.
After Thanksgiving I finally started having time in my life again (huh, funny what happens when you’re not working 36+ hours a week for Young Ambassadors). It was the weirdest feeling in the world. I didn’t know what to do with myself. I started praying that I would find worthwhile things to do with my time. Then came fast Sunday. I’d been really frustrated and I knew that what I needed was more patience. Patience to know that things were going to work out according to the Lord’s plan. Plus I’d been feeling lonely, just like I was missing the other part of me. It seemed insane for me to be really upset about this. I have some of the best friends in the entire world and I’m in the best place I’ve ever been. It seemed like everything in my life was going perfectly and I felt extremely ungrateful feeling lonely because it meant I was focusing too much on the one thing I didn’t have rather than all of the things I did have. Anyways, so I was praying that day for patience that the will of the Lord would prevail and somewhat secondarily that the Lord would help me to find a man to love, if it was His will. I believed that the Lord *could* do that, but I don’t think I really believed that He *would*, if that makes sense. I figured I could tell Him the desires of my heart and if it was His will it would happen, but in all honesty I expected Him to tell me to continue with my plans of serving a mission and put those desires on hold.
That night I was online and I saw something that I wanted Paul to see. So, I sent him an IM really quick. Paul wasn’t there, but Eric responded on Paul’s behalf. We chatted for a couple minutes. Apparently Paul & Tyler were there on the other end and suggested that he ask me out for that Friday. He thought it sounded like an alright idea and so he did. I’d been bored out of my mind and thought it sounded like a lot of fun so I accepted, but it was getting late and we both had early classes so we both went to bed. I really didn’t think anything was going to happen from it. I thought it was going to be fun, but I honestly didn’t think it would go past that. I have a tendency to over-analyze and I didn’t want to do that and so I didn’t think on it. On Monday Paul told me that I should talk online to Eric, and apparently he had told Eric the same thing so we started talking. It was a lot of fun. We talked for awhile about just… different things. It just kinda clicked. We talked for an hour and a half before we really had to get offline, but we agreed that we ought to talk some more later. So… we did. We talked again on Tuesday night for three hours, and then again on Wednesday night we talked for another hour and a half. It wasn’t long before I found myself drawn to my computer frequently in hopes of seeing Eric online and getting to talk to him for any amount of time. I couldn’t help but being super happy while I was talking to him and it was amazing how well we got along. Even on weird random things we would agree and I kept questioning myself whether I was just agreeing with him because I liked him, or if I really did agree with him. But our view points were so closely aligned that I couldn’t find anything to disagree with him over.
On Thursday morning I realized that he had his playoff game for the intramural soccer championships that night. When he had initially mentioned it I couldn’t have gone because we had YA rehearsal, however, rehearsal that day had been shortened because Randy thought we deserved it. At this point I was really enjoying getting to know this Eric guy and I was falling for him pretty hard, but we hadn’t really spent any actual face-to-face time together since we’d started talking that week. So, I thought it would be fun to go, even though we were going on a date the very next night and we could easily see where things were really going then, I just wanted to see him. So, we arranged that he would pick me up at the KMB on his way to the game.
Well, YAs got out even earlier than anticipated, and Taylor happened to be at the KMB. She was on her way to my apartment to steal my car for… something… I can’t remember now what she wanted the car for but we’d talked about it earlier so it was no big deal. But since I didn’t really have anything to do while I waited for Eric we decided that I would walk home with her and she’d drop me off on her way back to the dorms. It actually worked out fairly well because I hadn’t had a chance to curl my hair and it gave me a chance to sorta spruce myself up before going to the game (and yes, I curled my hair to go to a soccer game… don’t judge me). So, we did that. The game was a lot of fun. Afterwards Eric invited me over for some hot chocolate. I really wanted to accept, but I had a meeting that I needed to have been to at 7pm… and it was already past then. I had told the people in charge that I’d be late, but I definitely had promised to be there. We arranged that I would call him after the meeting and we could get together then.
So, afterwards I called him and he came over and played cards with my roommates and me. We played “And it Came to Pass”. It was really funny because both of us were trying to test the water… without actually testing the water. So, for the entire game we were on the largest of my apartment’s couches on our own, and sitting leg to leg with the whole rest of the couch open. It was a blast. And then he left all of a sudden saying that he had some homework to do. I figured I’d blown it. I’d come on too strong and the next night was going to be super awkward now. I cleaned up our card game and tried to brush it off.
However later that night Eric came on line and we talked online for another 3 hours. Apparently he really did just have homework and had to go (I’ve discovered since then that Eric does just tend to make abrupt exits, but he doesn’t mean anything by it). While we were talking Eric told me that he thought he liked me as more than a friend, and I conceded that I liked him as more than a friend as well (as I had conceded in my blog the night previous). The next morning he sent me a Facebook request to declare us as in a relationship and I accepted. It was kinda a relief because I wasn’t exactly sure what the outcome was of our discussion the previous night, so it was nice to see it actually spelled out. So.. yeah, we hadn’t been on a single date yet and we had declared ourselves as dating.
That night we went with Paul and another girl to Taylor’s end of the semester vocal recital. Eric came and picked me up and he looked incredible. It was kind of a funny situation because we were definitely dating but we’d still never held hands or anything. I’m not going to lie, I was really scared I was going to mess things up. I hadn’t held hands or anything with a guy in over two years and I just didn’t really know what to do anymore. But on our way racing into the MOA for the concert he grabbed my hand and we walked in hand in hand. It felt so… complete? We kinda played with holding hands during the concert. When the concert was over I discovered that Eric is a very cuddly guy. It was so nice just to be held and feel loved and safe again. We had a blast just walking around the Museum of Art and looking at the displays and all that. After the museum we went back to his apartment to play Settlers of Zarahemla (which, don’t worry, is one of my favorite games of all time) and drink hot chocolate. We had a moment while we were alone in the kitchen just cuddling and waiting for the water to boil. Although I’m not normally a kiss-on-the-first-date kind of girl… this was a completely different ball game. Even though we’d only been talking since the beginning of that week and this was technically our first date, I felt like I already really knew him… so yeah, we kissed. After Setties and hot chocolate Paul took his date home, but Eric and I stayed and watched some part of a movie with Terry and Marissa and then he walked me home.
On Saturday evening we had planned another date, but ended up just doing our own thing back at his place. On Sunday he had to work, so he came to church with me in the morning. We got together again that evening and went to his sister Julie’s house for a family Christmas dinner. I posted earlier about how I really fell hard for Eric that night. Just watching the way he was with his nephews and his family totally melted me. We saw each other pretty much every possible moment after that, studying at his place, or mine, or the stats lab or the Wilkinson Center. We went to the temple with Taylor and Jeanine after classes on Wednesday to do baptisms.
On Friday night we had an actual date set again- my dad was in town for business meetings and had tickets to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas Concert down in Salt Lake City. We ended up running way behind because Taylor and Rob couldn’t leave early and we got stuck in major traffic. We let Taylor and Rob out before we parked so they made it into the concert but my dad, Eric & I were too late and weren’t able to get in. So, we walked around Temple Square and watched a high school choir concert in the Visitor’s Center until we were kicked out. So, we went over to my dad’s hotel and went to the bar there (yes, I can officially say that the first time I ever went to a bar was with my dad) and got some virgin daiquiris. It was kinda funny watching my dad and Eric interact because we all knew that my dad was trying to grill Eric and find out everything possible. It was interesting after my dad’s threats for years of presenting any guy that wanted to date me with a shotgun threat, to see how my dad really acted. It was a lot more like how I’ve seen him act as a businessman. Very professional and engaging, and trying to present his very best side while conducting important conversations. It was really interesting to watch.
We had dinner with Taylor and Rob and then we had to go home. The whole evening went really well. It was soo good having Eric there with my family and everything just fit so well together. He totally felt like he belonged there. On the way home it was snowing pretty badly, and I am not at all qualified to drive in snow… especially not in my little Kia Sephia. But, I had driven us up there, and it was my car. So I was driving and it was getting pretty scary. Literally, there were a couple dozen times that I looked at the road and couldn’t tell if I was in the lane I intended to be in, or any lane at all. It was probably the worst driving conditions I have ever been in (and I know… I’m from California and that’s not saying much… shut up. It was still the worst I’d ever been in). However, I had the strangest feeling of peace and serenity just knowing that Eric was in the car. I’m not entirely sure how to explain that. Normally I would have freaked out and been totally hyer-ventilating, and having other people in the car would have made it ten times worse. However, just Eric’s presence was enough to keep me calm and under control. It was a totally amazing and indescribable feeling. However, regardless of how peaceful he made me feel by being there, I was even more grateful when he offered to take the wheel. We switched drivers when we reached Lehi and Eric drove the rest of the way home. I was soo grateful I can’t even explain it. We dropped off Taylor and her date, then I dropped Eric off and went home. I hadn’t been home for more than 10 minutes when Eric called me. He had work in less than 3 hours and was planning on foregoing sleep that night rather than getting a disgustingly inadequate amount of sleep. He asked if he could come over and tell me something. I was just getting ready to change out of my dress and into PJs so I quickly agreed. I met him outside my front door (it was past curfew) and we talked for a little while. Finally he said, “I think I more than like you.” and I conceeded that I more than liked him as well, to which he replied “I think I love you.” and I told him “I think I love you too.” It was the warmest feeling in the entire world. We stood there talking for awhile, still in awe that after only one week we could even be considering, let alone saying those words. Love? In a week? That’s ridiculous! There’s no way we could possibly already have those kinds of feelings for each other. But they were there so strongly there was no way I could deny that it was exactly what I felt for him, ridiculous or not. We talked for a while longer and I resolved to myself that I would go and pray about marrying him. Not that I thought we were imminently coming to a place to make such a decision… but I just felt like I should at least be considering that option and praying about it. More than anything I wanted to check in with the Lord that I was on a good path.
So, I did. I prayed about it on Saturday and we hung out again that day. I decided to fast about it on Sunday. I felt so at peace it was rather uncanny. Nothing has ever felt so right in my entire life. But, I still didn’t think I was imminently approaching truly making the decision, I just knew what my answer was when we got to that point. That day I attended both my ward and his as well as various other church meetings. After Eric’s ward I stopped by Bishop Klein’s office to visit him for a little while. Then Eric and I made dinner together before going to a Christmas fireside his ward was putting on. The fireside was a lot of fun. When it was over we were talking to the high councilor assigned to Eric’s ward, who was asking us about how long we’d dated, to which we replied not very long. Then Eric asked the man how long he had dated his wife before getting engaged, to which he replied “nine days.” Eric and I both looked at each other. That day was day nine for us. We giggled and assured him that we weren’t planning anything of that nature right then.
But it sparked a conversation and we sorta talked about things as we walked home and around to my ward prayer and stuff that night. We’d discussed things like life plans and number of kids we both wanted the day before, and then we talked about what ward I would attend if we hypothetically were to get engaged. Finally, that night we were sitting out in his living room on our own just talking. We both shared how we’d gained our testimonies and talked about other equally important things. Then Eric asked me how I was feeling about where our relationship was going. I’d been fasting and I already felt like I had an answer, but I didn’t know how much to say… I mean, we’d only been dating 9 days! I totally thought he would think I was insane for even considering praying about it. But, since his question was just how I felt about it I gave him a very honest answer, I told him that “I feel REALLY good about where this is going. And then I turned the question back to him, and he agreed that he also felt REALLY good about our relationship’s direction. We talked a bit longer and he asked me something about dates but I wasn’t focusing really well at that point, I was far too excited. Then, Eric pulled us both off the couch and stood up in front of me, pulled of his CTR ring and offered it towards me and asked, “Brittny Anderson, will you marry me?”, to which I obviously answered “yes!” and accepted his CTR ring, which happened to fit me perfectly. And, that was that.
Some people might think that was a really lame proposal, but I love it SO much. I absolutely love that he asked me with his CTR ring one night while we were just sitting there talking. There’s nothing contrived about it. It was the most natural decision in the world. I’m so happy it wasn’t tainted by a lot of planning and scheming and scripting. It was just Eric and me. There’s none of the accepting the ring instead of the man that I hate so much, or anything like that. It wasn’t the big production with the bells and whistles and a ton of people, just the two of us. I wish I could explain better what I mean, but to me, it’s the most romantic story in the whole world. We went out and bought a real ring the next day and he’s planning on proposing for reals sometime later… but in all honesty, I’ll be kinda sad to give up his CTR ring, even though it’s kinda bulky for my hands. Not that I’m not excited about the engagement ring, because I’m not a moron- it’s a gorgeous ring and I am really excited about it and can’t wait. But, I just like looking at this CTR ring and thinking that it’s really Eric’s and I’m wearing it, and I’m really going to marry Eric! I remember sometime when I was younger (like probably 10-12 kind of younger) for some reason I was talking to one of my friends about getting engaged or rings or something and I TOTALLY remember saying that I would be just as happy if a guy gave me his CTR ring as if he had some big rock. I was wrong, I’m infinitely happier! Eric is so amazing. He has definitely made all of my dreams come true in ways that I didn’t even expect. I still can’t tell you how this all happened right now. The timing is impeccable. There’s no way I would have had time to give this relationship what it needed back in November during all of the insanity that is YAs, and I won’t have this kind of time again when YAs gets going again. But right now… it just all works out so perfectly.
So, yeah, I could tell you more, but I’ve already been working on this entry over two separate days and I want to post it. I’m sure I will write more in days to come. I’m just beside myself with joy! Eric is the most amazing guy I have ever met in my life. I wrote an entry about that earlier so I won’t go through all the reasons I love him again, but you can rest assured that I love him more than anything. I don’t know what I could have done to deserve him in my life, but I will be working for the rest of my life to keep myself worthy of this blessing. Every day I find more and more things that we have in common and reasons that he is truly the most incredible person I have ever met. I hope I can live up to his hopes and dreams because he has totally surpassed mine.