I Went on an Engagement-Moon and Here's Why You Should Too
The forces behind the blog The Frenchy Toast, Samuel Anthony and Erik Velasquez, are members of The Knot's Most Influential Weddings of 2019. After Velasquez recently proposed, the couple opted to enjoy an engagement-moon together. Read Harwit's account of the trip below.
I've noticed that as my life changes, the people around me seemingly evolve too. Over the course of my relationship with Erik, our friends and family members have always had an opinion. At first, it was, "You're moving to fast," which eventually was replaced five years later by, "When are you guys going to finally do it?"
Do what? Get married? We initially planned to have a staged proposal. Fortunately for me, my now-fiancé Erik knew I wanted something more meaningful, planned out… dare I say, real.
Prior to my engagement, I used to think tears during a proposal were dramatic. "These people are acting hysterically," I'd laugh to myself. It would be a constant source of ire in conversation with my friends who were coupled up, but not-yet-married or engaged.
And then I changed. When Erik proposed, I caught myself crying as he professed his love It dawned upon me: I was experiencing one of the most beautiful moments in my life with my life partner.
Standing at the Hotel Figueroa in downtown Los Angeles, I was with the person who means more to me than anyone else in the world, receiving a moment he had meticulously crafted for me. I was suddenly overwhelmed by the love, the immense beauty of it all.
Within 24 hours, however, my euphoric high plummeted into a tense ball of anxiety as I was inundated with the revolving, same three questions:
Do you have a date?
Where are you getting married?
Oh God, you're not inviting [insert name here] are you?
My excitement had turned to dread and the realization of planning and the stresses that accompany it slowly crept in my brain. What made it more difficult was the sentiment that I wasn't prepared to do this.
I had to pull myself out of the post-proposal funk.
Thankfully, as I was frantically opening a bottle of wine, Erik sat me down and let me in on a surprise: he was taking me on an engagement-moon trip to San Francisco for Valentine's Day. His ideology was that it would be nice to take some time off and run away together.
The relief sank in and I suddenly felt reinvigorated, prompting me to make a commitment for my sake and for Erik's too. I would truly celebrate our engagement, enjoying as much of this time as I can.
So how was I going to make this happen?
The first step I took was an oath to halt any wedding planning during the trip by removing all the unnecessary pressure off of myself I've been able to pull myself together. I knew that our time, before managing logistics and relationships around our wedding, would be brief-at-best so it was imperative to make the most out of our magical weekend away. We both wanted to focus on what is most important: each other.
We stayed in a suite at The Clift Royal Sonesta Hotel, an eclectic, vintage-inspired hotel in San Francisco. The hotel aspect was important to us especially as giddy newly-engaged lovebirds, who knew we wanted to spend a considerable amount of time in our hotel room.
The next step we proposed during our engagement-moon was to genuinely "date" each other while we are there. Yes, date! I'm talking about getting dressed up and going out for romantic dinners. You know, the kind of one-on-one time where the wine flows freely, the service is impeccable, and the food is so good that you can't stop noshing. (Think, Jasmine and Aladdin on the magic carpet if it was parked at a Michelin star restaurant and there was wine...really, really good wine and a total of three hours at Piperade).
It sounds gratuitously cliche, but I assure you I felt a deeper love for Erik. Looking back, this trip was one of the best things to happen since the proposal.
And for those who can't pick up and travel to another destination, a proposal-moon doesn't have to be in Capri or the Bay Area. Even if you opt for a staycation at a local hotel or turn off your phones and cook a delicious meal together, finding the time to connect with each other and find the silver lining in your proposal is enough. It's more than enough.