The Finish Line

So on to Part II of my finish line story...

During the marathon, I saw the manfriend around mile 7 and then not again until the finish. I figured he and Jeff got caught up at breakfast and didn't have time to catch me during the race. I saw my mom several points throughout the race as she's a pretty skilled marathon spectator by now.

As I crossed the finish line with mixed emotions of regret for not picking up the pace earlier, excitement for running a 3:35 marathon and exhaustion, I saw the manfriend. He was standing about 10 feet across the finish line in the chute.

The first thing that came out of my mouth was "What are you doing here?"

Race officials, volunteers and runners of course are the only ones allowed in the chute. The manfriend gave me a big hug and told me he was proud of me.

Then he pulled me to the side and said "I have a question to ask you."

Photo courtesy of mom

Things like..."You're the best thing that's happened to me. You're my best friend. I love you. and Will you marry me?" came out of his mouth as he got down on one knee and held out a little blue box.

As he started saying all of this, I knew what was coming, but he sure caught this sassafras off guard.

In front of a few thousand people at Hayward Field, at the completion of my best marathon, he asked and I said yes. 

Never in my life did I think he would pop the question in front of a huge crowd. I wasn't expecting it. Sure the idea crossed my mind once, but I didn't suspect it on race day.

Being the emotional person I am, I was pretty shocked I didn't cry or scream, but I think the marathon had a bit to do with it...

Finally, I can stop badgering the manfriend about a proposal. I'm sure he's happy about that. :)

Afterward, I finally ran into Emily and SarahOUL.

Always fun to meet bloggers in real life after a few years of talking via twitter, email and blogs. Emily killed her 3:15 goal, btw - 3:08!

After grabbing some chocolate milk, a banana and a Krusteaz pancake, we spent the next few hours taking photos, telling family and friends the news and finally heading to the runner BBQ. 

It was an exhausting day for sure, but super exciting. I wouldn't trade Part II for a BQ at the finish line. I guess that just means I'll have to run another marathon soon...

What you might be wondering:

Did we look at rings together? Yep, we visited a few jewelry stores about 6 months ago and looked at a variety of styles. What I thought I wanted definitely was NOT what ended up liking best on my hand. It's cool to see how my preference changed.

The center diamond of the ring was my great grandma Isabelle's, which makes the whole thing much more special to me. My grandma gave the manfriend the diamond last summer.

The manfriend started looking at designs and working with the jeweler back in January, but once he picked the design, the process took about two weeks to make the ring.

Because I know I would want to know what the ring looks like - here's a peek. 

Did the manfriend get my dad's permission? Sure did. On the way home from his bike race a few weeks ago, he stopped by my parents' house when my mom was gone to have a "chat" with my dad. So on Sunday, my mom was totally clueless to what was going to happen.

After "Congratulations!" the next thing people are asking is when and where is the wedding. Honestly, I have no idea. I have dream ideas and real world ideas (trip to Europe + a small party to celebrate with family and friends).

Right now, we are both just trying to enjoy the moment and just be. I'm not ready to be stressed out with planning yet.

The most fun part (besides staring at the ring), is hearing how excited everyone else is for us. It just makes you realize how much your friends and family really care and want to see you happy.

Spoiler Alert: I thought it would be fun to reveal the manfriend's real name. I'll probably continue using manfriend because I just like it, but the manfriend is - Pete!

Would you want to be surprised? Any fun engagement stories to share? 

P.S. Thank you all for being awesome readers. Seriously.


I have been not so patiently waiting for this post! I cant tell you how happy I am for you two! And I love that he managed to totally surprise you! I was so excited when I heard the news on Sunday, it really made my dad. You guys are such a special couple and I just love the manfriend (and feel lucky that I've gotten to meet him!)

I am glad you are not putting pressure on yourself to make decisions. Enjoy this post engagement glow. I look forward to hearing the plans as they develop!

And I am so glad you included a picture of the ring!!! It's gorgeous! I wanted to ask to see a pic but feared that would be a tacky request. :)

I would want to be totally surprised, too! . I like the way my best friends husband did it - he had me help him pick out the ring. So she had no idea it was coming! But I knew for 6 weeks which was THE hardest secret to keep!!!!
abbi said…
Congratulations! That was a fantastic surprise and will outshine a marathon any day (though you still certainly rocked it too!).
Jessica J said…
Congrats! What a wonderful proposal story. And your ring is gorgeous, I love that the diamond was your grandma's. Congrats again and enjoy your engagement, they go fast!
missris said…
Aww I love this story! And congratulations!! The ring is gorgeous.
I was hoping you would post this today. So excited for you and what a NEAT story!!!! Your ring is absolutely beautiful. Enjoy the moment and then start planning for the big day. I am so glad that I got to meet you!
Oh my gosh that is awesome. Congratulations! So happy for you!
Britton said…
Congrats girl!!! What a proposal!!! What's better than finishing your best marathon?! Not much but getting engaged is definitely one of the few things I can think of! Enjoy this time!!!
Leigh said…
Congratulations again Lauren! I am so excited for the both of you! I remember when we were in Victoria and talking about rings....Pete did a great job on yours! :)

ps- I'm also an emotional person and didn't cry when Brian proposed. I made up for that during our wedding ceremony though!
Congrats, Sass & Pete! :) Such cute photos, and an awesome story to tell!

I've always wondered if people really remember what's said, hah. I guess you remember the important things - question, answer!

Yayyyy! I have also been not so patiently waiting for this post.

Pete did such a great job on the proposal, I cannot think of a more perfect proposal for you two. Especially since you met running! And on your best marathon time yet. AHHH!

Your ring is gorgeous!! Isn't it funny how rings look different on different fingers? I also had a totally different idea about the kind of ring I wanted but when we went and tried them on a few months before Eric proposed I discovered it did NOT look good on my finger. Yours is GORGEOUS and looks great on your finger. I also love, love, love that it's your grandmothers diamond. That is just so special!

I'm over the moon happy for you!!! XO
Congrats!! What a wonderful story you will have to tell over the years. I've been following your blog for quite a while now and am always inspired by your running/active adventures. So happy for you!
Oh my gosh that is awesome! What an exciting day and what a perfect place for a proposal! I am so happy for you!
Cynthia said…
What an AWESOME story!!! Both your marathon time AND the proposal. I think it's one of the top proposals I've heard :D And while I think the manfriend's name totally suits him (he really looks like a Pete, in my opinion), I love the 'manfriend' moniker :)

I don't get a chance to comment often, but I just wanted to say I love reading your blog. You and the manfriend seem to have a great relationship, and I love reading a Oregon blog (I live in London currently, but my family is back in WA/OR).

Congratulations, again!
Thanks everyone! You guys seriously have made my day. Sometimes I wonder who is reading this thing so it's really nice to get so much feedback when exciting things happen. :)

Cynthia - thanks for reading and commenting. It's always nice to hear compliments like that.
Raquelita said…
Congratulations! Your ring is lovely and what a fantastic proposal story! (I also found out that styles I thought I liked did not look good on me when we went looking at rings.)
Heather said…

Congrats, my friend :) xoxoxo
Mrs. C. said…
omg what a surprise! Completing a marathon is an unforgettable moment and now it will truly be a moment you will remember forever!!! What a great story:) Congratulations!
Meggie said…
Congratulations! You met him while writing this blog right? ie you were not dating him when you started the blog (ie there is hope for some of us out there?!?)?

Beautiful ring and beautiful story!!!
Dawnetta Rios said…
I've said it in person but I'll say it here too: I'm so happy for you! You two are adorable and such good people. I wish you many years of happiness.
Lindsey said…
I love this story! That's awesome your mom got photos even though she didn't know it was going to happen!

Perfect that you revealed the manfriend's name on this post. Congrats to you guys!
Run Jess Run said…
So excited for you! Enjoy the moment and the planning!
Trisha said…
Wow, what a great way to end a great race! Congratulations to you and the manfriend. I have to admit, you telling us his name kind of feels like Sex and the City when we finally learned what Big's name was! :)
J said…
AHHH So happy for you!!! First - your fiance!!! looks like a Pete! Second congrats! So happy for you. Sorry you didnt make the BQ but I know you will get it next time. Love your ring - it is so beautiful!!!
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Raina said…
Congratulations to you both! What a perfect ending to a marathon story. I really can't imagine a better end to a race. Now I wish I had seen it all!!

I love that you helped pick out the ring. We had a jeweler design mine as well, and used a family diamond for the center stone.

What a SMART guy Pete is- He knew what he wanted and he got to the finish line first :) A happy ending and a happy beginning!
Emily said…
Congrats!!! I have a secret. The end of a half-marathon/marathon is my dream proposal situation!!!
Doing a little (ahhhhh!) for you silently in my quiet office! SO exciting! Congrats girlie!!
Ricole Runs said…
NOO WAYYYY!!!!! Man I was so busy all week and haven't stalked blogs nearly enough and I CANT BELIEVE I MISSED THIS! CONGRATS CONGRATS CONGRATS! That is so freaking exciting and I can't believe that happened at the end of a MARATHON!!!
Haley said…
CONGRATULATIONS! I was wondering when this was going to happen :) Perfect proposal for you!
Redhead Running said…
How in the world did I miss this post?!?!? OMG CONGRATS!!!!!!!!! Wasn't it the most amazing feeling??!!?!? I'm so happy for you and your ring is beautiful! Pete did a great job and I love that the diamond is an heirloom!!! Eeeekkkk!!! No wonder you asked me about my wedding plans! Send me an email anytime if you want to talk planning! :)

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