It’s been a little over a month since I proposed to Daniela. Every day, I’m feeling like I can take on almost anything. Usually when you feel a huge weight has been lifted, it’s when you’ve had something bad building up over time. But I think when you’ve had so many good moments building up, you can get a nice lasting effect. And these kinds of moments can inspire many more to come.
Even if you’ve made some mistakes, there’s always another way to get to the same, similar, or even better outcome. As long as you don’t rest on those mistakes.
I had planned to drive us to the north point in Stanley Park, with a perfect view of the ocean. But the littlest things foiled my plans and set off a snowball of panic in my head. Things like forgetting my Zipcar card to actually drive to that perfect point in the park. Then out of desperation, still trying to get into the Zipcar using the unlock feature in their app - which only works once you’ve used the card to unlock the car. It was a typical cold, December day in Vancouver, so the least I wanted to do was have Daniela freeze while I found some quick way to propose.
I was close to forgetting the whole proposal for then and just calling it a day. The thing was, it had to be that day - we were leaving to Mexico the following week and I wanted to break the news to her family there. It seemed like everything was going to fall apart. But I took a chance. I said: ‘hey, why don’t we just walk around the park a bit?’ It was a small suggestion, but when she agreed I was one step closer to where I wanted to go. I knew we weren’t going to reach the north point, so I started thinking about where I was actually going to do it. I really wanted it to be a place that was meaningful.
There’s this little spot near the northeast side of Stanley Park where Daniela and I stop when we ride our bikes in the spring and summer. It has a beautiful, serene, view of the Vancouver skyline and the marina by the park. It was perfect. We had stopped there so many times, having relaxing times and great conversations there. Once we approached it as we were walking, I knew this was the place.
This was it. I held her close, and put the opened case with the ring inside between us.
That day didn’t go as planned. But I improvised, and instead of finding the ‘next best thing,’ I quickly thought hard about the places that meant most to us. It’s one of those things in life that reminds us of our ability to act on chance. Instead of ruthlessly planning the details, I instead try to be as open to the changing courses in my life. It’s a mindset that’s helped me get through the hardest of situations.