Six Years Ago Today… I Got Engaged

My daughter and I leave for New York tomorrow. Isn’t it crazy how fast our plans can change? How fast our expectations can change?

Six years ago today, Nick and I were visiting my mom for her birthday at my beloved childhood home in Lake Stevens, WA. A snowstorm had been in the forecast for a couple of days, but we were still surprised when we looked out the window after dinner that evening, seeing how quickly the snow had accumulated on the ground outside.

With pure white covering every inch of our almost 4 acre property, the view was breathtaking. But, as beautiful as it was, I wasn’t sure I wanted to go out. I was wearing jeans and though I love the snow immensely. I equally as immensely hate being cold and wet. But, Nick (already fitting in as a loving older brother to my younger siblings) encouraged us to go out and enjoy it. “After all, how often does it actually end up snowing enough for a snowman around here?” So, I found as many layers as I could from family members’ closets.

Almost a foot of snow was on the ground and all four of us (Nick, my mom, my brother, my sister and I) ran outside. We ran in circles, jumped in the snow, threw snowballs as far as we could, shouted our favorite songs to the sky and danced around the snowflakes. I remember at one point, facing away from the house and putting my head up to look at the moon. I ran and ran that way until my lungs stung. And, it felt so good. I had moved out a year before and was working two jobs and going to school full time. I felt the burden of being grown up all of the time. But, when I was with my brother and sister, being a kid again just felt right.

We built a snowman. We set him up right in front of the house in the glow from the living room window. He was big. We placed one of my dad’s old hats on his head, a scarf around his neck, and got his eyes and carrot nose just right. Then, we all took a step back. He was handsome… for a snowman.

As we all headed for the door, Nick grabbed my hand, “Walk with me?” I was freezing cold and soaking wet and it was getting late, but I didn’t care. That night seemed to be infused with magic and I didn’t want it to end.

And, magical it certainly was. We walked and walked. The moonlight bounced off the snow, making it sparkle and making it easy to see. There in the snow, six years ago today, 21 year old Nick got down on his knees, took my hand and asked me to marry him. Six years ago today, I asked him if he was serious and if other people would think we were crazy. “Does it matter? God told me that you are supposed to be my wife.” He was the one and both of us had known all along. Months before, God had written his name on my heart. I already knew what I was going to say, so I finally said it. I said, “Yes.”

You should have seen his smile that night.

Six years ago I was looking forward to spending every day of the rest of my life with my love. Six years ago today, I never in a million years would have envisioned my life the way it is now.

Though things have been hard, I wouldn’t trade my time with Nick for anything. I am so very thankful for every single memory and I will continue to keep them close to my heart. Six years ago, God knew what was going to happen. God knew what our path held. For that, I am grateful; grateful that He chose me to be Nick’s wife and walk with him through the magic and the trials.

I cant help but wonder where God will lead me six years from now. Luckily, I no longer waste time trying to guess… :]


Comments

  1. Valerie says:

    May God contoune to shower you with wonderful blessings. Truth is when ypubleave everything in His hands, He will guide you right where you need to be. Blessings and hug hugs to you and your baby. Hope you have an awesome time at the SB.

  2. Laura Inglis says:

    WOW!! What an amazing memory, Alyssa. Thank you for sharing that with us. You shared it so well, I can almost envision that night. While we don’t know what life will hold for the next six years, we sure know WHO holds it. For that, I am amazingly grateful.

  3. Rebecca says:

    You are such a gifted writer! Thank you for sharing such a beautiful story! :)

  4. Brittany says:

    Alyssa – what a beautiful memory. Thank you so much for sharing this journey. I lost my mother to breast cancer three years ago when I was 20. I was a very bitter, angry person. That is until I started following your blog. You and Nick have changed lives. You changed my life. I always remind myself to have a Nick attitude! I constantly remind myself that God is good and his plans are bigger than my fears. You have touched so many lives and Nick will live on through so many hearts.

    God bless you three.
    Enjoy your trip, you absolutely deserve it!

  5. I felt so much like I was there with you that night while reading this. Please put your love and faith and testaments to Christ in some book or books and help others through their journey. You’ve helped me more than you could know. God bless you sweet Alyssa.

  6. Alyssa, You have grown up so fast. You and Nick are a beautiful young couple and soo brave too. !! You bring to everyone what is REALLY important , life and enjoying everyday,no matter what.!!
    Your daughter is beautiful and please keep her daddy’s life alive for her to know what kind of man he was.!

    best wishes to you,
    Donna
    Cleveland,Ohio

  7. Tammy Cunningham says:

    That was so amazing, the recollection of that night! I felt I was living it through your eyes. I just came across your blog a few nights ago after someone shared Nick’s video on Facebook. I am so sorry for your loss. What a testament of faith both you and nick have demonstrated through this journey. I do hope you decide to put all this in a book one day when the time is right. Please know that I will be praying during the days ahead.

  8. Mabel says:

    Beautifully penned ….. Beautiful story ….. Beautiful people…..
    God’s glory has been displayed in your lives

  9. Christie says:

    Alyssa words cannot express how much Nick and you have touched my heart….very blessed by reading your blogs….God bless you and the little princess!

  10. Carla says:

    Just beautiful…..You really do need to write a book.

  11. Auntie Karen says:

    Alyssa, you have no idea how many times I have thanked God that He brought you two together and that -you were there to love Nick through these years.

    What a beautiful memory this is! And as you say, you have so many other memories to treasure also. What a gift. I hope you keep sharing because your faith and your writing continue to bless so many.

    Praying for you as you cheer on the Hawks (i know that Nick is with you!). Have a wonderful trip!!
    Love you- always.
    Auntie Karen

  12. Yolanda says:

    You have such a way with words…what a beautiful memory! I saw the video Nick made for your sweet baby girl and it brought me to tears. What an amazing testimony he has left of his faith and yours. I liked what he said about being able to know his time was limited and making the most of it. That is so true, we don’t know when our time will come. He reminded me that I need to be more mindful of that and make to sure my family/friends know how much I love them. Thank you for sharing your story and may God richly bless you and your daughter! Enjoy your trip and stay warm!

  13. Carla Deter says:

    Hi Alyssa,

    I’m not quite sure how I came upon Nick’s video. But, I watched it in its entirety (with Kleenex in hand). I’m not going to make this long-winded or anything. But, I want you to know…I thought I had a situation going on right now that is too much to handle. This has helped me see my own life in a different way. So, thank you. Please keep sharing this because others need to realize that when we think we’re at our worse life scenario there is someone else at a deeper place of sadness. Now, I don’t say this to be negative or anything. Today, I have realized that my pains are truly still my pains but in comparison I need to take a step back and know it’s not the ultimate. Does that make sense? Anyway, thank you for allowing me to experience a small bit of your life. ~ Carla

  14. Anita says:

    You are a fine writer. I hope you will continue to develop this gift, and record your thoughts, lessons and experiences. As your husband’s life witness so clearly did, your writing too can change people’s lives. God bless you.

  15. Nicole says:

    I saw your husbands video and was touched.
    I will share it with all my friends. May God
    Bless you and your family.

  16. Lacy says:

    Your story, your life is truly a blessing to many people, thank you for sharing and may God continue to bless both you and beautiful little Ms. Austin

  17. Andrew says:

    I saw Nick’s video a couple of weeks ago through FaithIt.com I sit here the night before the Super Bowl and who am I thinking about? You and Nick and your family. I think the reason I keep thinking about your story is that in a day and age where Christians are lambasted, ridiculed, and mocked….in a day and age where people leave the church for petty reasons or because things ‘don’t go their way….in this day and this age it is refreshing to see two people stay connected and even draw closer to Jesus when things aren’t going the way that we as humans would want them to go. I am thankful for your testimony. I am thankful for Nick and who he was here on earth as a man. I will continue to pray for you and your precious daughter that the Lord will hold you in the palm of His Hand for all the days to come and bring you peace. Amen.

  18. Andrew says:

    Well, they won it for Nick. Congrats Seattle!

  19. Brandon says:

    I watched the video Nick made for Austin at work and I must say I had some tears fall down my face. That video made me think that he is the true definition of a dad. Its such a shame that he was taken so soon. However he is in a place where there is no suffering and watching proudly his lil girl grow up. I can’t help but think what you are going through but I do wish you all the best and may God bless you, Austin and your family.

  20. Joan Campbell says:

    I had been feeling sorry for myself — my Dad died one year ago today. Several times throughout the day, I just broke down. I miss he and my Mom so much and am so sad without them.

    Hearing your husband’s words this evening for the first time, about reaching for my Bible, and just “grabbing a verse” is something I’ve failed in doing recently…Not intentionally ignoring God, but certainly taking for granted that he waits to comfort me.

    Thank you both for your strength and your story. It’s obvious that Nick’s mission is moving through others, and I’m grateful. xoxo

  21. Kristina says:

    Hi … I just wanted to let you know that I came across your story today and I have been touched by Nick & you Alyssa. God bless that two of you for helping me see the light & find my way back to the Lord. Thank You. Austin, you have an amazing Mommy & Daddy !!!

  22. Mary says:

    Your story really touched and inspired me in some way. Thanks for blessing others. Your strength, love, and courage that your family brought together is very awe-inspiring. God bless you all more and more. Those who believe in Him have faith that in this world, their will be trials and tribulations but the Lord overcame the world, and so did Nick!

  23. Mom says:

    Thank you Jesus for giving my daughter the awesome gift of writing in such a magnificent way! She has grown up to be such a talented young woman and I am so blessed to know that she follows You, and that she gives all the glory to You!
    I remember that night at our house on my birthday! I just love the way you shared your moment with Nick! Just beautiful honey! Like I always said…I prayed for Nick since the day you were born, and he was a direct answer to that prayer! It truly has been an amazing love story and an awesome testimony for Christ that the Lord has been weaving, since you met Nick, and will continue to weave, as you press on in your life, to accomplish all that He has for you! I love you Alyssa!

  24. Sean Huncherick says:

    Oh my gosh. Thank you so much for following Christ with all that you are. I’m so honored to have heard your testimony and cannot wait to meet three of you. You have so much and always will. I love this.

  25. Kelechi says:

    Dear Alyssa, I LOVE your love for God and Nick. I am sure that Nick is smiling down on you and your daughter right now. He is PROUD of you! God definitely meant for you two to be ONE. God bless the rest of your journey and your BEAUTIFUL bundle of joy. Stay blessed & keep praying. God got your back! :)

    ps: Nick was an INSPIRATION!

  26. Pam says:

    Hi Alyssa,

    I am amazed by how strong you seem , even though deep down you are still hurting. I too am a wife whose husband has had cancer (for 17 years now, luckily in remission but since he was 21). With a young daughter, I really hope for the best for you and her. We have 3 daughters and he’s been out of remission once and it was horrible thinking the worst and praying for the best. Most recently he had issues in November but luckily a false alarm.

    I really truly loved reading everything you have written on this site. Thank you for all you do in giving people hope.

  27. Anna Waters says:

    Hi,
    I was moved to tears, as many others were after watching the video and learning about your story. But my tears are not like the others’ because my young husband has Cancer too. We are both Christian and have one very young daughter. You see, my 36 year old husband was diagnosed with Stage 4 Stomach Cancer five days before I gave birth… We are sisters in Christ, you and I – brought together by the Lord God Almighty Himself. I will commit to pray for you and your sweet daughter who is missing her Daddy terribly. I will commit to pray for the God of peace to wrap His loving arms around you. You are the fifteenth widow I have met since my husband got sick two years ago and there has to be some purpose behind all of this – I am still surprised by the continuing mystery the Cancer world brings. But I know none of it is a mistake – God is with us and He is definitely in control. I am praying for you, sweet lady. With Love & God’s blessings, Anna

  28. christian says:

    Hello Alyssa,
    It’s 3:30 am in Chicago right now, and I just spent 3 hours reading stories and blogs about Nick and your family…………..and his amazing video……………..heart-breaking but still inspiring – truly “God work”. I want you to know that I’ve had some major issues with my wife of 10 yrs lately and I’ve really been at the end of my rope – even thoughts of completely giving up on her and us, despite our 2 amazing young daughters……………..until I started reading Nick’s story and your story about the love you both had for each other……………..the same unconditional love I long for every day of my life. What a blessing you both are, and what a blessing Nick’s legacy will be forever…………….with your continued loving work, in his memory. God clearly had a plan for Nick and for you, and here’s an update………………His plan is working. Yes, Nick’s physical self is now gone……………….but I can actually FEEL his heart and soul through your words……………..is that even possible? It must be, or the Lord is simply trying to open my own eyes and ears to something my wife needs from me now. I’m rambling now bc it’s so late, but I just wanted you to know how important your words are to all of us who long for love and hope. Nick started something very special, with God’s help, and now it’s only fitting that the person who loves him most, will finish the work God had planned for you both from the beginning…………….
    I now know that He has a plan for me and my family too, as hard as it is to figure out sometimes…………..much like Nick’s pain.
    God bless you and your daughter, Alyssa, and maybe say a prayer for me and my wife if you have time someday.
    I will pray for the THREE of you as well, bc I know Nick is still there with you every hour of every day…………

  29. Love Bomb 2 says:

    Alyssa, you and Austyn are inspirations for us all on how to have strength through unfathomable odds. Thank you for sharing your story, and thank you for sharing that INCREDIBLE video on Fathit. Though I don’t know you, you and your little one are in my thoughts and I wish for you only the most hopeful, brightest future possible.

  30. Holly B says:

    What a beautiful blog post. I can feel your love through your words. Lifting you up in prayer from snowy Indiana!

  31. Jen says:

    Thinking of you and your adorable daughter. I know that Nick is looking down on you and is very proud.

  32. Terry in Arkansas says:

    I am so sorry to learn of your heartbreaking loss. I am amazed at your strength and know that you a your little daughter will be fine with time. It is a devastating blow. No amount of time can fully prepare you.

    I am touched that Nick made these wonderful videos for you and your daughter. They will give you some degree of comfort in the difficult days, weeks, and months ahead. Know that people all over the world care and send love your way and prayers on your behalf.

    Stay strong. You are blessed.

  33. Julie says:

    Your story is heart-wrenching and heartening all at the same time. Thank you for being willing to share it with the world! Praying that you will be blessed and continue to find peace and hope daily as you face whatever lies ahead.

  34. Joan says:

    Dearest Alyssa,
    I am sending you long-distance hugs and prayers. You and your family are such an inspiration. I know that Nick will watch over you and your daughter, always, and his message of love and acceptance will inspire many, all over the world.

  35. Lin says:

    Thank you for sharing the story of your powerful love and incredible strength with us. Love and light to you.

  36. Vic says:

    Thank you for sharing and inspiring the rest of us to keep going as you have done. Continue the fantastic and amazing work :)

  37. Danielle says:

    So very touched by your story, your video, and your example to praise God in every season. I’m praying for you and for sweet Austyn.

  38. Lisa says:

    What an amazing story to run across. Recently my husband and I have been through a lot of changes. He was the bread winner and he lost his job, we recently moved out of our home and in with a friend. It devastated me to have to feel like I had lost so much, but nothing compared to reading your story. It made me really put life in perspective, we have our life together no matter where we live, and two beautiful children as well. I am a devout Christian and trust God with our lives but even in that you can get doubtful at times. Thanks so much for caring to share especially the video, it will be such a wonderful gift to your daughter some day. God always has a plan and the plan for you and your daughter will be a great one.

    Be Blessed

  39. Monique says:

    I do not know you, but I ran accross this blog and the Youtube video surfing the net on “accident.” But, I am for sure that God intended me to read it. I have been so blessed by your story and strength and it has inspired me to rebuild a once close relationship with Christ. We get so busy and forget those things that matter… I thank you and have peace in knowing that at least one life (this one) has been changed. God bless you.

  40. Jorge Rojas says:

    Hello Alyssa and Austin,

    I am writing from Costa Rica, I just saw Nick story and was very moved, he inspired me to be a better father and try my best to always be there for my family and set aside the things not really important and enjoy the little time we have.

    God bless your family.

  41. lucy says:

    I think that you were blessed for having Nick as your life partner, god took him away (unfortunately) but he reward you with a beautiful daugther. Sometimes we think that life is unfaire with us but it also give us plenty of memmories that we treasure in our hearts, like the one you wrote below. Really you and Nick are an examples of people who never give up. Thanks for sharing your experiencies, they are really moving. You teach me to never give up and that you have to go on even if you faced the worst things.
    Alyssa, stay strong, you can always find the support that you need. God bless you and your little daughter.
    With respect from Argentina

  42. Andrea says:

    You guys aré amazing! The most wonderful example of how to live a life which i will try to teach my 2 years kid. Lots of love from Spain.

  43. Soumya says:

    Thankyou for sharing your moving, trying and beautiful testament with us. You are such a strong woman and I pray that you and your daughter will always live as lights shining upon the grace and love of God and your late husband.
    God bless, you are held in my prayers.

  44. Jaime says:

    Alyssa, I am so thankful that you and your daughter have the beautiful memories of being truly loved. So many people never experience that. It makes you who you are. It gives you strength and self-esteem even in the hardest times when you recall that someone totally loved you. Love is eternal.

  45. Jean says:

    You are so strong. Whenever you get a little down, remember you can get support and lots of love from us. Hugs <3

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