A South Carolina Kentucky Derby Love Story

A South Carolina Kentucky Derby Love Story

Kaytlyn and Celeste had their engagement session near a lake in Charleston, South Carolina. They first met at a bar, and had their first date after winning a bet. The two have traveled all over the country, and are tying the knot this coming November. 

 

 

FROM THE BRIDE TO BE 

Have you ever shaken someone’s hand, and in those first five seconds, felt like you’ve known them your entire life? That’s how I felt when I met Kaytlyn.  I’d always thought that our meeting was based on a sequence of fated events. After all, Kaytlyn is originally from Maine, but moved to South Carolina on a whim. Once she got here, we spent two years in the same city without ever meeting.

The serendipitous event that did bring us together was the Kentucky Derby, which we both watched at the same bar. Kaytlyn (being her extroverted and daring self) bought me a drink, and told me if I picked the winning horse she’d buy me dinner too. I picked the horse that I thought had the coolest name: California Chrome. Low and behold, this was the horse that won the Kentucky Derby! I think Kaytlyn was momentarily shocked, but stayed true to her word and bought me dinner. From that day forward, we’ve been inseparable.

The funniest part about our engagement is that we each proposed a week apart from one another without the other’s knowledge. My plan was to propose to Kaytlyn while we were in Maine for her birthday. I enlisted her Godmother’s help to set up a beautiful display on Higgins Beach (near Portland, Maine), which was the beach Kaytlyn often visited growing up. Kaytlyn knows me too well, and picked up on my secrecy. She put the puzzle pieces together, and concocted a plan of her own. I came home the Monday before we were to leave for Maine to find our house covered in roses. Kaytlyn, with all three of our animals in tow, asked me to marry her and I agreed. We then shared a lovely dinner together (slightly burnt due to Kaytlyn’s nerves), then told our family and friends. The hardest part after this was keeping Kaytlyn’s proposal a secret, but somehow we managed it. On Kaytlyn’s birthday, we took a “spontaneous” trip to Higgins Beach, and stumbled upon our beautiful proposal display. Though it was freezing that day, I got down on one knee and asked her to marry me. Thankfully she said yes. We spent the rest of the trip celebrating with all of our family and friends.

It’s a strange experience to go somewhere you’ve never been, to a place so different from what you know, and still feel at home. I suppose that when you’re in love, home isn’t so much a place, but a person. Kaytlyn and I will marry on November 12, 2016 at Harborside East in Charleston, South Carolina, and we can’t wait for the day to come.

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Photography: Marie Rodriguez Photography.

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