Diary Of A Real Bride: Steven & Diane: A Quest To Pop The Question
The ‘Diary Of A Real Bride‘ blog series continues with our newest contributors, Dubai-based Diane Falez Omari and her charismatic American-born fiancé, Steven. This power couple will be sharing their honest musings about their wedding planning journey with our readers, penning down the highs, the lows, and everything in between. Today, Diane takes us through her surprise proposal, which took place in one of Dubai’s creative hubs, Al Quoz in their favourite restaurants and in front of their most dear loved ones. Over to you, Diane.
After a swipe right that would change our lives forever, Steven and I had our first date in Dubai in August 2020. It wasn’t love at first sight by any means, in an unromantic setting and right after work, but somehow, we grew on each other tremendously over the following months.
On the 12th of December in the same year, following many ups and downs, we made our relationship official. We couldn’t stay away from each other and spent the next few months in a honeymoon phase, learning each other’s quirks, signing up for a joint gym membership, travelling to Turkey, and adopting Dim Sum, our Lhasa Apso puppy. We found ourselves more in love and happier than we could imagine.
It took about a year for me to begin suggesting that we take the next step, and I’m about as subtle as a jackhammer. We eventually took a romantic trip to the Maldives, and even my family was anticipating a proposal.
It didn’t happen.
I was wondering what the delay was all about, while Steven insisted, he was waiting for the right time. I had my acrylics and lash extensions ready for months on end, just in case.
The Big Moment
On April 16th, 2022, my friend Kawtar invited me to a girls’ night out, insisting we must “dress to impress”. It was a little suspicious, considering this girlfriend always leaned towards casual outings. Regardless, Kawtar came over that night and we left together in my car.
As soon as we began the drive, Kawtar asked me if there was a flower shop nearby since it was one of the girls’ birthdays, so I took her to a neighbourhood store around the corner. The florist, John, who knew Steven and I well, then handed me a bouquet of 50 white roses with a huge smile on his face. I was in shock, and instantly started tearing up.
There was a clue in the bouquet that read: “As the Italians say, ‘The Terrace’ is a perfect place to begin a love story”. This led us to the place where I first met Steven: La Terrazza Restaurant in JLT.
Driving anxiously while Kawtar refused to disclose any further information, I was now wondering if everyone was waiting for her there. Instead, one of the staff handed me a gift bag containing a Polaroid camera, and another clue: “This hidden garden belongs to the Roman 4”.
I instantly realized that this was referring to Ivy’s Secret Garden, an adorable cafe that we would frequent in Al Quoz.
After I noticed my parents’ cars in the parking lot, a wave of adrenaline, joy, and anxiety took over me. With the bouquet in hand, I walked towards Ivy’s knowing what was to come.
As soon as I saw Steven standing there (in an outfit matching mine), and all of my closest friends and family around, I began to sob hysterically. Once the door opened, I was also thrilled to see Dim Sum running towards me, wearing a little pink dress!
I went straight into Steven’s arms and continued to cry for about three minutes, before someone yelled “he hasn’t even asked yet!”
With laughter taking over the room, Steven got down on one knee and opened a little black box to reveal a huge diamond ring. This was another shock to me, because Steven had misled me about the ring, implying he simply couldn’t afford a big diamond and that I would have to settle for a tiny one instead.
I was so excited that I grabbed the ring out of the box myself and wrapped my arms around him, while the sounds of applause and cheers from our loved ones surrounded us. To this day, I cannot recall what he said in his speech.
After an hour of catching up, a photoshoot and endless excitement, we went to Lock Stock & Barrel to continue the celebrations. Even my dad joined us, saying that it was Ramadan, and he was used to staying up late for Suhoor! He had also Googled what to do when you’re invited to a proposal, since it is an uncommon practice in our culture.
It was a proposal for the books, and more than I could have ever dreamed of.
Steven still insists that he had a good opener on Tinder, and that I gave him nothing in return. I disagree. You be the judge.
Don’t forget to visit us next month to see Diane’s latest bridal diary post and to find out how her dream wedding venue search is coming along! You can also follow Diane over at @falezfitness on Instagram for more wedding updates!