We’re engaged!

We’re engaged!

It was not a big, romantic gesture. Neither of us got down on one knee, hold a flash mob, or write it across the sky. We talked about it one day, nodded, smiled, and said, “Let’s do it.”

Theo and I decided to to get engaged in mid-August. I wanted to tell everyone I knew and some people that I didn’t know – the pizza guys around the corner, the cops at the train station, whoever would listen, or not listen. I didn’t really care whether they listened, I just wanted to tell them. But we decided not to tell anyone until we had my engagement ring.

“Who’s buying the ring?” Theo asked.

“You are,” I said.

I explained that women, popularly, wear two rings. An engagement ring is presented first and then a wedding ring at the marriage ceremony.

“What do men wear when they’re engaged?” he asked.

“Nothing,” I said.

“Well, that’s bullshit.”

While it took me a couple of weeks to find a ring I love, I think it took Theo about ten minutes on Google. He selected a black tungsten carbide ring. Tungsten carbide is extremely hard, resistant to scratching, and used in industrial machinery, cutting tools, abrasives, armour-piercing rounds, other tools and instruments, and jewellery. And it’s black because he wears black everyday. It’s perfect for him.

Theo doesn’t wear any jewellery and he was apprehensive about wearing a ring. He said he’d probably just wear it during special occasions, but he hasn’t taken it off.

As for me, a couple of weeks and a dozen jewellery stores later, I fell in love with this rose gold ring (and the accompanying band not shown). Theo (reluctantly) forked out the big bucks, but I still had to wait. The bridal set had to be made and it was going to take eight weeks (it took 10).

When we both finally had our rings, the US election happened. I was very upset and so were most of my friends. I didn’t feel like telling anyone and I was worried that the mood wasn’t going to improve. Theo encouraged me to call my family and tell them. I did and they were happy and then I was happy. And I was reminded that we have to make our own happiness sometimes.

We told his family next. Then we announced it on Facebook. And there was an outpouring of love.

Everyone has questions. When? Where? What are you going to wear? We don’t have any answers. My family and most of my friends are in America. Theo’s family and most of his friends live here in Australia. We understand that people can’t or won’t fly. So, we’re going to have conversations, explore options, and get creative. But later. Right now, we’re just going to enjoy being engaged, enjoy Christmas, and ring in the New Year.

Stay tuned!



  • Jen


    • Cosette Paneque

      Thank you, Jen 🙂

  • Julie McMahon

    Congratulations! I’ve withdrawn from the blogging world but when I saw your previous blog about the election, I was going to comment (I so feel your pain). Glad I waited- I prefer the happiness of this post! All the best to you and Theo. 🙂

    • Cosette Paneque

      Thank you, Julie 🙂 How come you’re not blogging anymore?

      • I still make an occasional attempt, but I needed to take time away from writing this year. There were so many bits and pieces of my life that still hadn’t been sorted, and I was overwhelmed.
        Then, my grandson’s mother went back to work, and I took on two twelve hour days of caring for him, which has been a bonus. I adore it. However, his father, who has days off in the working week, and cared for him on the those days, was laid low with his old back injury three months ago. I was just getting back into blogging mode, when I had to step in and do five days a week. I’m optimistic that I’ll be back to two days by the end of the school holidays.
        To sum up, I haven’t had time! 🙂

        • Cosette Paneque

          I hear ya. I didn’t blog as much as I would have liked to. A lot of the expat bloggers I followed when I first moved to Australia have moved on to other things. It’s understandable. Have a happy New Year, Juli!

  • Ben

    Congratulations to you both! 🙂

  • Congratulations on your engagement! Wonderful news.

    • Cosette Paneque

      Thanks, Juli!