The Story of Us: Our Proposal Story (His)


The story of how I proposed to Tristan. I was walking around this little town in rural central Virginia in the fall of 2015 with one of my college roommates. He was going to photograph the proposal and him and I went out on a drive to find the perfect spot for such an occasion. Tristan and I had been through a lot over the course of our short dating relationship. Rural Virginia will always have a special place in my heart because there is a peace that is resoundingly present in that countryside that I found very comforting when so much was going on in our long distance relationship. When I think about the stillness and peace I experienced that day exploring the mountains and forests of Virginia, all I could think about is Psalm 46:10. God’s inspired Word says “Be Still, and know that I am God.” That setting humbles your mind, and your essence as you stand in awe of God’s Handiwork in creation. There isn’t any other place in His universe that would be more fitting to propose to Tristan. That was why I was so drawn to the quaint city of Buchanan. Staged perfectly in one of God’s greatest scapes, the Blue Ridge Mountains. It was breathtaking. The tranquility that surrounded us when I took your hand and walked you out on that 1800’s suspension bridge was such a surreal moment for me. Time stopped and so did my breathing as I pulled the dainty twine that was wrapped around the glass bottle I dropped in James River beneath us the night before. It felt like hours pulling that note in a bottle up to the center of the bridge where my bride was eagerly waiting and standing by my side. As I pulled the cork out of the bottle and took the note out I couldn’t help but tremble, shake, and tear up as I began to read that unforgettable letter I wrote to you. I truly felt the blessing of the Lord bestowed on you and I in that moment as I dropped to one knee. I’ll never forget the way you looked at me when you said yes, and I couldn’t try to pen it down if my life depended on it. All I knew was that day, and today, you made me the happiest man in the world.

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We are Ben and Tristan Handley - a husband and wife photography team promoting authentic marriages and documenting love stories through timeless photographs. We provide educational resources and encouragement for young couples who value devotion and commitment.


We are fine art wedding and anniversary photographers serving Columbus, Ohio and beyond.

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