Monday, May 21, 2012

The Engagement

I believe that all things brought to one's life, to give it profound meaning, is all done divinely by accident.  The places we choose to visit, the decisions we make and the people we encounter; are all moments intricately placed within our lives on purpose.  Everything is done, at the exact moment it is done, for a reason.  You are meant to go there, to do something and to have particular individuals cross your path.  This theory made itself known in my life (yet again) just last week.

On May 5, 2012, two individuals indirectly entered my life, to remind me of something I had forgotten for some time.  Through their own experience, they gave me back something profound.  The amazing part of it all is that they have no idea how one special moment in their lives rekindled something that was lost in mine for so long.  So today, I would like to dedicate this blog to them.

May 5, 2012, was a day like any other for most of us.  Yet, for Christopher Di Tomaso, today was special.  It was a day that he had been planning for some time.  This was the day that he would ask his beloved lady, Allison Gillies, to be his wife. 

As family and friends waited in anticipation, for the day's events to unfold, Allison had no idea what magical journey lay ahead. 

That evening, Allison got ready for a night out with some friends, to watch a movie.  Ironically, they had made plans to watch "The 5 Year Engagement", which was showing at "The 5 Drive In" where 5 years ago the happy couple had their very first date.  Coincidence?  Well, that may have been what Allison would have said, prior to this evening.  However, there was nothing coincidental about any of this day's events.  It was all carefully orchestrated by one man, the love of her life-Christopher.

Here is how it all unfolded: 

The first time I saw this, it sent shivers down my spine.  It truly is the most beautiful profession of love that I have ever seen in my life.  I felt butterflies for the first time in ages.  In my own life, countless heartbreak has made me forget about loving anyone.  Only I hadn't realized it until this moment.  I've been walking around aimlessly, just living my "day to day life" without love.  At some point, I had denounced the existence of love within my life.  I had lost all faith that real love was out there.  I had convinced myself that love was only for the lucky and the strong - and I am neither of those things any longer.  I have forgotten about even wanting to love anyone.  How sad is that?  What's worse is that i know that I am not alone in this reasoning that I have made about love. So, I felt that it was my duty to share this with the world, in hopes that it will "awaken" the spirit of love within us all. 

Chris and Allison, thank you so much for lifting the heavy/dark weight that had made a home upon my heart for far too long.   It was this beautiful depiction of your love for one another, that made me believe in love again.  Not just any kind of love either.  But real/crazy/amazing kind of love.  Complete love, where the experience makes you truly alive.  Where every sense is heightened and every emotion magnified.  You have changed my life and I wanted you both to know that.  Watching the two of you has rekindled what I have always both believed and known:  That love is possible.  I knew that once and now I know it again because of you.  From the bottom of my heart, thank you!

In honor of that love, I have written a little something for you both.

"We have come here today in celebration of your promise to one another. A promise that you have pledged within your hearts. One of admiration, respect and love. A vow that one day soon shall be witnessed by God above. A love that in times, may be tried and tested will never be broken, because your love will always be evident and seen. Even when words are left unspoken. For God has blessed you both with a keeper for your heart. One that will love, honor and always know your worth, even when apart. Where once two hearts, two souls and two journeys dwelled apart, are now infinitely bound by a ring. Symbolizing no beginning and no end for the love that lives within your hearts. "

Congratulations to you both! May you always have more love, more passion, more laughter and more happiness together than you could ever know what to do with.
~ Always ~


  1. First Off, You are such an amazing writer Gia. You alone can make anyone fall in love with anything just by the way you write about it. So kudos to you for making this exquisite keep sake for the happy couple.

    Second, Chris my man, you are a God!!! (LOL) What you did for your girl was incredible. I'm sure you made her feel like the luckiest woman on earth. A feeling that EVERY lady should feel from her man - Especially at a time like this. You made most of us feel/look like chumps no doubt, but good on you Bro! Maybe it's time that some of us guys get a wake up call on stuff like this.

    Anyway, just wanted to comment on the blog and to say Congratulations to Chris & Allison. Have a great life together!!!!!

    Sam Morales

  2. Hi Gia,

    I just had to comment on this piece you did on the engagement. It was so real and so touching. You're right, it was definitely something that should be shared with the world. Glad you did.

    Please send along my best wishes for a happy life together, to Christopher and Allison.


  3. Gia, Gia, Gia...

    Once again you have managed to make a grown man get all teary-eyed and weepy.

    This was without a doubt one of the best proposals I have ever seen. Heck, mine included!!!!!

    I'm sure that Christopher made Allison feel like an absolute princess, do doubt! So will you be writing about the wedding too? I can only imagine how that will all go!!!!!

    Best wishes to the future bride and groom.
    Get ready for one hell of a ride (marriage)

    Adam (continued reader and supporter) :)

  4. Hey Gia!
    OMG.. I heard about this on Z103 from Ashley Greco. This is her friend right?
    WOW! Nice to put faces to the story.
    To Chris – NICE JOB BRO!!! And the bling is really good! Now every other guy in the free world is gonna have to measure up. Thanks! LOL!
    To Allison – You looked really surprised…and happy. Thank God you said YES!
    I think that’s what us guys always worry about. If she’ll say yes. Can you imagine going to all that trouble and she said no? OMG.. I would have a stroke right there!
    All in all – great performance. Well Done Bro!
    Best of luck!!


  5. Hey Everyone!

    Thank you so much for all the comments and compliments on this blog.

    @Adam ~ A wedding piece? Hmm.. never thought about it. Something to think about I suppose.

    @Sam & Karen ~ Thank you for the kind words. It was truly my pleasure to share this story with all of you.

    @Joe ~ YES! This is the same story you heard Ashley speak of, on Z103.5. In fact, Ashley and Allison are the best of friends. As for your second question: Something tells me that Ashley may in fact be in the bridal party on this one. However, feel free to ask her yourself *giggles*

  6. Gia,

    I'm almost at a loss for words after reading what you wrote. There were a few times I got a little choked up while watching the video or people's reaction to it but I never thought I would while reading someone's comment after the fact. Your words are the most sincere and heartfelt I've seen in a long time.

    When deciding to travel down the proposal road I was only thinking about how to make it memorable and heartfelt for Allison. Never did ever imagine that it would impact someone other than her but I'm really glad it did.

    It's nice to know that someone's actions can envoke a positive response as opposed to the negatives ones we see much of the time. I'm so happy that you believe in true love again and the fact that I was the conduit is amazing to me. Feels like something I'd see in the movies. Romance is alive. :)

    Sam, Karen, Adam, thank you everyone else for your kind words as well and sorry for those who've been put on the spot! All proposals that come from the heart are great in my opinion.

    Joe, Yes Allison and Ashley are best friends. We all hang out almost every weekend. I was never nervous about her saying yes until about 2 minutes before kneeling in front of the car. I guess it was right around when then trailer started playing hah. Ashley is indeed in the wedding party as Allison's maid of honour. :)

    Thanks again everyone.

  7. Never give up on love! I think this is generally the ryhme of reason here.
    It's really great that there are people who teach us important lessons every day. I'm glad that Chris and Allison taught you one about "true love" Gia. Because if you never loved again, you'd certainly be robbing the world of the precious heart that you possess.
    Love is out there...for everyone, but don't you dare look for it. It will find you when the time is right!

    Chris, Allison... All the best to you both. May you always remember how happy you are at this moment in your lives - even when times are trying. Think of this time and allow it to pull you through it.


    1. I only, "met" Gia after proposing so I don't know her very well. But I certainly agree that she has a precious heart. It's a shame she's been living under the, "shadow" of love until recently. I'm glad she's saying she's past it now though and hope she finds someone to be at her side soon! :)


  8. Hi Everyone!

    Thanks again for your continued comments on this blob piece. You are all truly wonderful fans! When I first decided to write this, it was mainly a "thank you" piece to Chris and Allison for what they did for me, but also something for them to have as a "keep sake" of this very special time in their lives. I never imagined that I would be getting all the comments, blurbs and the abundance of emails that I have received. It's truly an amazing thing. I guess it's spring time and love is definitely "IN THE AIR" for all of us.

    For those of you who have emailed privately, and do not wish to be in the "lime light" thank you. I will certainly pass along your best wishes to the future "Bride and Groom".

    For those of you who may not have gathered this already, Chris himself has posted his comments here for all of you to see. (He forgot to sign it, so it remains read as "anonymous"). Thank you Chris for your kind words and gesture toward my readers. They have truly fallen in love with your love story!!!

    @Joe - Well, as Chris mentioned, Ashley is the maid of honor and definitely taken for this event. "sorry" :(

    @ Rosa - Thank you for your comments. I have always been in search for love, but perhaps you're right! Looking for it may not be the thing to do. At this point in my life, I'm open (thanks to these two amazing people) So let life and love take me at will. I'M NOW READY!!! :)

    Have an amazing day, my dearest fans!

    May your life be filled with passion...always!

    Thanks again for your support of LIFE AFX! Without you, it and I would be nothing!!!!

  9. It's a great keepsake and I think Allison has commented either via personal email or on your facebook wall Gia.

    I'd love to see the emails people have been sending but definitely want to respect their privacy.

    Joe - Ashley is dating a good friend of mine, Jonas, who's also in my wedding party but I will see what I can do for you! haha.

    Chris <--- I signed my name this time!

  10. Hey Gia,

    Just wanted to leave a quick comment about this blog.
    You have such a sweet and humble way of writing. It resonates a lot with your readers and fans alike, I'm sure.

    A comment for Chris:
    I had a marriage proposal once. NO THOUGHT PROCESS WHATSOEVER! It was almost as if he was forced to do it against his will. It made me feel so horrible and I declined. So you're wrong, not ALL proposals come from the heart.

    I really loved the way you put time, thought and effort into yours. From the looks of things, your girl loved it.


    1. Hi Sara,

      You're absolutely right, not all proposals coem from the heart and that's really sad. What I am saying though is ones that DO come from the heart are ALL going to be great in their own way.


    2. Hi Sara,

      I'm sorry that your proposal left you feeling anything but special. You were right to decline something that made you feel "less-worthy" of what your heart deserves.

      Always appreciate that choices are just that, choices and we have to make them every day. Some, harder than others, but we always need to be true to ourselves. Someday (if it hasn't happened already) the right proposal will come along and you will know that it's right! :)

      Thank you for your kinds words on the blog. So happy you enjoyed it!

      Wishing you much love..always!


  11. Ciao Gia / Chris

    Gia – totally awesome how this blog is being kept alive by comments. That’s amazing! You must be so proud. If you aren’t well….you totally should be cuz you ROCK!!

    Chris- YOU ROCK TOO! You are actually taking time out of your day to comment on this blog post and to us (the strangers who loved it)
    Tell Allison to come and say hello too. I’d love to hear what was going through her mind when she first caught on. Her face gave the “what the F*8k” kinda look..LOL! So Ashley is definitely taken eh? DAMN! Not that I’m surprised or shocked really. I think I would be if she wasn’t lol! Gia did mention to me that she had a boyfriend after my post, but thanks for clarifying. Ahhh a man can dream I guess.. LOL! She seems really awesome, as does your lady, so again – not surprised that they’re “BBF’S”

    Gia – speaking of which.. what was Ashley’s reaction to all of this? Was she “in the loop” or not? Maybe she should stop in and comment with us as well. That would be AWESOME!’s a selfish request just for me, but what the hell!!!

    Again, great blog, great proposal, great job on this entire thing..period!

    P.S. Z103.5 For Ever!!! (Gia, you do an amazing job promoting and supporting the station..always! WHY THE HELL AREN’T YOU WORKING THERE??)


    1. Hi Joe,

      Your comments to LIFE AFX are always humorous, joyful and full of life - just like you! :)

      Yes, Chris is very sweet to come by and comment on the comments here. I am very grateful for that!

      From my conversations with the Lovely Ms. Grecco, she was quite nervous for her best friend and truly hoped that everything would go off without a hitch. There was mention of butterflies, and much happiness surrounding the entire event and feelings toward both Chris and Allison. She is beyond thrilled for her friends and is excited to what the future brings. With all that said, she was very happy how it all unfolded and delighted that it was a special/beautiful moment for her best friend.

      Regarding your comments about Z103.5: I've been a proud listener and avid supporter of the station for many, many years - as so many other fans are. However, I have never really thought about working for them (much less any kind of radio station before). Although, I've been told that I do have a "radio voice" much of my life; I do not hold any background in the radio broadcasting field. So, I'd be an amateur at best..LOL. Nevertheless, thanks for the vote of confidence! :)

      My main promotional focus is: DJ Danny D, and I fully support him both as an Artist and personality. This is not to say that I do not support the other personalities of the radio station, because I do whole-heartedly. However, beyond the writing component of things, LIFE AFX is also an organization that promotes Writers/Singers/Musicians and DJ's. Being that DJ Danny D is a DJ and artist in his own right, my main focus is with him.

  12. There is only one word that comes to mind whenever I see this “engagement clip” on line. Yes, I too Gia, have watched this MORE THAN ONCE  that gay for a guy to admit? Oh well, there it is!!!!
    The word is: INCREDIBLE!
    I’m looking for my very own way to propose to my girl this coming fall, so this was truly inspirational.
    Thanks to Gia and Chris for sharing!
    So Chris >>>>> Was this entire ordeal as difficult to think of, plan and pull of as it looked? My hands were shaking for you just watching that clip.
    I don’t know if I will have the courage/strength to muster up something romantic. All I can think about is just getting it done. Ohh and yes, now thanks to Joe up top there and his 2 cents, now I’m worried about whether or not she will even say yes. GOD THIS IS SCARY!!
    Do women have ANY IDEA what a man goes through at a time like this???? I don’t think you all do!!
    Anyways, great blog, great story, great job Chris. Congratulations Allison and Chris
    Oh..and Congratulations to the lovely Maid of Honor too – ASHLEY GRECCO! She’s amazing on radio. Glad you are ALL friends!!


    1. Paolo,

      Thanks for your comments and no it's not, "gay" to admit that you enjoyed it. Just shows appreciation is all.

      Glad I can be of inspiration to you. The trick is to find something that will be memorable and special for the both of you. For Allison and I it made sense to have the proposal revolve around where our first date was.

      The idea was pretty easy to come up with as was what I wanted to say to her in the proposal. I started planning in November of last year asking permissions from the property management at the 5 drive in if I could use their screens, the copyrights, equipment etc. It took a lull after November until March of this year because 5 drive in shut down for the season. Then I started the planning again getting the ring, script, equipment, trailer, timing orchestrated.

      I more or less ad libbed my speaking part in the video. I tried to re-record it after I got the first take out but it never sounded as good as the first one. I'd like to mention that the audio in the video when I start speaking is the audio captured by the recording devices in the car which is why it sounds a little rough and choppy. The original trailer is clean :). I also had to get Richard Correll to do his speaking parts and edit the audio and video together. It took about 40 hrs total for all recording and editing.

      Anyways, as for the trailer portion of the script that was a little bit more difficult to come up with so that it captured out story without letting on too much what was about to transpire.

      Lastly, the execution was probably the most difficult. I got a lot of things done by the skin of my teeth. For instance, I'm living in Sudbury right now for work - a 4 hr drive away - and the ring shop that is in Mississauga closed at 7. I got there at 6:45 on the Friday after driving in from Sudbury. Again, the equipment setup was completed at 130am the night before only because the manager was nice enough to stay after the Friday night screenings and help work out of the tech kinks. Then we had to get Allison there without tipping her off. It was a bit stressful at times!

      Ok sorry for my lack of logical flow while typing. I hope you get the gist of it. Good luck with your proposal and it's not as terrifying as you think. I was only a bit nervous as the trailer came on the screen. It was an amazing feeling to see her so happy and run into my arms. I trust you will have the same feeling when you propose to your lucky lady.



  13. Hi Paolo,

    WOW! This is a really special time in your life, congratulations to you! :)

    As a woman, believe me when I tell you that we absolutely know that it's a really crazy time for any men about to propose. The pressure is on and there is a lot at stake. However, like anything else in life worth having, it's all about taking that plunge without knowing what the answers/outcome will be. Just trust in your heart that the love you have for your lady is real and worthwhile.

    I'm sure that however you plan to propose it will be magical. If she truly loves you, anything you do will be amazing. Trust me.

    I think I speak for women everywhere when I say that all we ask for is that you make it somewhat sentimental/special. After all, we've only been waiting for THIS MOMENT all of our lives :) So no pressure.. *giggles*

    Best of luck!

  14. Hello Fans!

    I just wanted to thank you all again for the continued comments and support of this blog piece - The Engagement. I am thrilled that you all enjoyed it.

    A very special thank you once again, to Chris, for dropping in every now and then to answer some questions and comments that you all have. Please do keep us updated with how the wedding plans are progressing. I understand that the lastest is the date and location of the wedding (as you so posted above, in our quick chat box) For those of you who missed it, the wedding is set for: AUGUST 2013, in beautiful - NIAGARA ON THE LAKE - vineyard! It sounds absolutely lovely, Chris.

    Congratulations once again to the lovely couple: Christopher and Allison

    All the best to you both-always!!!

  15. Wedding planning is a lot harder than expected. Seems that a lot of the venues in the N-O-T-L area aren't as willing to work with us as we were hoping. So much for customer service. I mean we are spending a considerable about of money to have a one night party, the least these venues could do is bend a few rules or times limits to make the day run a little more smooth for us. We have 14 months so we're not stressing too much but we do want to nail a venue down soon. Our current living circumstance doesn't afford us much liberty to visit venues together often.

    I will keep you posted from time to time on how it's progressing.


    1. Weddings are truly one of the hardest things to plan, Chris. However, don't give up. If you and Allison have your heart set on something particular, then you should have that. If not N-O-T-L than somewhere similar. There are many, many beautiful places you could strive for. Meet with them and see what you can both agree upon.

      I'm so excited for you both. Although planning can be tiresome and frustrating at times, it's so much fun too. Don't forget to have fun with everything you do/plan.