How do you make popping the question even more nerve-wracking? Just add sharks.
Michael Benson took his proposal to the next level by asking his girlfriend, Ana Rawls, to marry him while they were swimming with a slew of bull sharks off the coast of Mexico.
The incredible proposal, which was captured on video, features Benson, Rawls and other divers who were as oblivious to Benson's plans as Rawls was.
Actually verbalizing a proposal wasn't really an option, so Benson instead wrote his very important question on a diving slate board and handed it to Rawls. She read it, and replied with an emphatic yes. No word on whether Benson asked the sharks for their blessing.
Benson told Yahoo News in an email that the proposal took a lot of planning. "I started the plan months in advance when I convinced her to get scuba certified before we go to Mexico. She agreed and next thing we know we were in the YMCA pool. 2 weeks later we were NAUI certified scuba divers. We had no clue what we were doing and Mexico would be our first time diving. We did 2 dives before I had the guts to sign up for the Bull Shark dive."
Benson said that while Rawls is a "shark junky," he's more of a "dolphin guy."
"All I could think about was floating with my feet dangling in the water with sharks circling below," he told Yahoo News. "I most certainly did this in the name of love."
The proposal came as a complete surprise to Rawls, according to Benson. "I think being surrounded by sharks was the only thing on her mind," he said. "I will admit that it was pretty high in my thought patterns also. I could not see her facial reactions but she had no problem communicating her excitement. Nobody else had any clue either. When they saw the sign they all started shaking my hand. It was really cool."
He continued, "I was running low on oxygen because I was breathing hard because I about to propose and not to mention 5 ten foot bull sharks circling me. I thought I was going to ruin the dive because when the first person is out of air everyone must surface. I had to just relax and try not to use up my air."
Afraid that a shark might be attracted to a ring, Benson left the bling on the boat. He gave it to her after they surfaced.
The two plan to get married in March, Benson said.
Follow Mike Krumboltz on Twitter (@mikekrumboltz).