The Big Bang Theory star is engaged to Karl Cook — and if her emotional reaction to his proposal is any indication, she’s over the moon about it. In honor of the couple’s happy news, here’s a look back at their love story.
Start of something new
Cuoco, 32, first began hinting at her relationship with Cook, a 26-year-old professional equestrian and son of billionaire Scott Cook, in March 2016 with a slew of adorable Instagram photos.
It was her first relationship after splitting from her tennis player husband Ryan Sweeting in the fall of 2015, when she filed for divorce after 21 months of marriage. (The proceedings were finalized in May 2016.)
In a candid interview with Cosmopolitan for its April 2016 issue, the actress said her divorce “changes the way I look at marriage, and that makes me sad,” — though she maintained it “does not change the way that I look at love.”
“I thought I’d have a baby by now!” she confessed. “You see your life going one way, and then it’s the direct opposite way. I’m waking up going, Oh my God, my life just flipped upside down.”
That being said, she wasn’t ruling out the possibility for romance down the line.
“I cannot wait to be in love again,” she said. “I don’t feel like I am ready yet which is so different for me. I dive into everything.”
A special shared interest
“Even when I was going through [my divorce], I was like, ‘Oh, I’m never going to love again’ — I can’t even pretend to say that, ’cause it’s not me,” she said during an appearance on CBS This Morning in May 2016. “It’s not my heart. I know that’s not me, and I know I will again. And I’ve actually never been happier.”
“I’m excited to see what the future holds,” she added. “I have to say, I’m happier than I’ve ever been. There are just special people in my life now, and the show is doing great and I’ve got my horses.”
Of her new beau, Cuoco said with a smile: “He’s special.”
“I think meeting people that are involved [in the same things as you] — I think that the horse connection is special. He’s special,” she said, noting the fact that they both share a love of horses (the actress has been riding for years, and has several horses of her own) and animals in general. (Cuoco later revealed that the two actually met at a horse show, gushing that she “finally found my horse guy.”)
Cuoco reiterated how important their common interests are during an interview with PEOPLE in August 2016.
“When you share something so special, some sort of connection — for us, it’s horses, but anything two people share — you have that common goal and you know that you want the same things in life, day to day, and in the future,” she explained. “It just sets you on a better path. Having a lot in common is really important and we definitely have a lot in common. I think that that’s what makes us so strong and really happy.”
Ever the supportive boyfriend, Cook has no problem with Cuoco’s close relationship with her ex-boyfriend — and Big Bang costar — Johnny Galecki. In March, the actress took to Instagram to share a photo of a hilarious exchange that went down when Cook came to visit her on set.
“Ummmmmm then this happened,” she captioned a photo of Cook cuddling up to Galecki, whom she previously dated for two years before breaking things off in 2010.
“@sanctionedjohnnygalecki get off my man!” she quipped.
Of course, it was all in good fun, and Cuoco also shared an adorable photo of her and Cook.
“Can you tell I [love] when this guy comes to visit me at work?!” she captioned the shot of herself planting a kiss on his cheek.
Traveling around the world
The couple also share an adventurous streak and took an epic trip to Australia with Cook’s family this summer.
Ready for the next step
“He’s great,” Cuoco gushed to PEOPLE of her beau in August. “He’s got a big bulldog and many horses and luckily, I found a guy who likes dogs as much as me. That’s on my number one list — ‘Must love dogs!’ “
“We ride together and we both have a significant amount of horses in separate ranches,” she explained. “So we keep that separate, but we’ve done horse shows together and we travel together and that has definitely been a big part of our relationship.”
Asked about a potential engagement down the line, Cuoco said she’s “open to anything”
“I don’t know what the path is going to take,” she admitted. “But I’m very happy right now.”
On Cuoco’s 32nd birthday Thursday, the happy couple finally took the next step: They got engaged.
“Still crying,” she captioned a video of herself sobbing after Cook proposed. “Every part of this night has been perfection just like you @mrtankcook. I love you forever!”