Chioma and Tita Obii-Obioha - Take Time for Romance
Today's guest is Chioma of Love. 'n Words.com. She says of one of the reasons she started her blog, "my family will tell you that I am a hopeless romantic. I love love LOVE “love” and coming up with little romantic ideas. So, I figured that I would channel all that romantic energy to a blog that celebrates love and romance in a fun and passionate way." She is currently running a series of thank you's to her husband as a pledge to Twenty days of Good Good Lovin'. Enjoy her marriage avowals below.
1. How We Met:
Funny Story...My husband and I have actually known each other pretty much all our lives, but we never ever spoke. We had some mutual friends and acquaintances, grew up in the same city (Aba) and even went to the same church. Our parents were friendly with each other as well but we never made that connection. That all changed when we all went home to Nigeria for Christmas in 2006. His parents were celebrating a marriage milestone and had a celebratory event which my mom and siblings went to. I was often the last one to go home because the semester always ended late for me. As a result, I was unable to attend the event.
My sisters spoke with his brothers and met him there as well. Fast forward several days and it was time for my sister, Ure, to leave Nigeria and return to the US. While waiting in line at the airport, who does she see? Him! She immediately went up to him to strike up a conversation and realized that he and I lived in New Jersey. She immediately gave him my cell phone number and recommended that we speak. She didn't necessarily intend for us to have romantic relationship; she just thought it would be a good idea to strike up a friendship with someone from home.
Alas, my cell phone was stolen on that trip. So, there was no way for him to get in touch with me when I got back from Nigeria in January. When I spoke with Ure, she suggested that I give him a call with my apartment phone. I was very hesitant because, even though I truly only intended to call him as an acquaintance, I didn't want to give him the impression that I was calling because I like him. It just wasn't my type of thing. However, I pushed my misgivings aside and gave him a call. That first call lasted more than 2 hours, and we began to stay in touch with each other off and on from then. Eventually, our conversations became more and more frequent and we finally went out to the movies together.
We still didn't make it anything "official" until I went home for Christmas again. While there, he said that he missed me like crazy and expected me to call him often. Again, because I wasn't sure what we were and didn't want to give him reason to think I liked him too much (even though I really did ), I didn't call him for the 3 weeks or so I was there. He later told me that he drove himself crazy waiting for my calls everyday and even hearing about me from some mutual friends and acquaintances.
Upon my return, he wasted no time in taking me out on a date - and this time, it was absolutely clear that it was a date. Not too long after, he made it "official" (which I love. I love when men are chivalrous in that way) and here, we are today. He was my first boyfriend and my first love because I had never really let anyone in before. It has been an amazing journey.
2. We've been married since July 2011, so we're definitely still newly weds.
We plan to keep our "newly wed fever" for the rest of our lives, by God's grace. We believe that if we've been able to stay so fascinated with and in love with each other after all those years of dating, we can stay the same way in our marriage. We pray for God's grace.
3. How He Proposed:
He proposed in a waterfront restaurant. It was particularly sweet because he proposed in the restaurant he took me to on our first real date. Also, he had asked me to put together a dinner with many of my closest friends who have become his good friends, too. I still cannot believe that he had the ring around the entire time and I had absolutely no clue. His surprise was nearly messed up by our waiter, though. He had called the restaurant ahead of time to tell them what he intended to do, and the waiter nearly let the cat out of the bag. It definitely made me a little suspicious, but to actually have that moment happen the way it did was breath taking.
He started by talking to me and whispering sweet words but I thought nothing of it because he did that all the time. Then, he told me to dare him to stand and tell the whole table what I meant to him. A little suspicious but also knowing that he hates giving public speeches, I dared him. He stood up, began to talk and the turned to me and said, "I'd like to ask for your hand in marriage!" When he got down on one knee with the ring, I was shaking and my face was covered. It took me so long to say, "Yes," that he nervously put the ring on my right hand. I immediately gave him a huge hug and a kiss and my friends and his brother went wild! I wouldn't change it for the world.
4. Favorite Part of Being Married to My Husband:
How can I count all the ways? I love the fact that every day I wake up, I know that I belong to someone absolutely and he belongs to me. I love the way he puts me first in everything he does. I love the fact that my happiness is his priority. I love the fact that we have committed ourselves to each for the rest of my life - that, no matter what, we both have someone in our corner. He is exactly what I prayed for!
5. Hardest Part of Being Married:
Again, how can I count all the ways? LOL. Just Kidding! For me, it has been letting go of several personal misgivings from childhood/the past that I have carried with me. For instance, when we argue or don't agree about something, it's easy for me to forget all the good things he has done and focus on that one mistake he has made or to forget how much he loves me and immediately focus on that one moment. As he always tells me, "I love you and I am not your enemy. When we don't agree or I do something you don't like, it doesn't mean I don't love you. Don't forget all the other great things I do." Many times, baggage from the past (be it childhood, previous relationships, what you've seen from your parents, etc.) can be difficult to overcome, but with prayer, God's grace and the right partner, healing is possible. It's always a journey, but it's possible.
We don't have children yet. We decided to take just a little bit of time to enjoy being married, have some fun and settle down before we have children.
7. The Key to a happy relationship:
I'm always still learning, but I think it's important to keep the friendship going. I think husband and wife have to be best friends and partners who truly enjoy each other's company. Communication is also extremely important. Again, I'm still learning because I'm not always great at expressing things that bother me, but it's extremely important. Also, take time for romance and touch. Those little "I love you"s and little touches and kisses done daily really matter. Finally, at least for us, keep God where He belongs - right at the center. When all other counsel fails, His never does!