Firstly, I hope this post will be an insightful introduction into what was my own loved up journey into Marriage.
Secondly, I will briefly touch upon the personal challenge which followed, where I got lost in it, only to then rediscover myself in it.
Thirdly, Although this post is a separate post, in and off itself, it is also intended to be a small and personal preview into a very special series of posts to come at ‘Nobody’s Victory’.
Just like Marriage, This post will explain itself to you as you continue to go through it. Enjoy.
I went to Israel, well three times actually. The first two times I stayed in a Kibbutz which is situated along Israel’s northern border with Lebanon. I was there for around one and a half years in total.
The third time I was based in Tel Aviv, and it was there where I would meet Ursula, my future Wife.
Both of us were there as part of a larger group of International volunteers. We all worked together, took part in projects together and we cycled along the beach front together to a language school to improve on the little bit of Hebrew that we knew.
We also travelled a little, socialised and chilled out on the beaches of Tel Aviv together. We even surfed from time to time until one day a wave crashed my surf board into a small cluster of rocks, breaking the surfboard in half.
Unknown to both of us at that time however, all these activities were the beginning of a process that would eventually bring the two halfs (Ursula and myself) together.
One afternoon in December 2007, after finishing another days work in Tel Aviv, and one week after both Ursula and I had acknowledged to one another that we were attracted to each-other, I offered to make her a cup of coffee.
I suggested that we drink it sitting up on one of the branches of the Banyan tree shown below which was conveniently situated just outside the kitchen.
After climbing up, we both enjoyed and laughed at the spontaneous and random setting. After some chat over coffee, I acted on impulse and asked if she would marry me.
Surprised and overwhelmed, she asked if I was serious. I said Yes, she said ‘Yes’ and then we lived happily ever after.
Not really, but that was the intention as well as the beginning. It all happened so…quickly, so quickly in fact that I didn’t have time to…
When we parted, Ursula went back to her room. Her room-mate, who had packed up to go back to Switzerland, had left a book for Ursula on her bed, which she found upon returning to her room.
The title of the book was something along the lines of ‘God is making Marriages’. On the high heels of Love, Ursula understood this to be a sign that it was meant to be, and it was.
I also got a sign later that evening. I had asked Ursula to go out for dinner with me to celebrate our engagement and so we walked to the restaurant where both great food and a great view of the Tel Aviv skyline awaited us.
On the way there, a sign appeared before me. Yes, it was quite literally a very hard and hurtful metal street sign which took me by surprise as I stupidly walked into it, head first.
Apart from my own blood, I don’t know what else was on that street sign or what it said, but I do know that it was the first of many steps that would involve blood, sweat and tears in the years that would follow.
I moved back to Northern Ireland at the end of 2007 with Ursula following three months later in March 2008 where we soon began planning to marry.
Before that though, and not long after our engagement, we both made a point of visiting each-others Parents for a week in both Switzerland and Northern Ireland to introduce ourselves, as well as to gain some brief ‘background knowledge’.
In those six months between when we got engaged, to when we got married in the summer of 2008, we had only really known each-other for about three or four months in total, yet we were very much at peace about getting married to one another.
We remained excited about the fact that we were going to begin a new and unknown phase of Life together as Husband and Wife, and the amazing adventure that we both expected it to be.
Like two dreamers in the midst of their own little Love story, we went forwards into making not only a commitment to one another, but so to making a Covenant with one another. It was a covenant that was bigger than us, and much bigger than we even realised.
Our special day twelve years ago was a day that had come together after only two months of on/off planning. As you can see by the look on our faces when we cut the cake, we were delighted. It had finally happened. We had finally ticked the ‘Marriage Box’ on Life’s ‘things to do’ list. Mission complete.
The greater mission of Marriage itself though, was waiting round the corner to introduce itself to us and we soon realised that it wasn’t as easy to cut as what our wedding cake above had been.
In fact it was quite the opposite. It soon began to cut into us, testing out the sweet surface of our new found love, and in the process it revealed what lay deeper.
As we came down from the high of getting married and being married, our focus began to shift onto observing in greater detail the person to whom each of us was married.
It was only really then that we both started to get know eachother properly. More than that, it was only then that I began to get to know myself.
As the years passed and the Marriage progressed, I became more and more confronted by myself to such an extent that I ended up having a full blown identity crisis. To find out why, click on the following link to get back to Nobody’s Victory and continue reading at Part 1. https://nobodynobox.com/nobodys-victory-3/
In the meantime however, we recently celebrated 12 years of marriage and just prior to that, for the first time in about 6 or 7 years, we took a little 2 day break away together in Montreux, Switzerland.
Greetings to all of you.