My first memory of Gabriel goes all the way back to 2003/04 I think – those were the days when I used to visit my Grandma Ruth’s church (which is the church I attend now). I must have been around 12 or 13 and whenever I spent the weekend at my Nan’s house I would go to church with her and see my cousin’s Sharon, Eugene and JK. Gabriel was one of Eugene’s best friends and I vaguely remember him being really skinny with a big head but a really cute face. I never really spoke to him those days – just the usual ‘hi’ and ‘bye’…nothing significant at the time.
Fast forward to early 2010 during my first year at university I bumped into him at a family event. He was outside when I arrived with my parents and I remember thinking to myself “Wow, Gabriel looks really good…like really really good”. During that night we spoke a couple of times, I couldn’t tell you what was said because I genuinely can’t remember. I guess it was just a generic conversation. Though I found him attractive I didn’t really think anything else of it. I wasn’t interested in a relationship at the time due to various factors. It was only later that I began to see Gabriel as more than just ‘my cousin’s friend’.
A month or two after, I had started regularly attending my Nan’s church as I had left the church I had been attending as a child. By this point Gabriel no longer attended that church as he and his family had moved to Reading some years before and had been attending another branch there. One evening Gabriel added me on Facebook. I didn’t think anything of it to be honest. Another month went by and then one evening he left a comment on my Facebook wall saying “Hey, how you doing? Just thought I’d say hi” LOL and basically asked for my BBM pin (anyone that was on the “Blackberry Hype” knows the deal lol; BBM – a way for guys to move to girls, and a way for girls to avoid giving out their numbers lol.). That was the first time I had a feeling he was interested in me but I shrugged it off and told myself Gabriel was just being friendly.
From that evening we messaged each other on BBM every single day. We would normally talk about the day we had, God, our aspirations, family etc. and have a little flirt here and there. The one thing I’ll always remember is how much he made me laugh and smile and furthermore how driven and God fearing he was. I found myself excited whenever I’d get a message from him.
There was a beach trip in Brighton arranged for our churches in May 2010 which Gabriel had mentioned he would be attending. I recall feeling quite excited to see him and nervous at the same time. However, when the day finally came I literally bumped into him only once. He said he was going to watch some people play football and then he would come to where my cousins and I were. Sadly, I never saw him again that day. When it was time for me to go, Eugene had asked me to call Gabriel for him as his phone had died and he needed Gabriel to pick him up. Prior to that day, Gabriel and I had never spoken on the phone as we didn’t have each other’s phone numbers. On my way home I remember thinking to myself that I had got it all wrong and that Gabriel probably wasn’t interested in me after all. Nevertheless, we still continued to speak on BBM every day.
One evening Gabriel randomly called me – he later told me that he had saved my number that day at the beach and had been wanting to call me ever since but had been nervous. I remember feeling nervous when I first picked up the phone but once we began talking it was like we had known each other for years. I felt so comfortable talking to him and could talk to him about anything and everything. As time went by we quickly grew closer and closer. We began to study the Word together and pray together as well as have deep conversations and furthermore laugh together. At the time, there were other guys pursuing me, yet Gabriel was the only one that caught my attention…and eventually captured my heart.
As time went by we spent more and more time together and as the attraction grew, so did a beautiful friendship and trust. I will never forget the day Gabriel asked me to be his woman. I felt so blessed to have finally met someone that I could genuinely see myself spending the rest of my life with. I remember questioning whether it was too soon as I had been afraid of relationships and prior to speaking to Gabriel, I had asked God to bring the “right” man into my life after I had finished university. Lol…I guess God showed me that it didn’t quite work that way. God brought him into my life when I least expected it and in Gabriel, I have found a companion and the love of my life – a man who truly loves me and accepts me for me, despite all my flaws and helps me to see my worth as a woman. A man that draws me closer to God and constantly encourages me to be the best I can be. Five and a half years down the line, here we are. I honestly wouldn’t trade Gabriel for the world and I thank God for giving me the faith to take that step forward with Gabriel.
I love you with all my heart Gabriel and can’t wait to start this new chapter in our lives as husband and wife. Xoxoxo
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