Names: Monique & Quinton
Status: Engaged, (Updated 2015) Married, (updated 2016) Became parents.
Been together since: 2013
About 14 months ago a mutual friend sent me a message saying that one of his good friends, Quinton, was moving to Dubai, where I live. He asked if I could show him around. I said, “Sure!”
He arrived a month before he was to move just to sign his contract. We met the day he landed. I thought he was cute from the get-go but I had also heard that he had just gotten a divorce and thus I had already placed him in the ‘Just divorced / damaged goods / don’t go there’ box. I didn’t know at the time that they had already been separated for 2 years prior to the official divorce proceedings so I didn’t want to think too much about it.
It was funny to discover how interlinked we had been without knowing it: we were both from the same little town that nobody has ever heard the name of just outside Johannesburg and he had been to the same school that my brothers and cousins had attended. This is a very small town and we must have crossed paths at some point but it was only now that we sat facing each other thousands of miles away in this beautiful city built on the Arabian desert sharing all that we had in common. How cool!
He went back to Johannesburg and I followed 2 weeks later for my summer holidays. We lived quite close together and continued seeing each other as friends. Those were challenging days for me: my father had just gotten into an accident and I was also just completing my MBA and a relationship was the last thing on my mind. This clearly wasn’t the case on his side as he kept inviting me for lunches and dinners.
I kept telling him that I had to study or go to the hospital but he would always offer to give me a ride and just wait outside until I was finished and drop me back home again. I was wondering why he was so sweet… he was always around and was never pushy, always a perfect gentleman. There was something so very different about him. He wasn’t a player. Players don’t go out of their way to spend time with you and take care of you like this.
He had a 4 year old son from his marriage. I hadn’t met him yet. He was just getting ready to move to Dubai. I was going to stay longer in Johannesburg to look after my father. He asked me for lunch just before he left. When he picked me up, he had his son with him. This caught me by surprise. When we went for lunch we bumped into my mother and brother. This was all totally unplanned. All of a sudden we were all having a big ‘family’ lunch and we still weren’t anything more than just friends at this point.
By the time my mother and brother left I had already felt a special bond with his son. The feeling seemed to be mutual. I remember this well: it was just at that special moment that I looked at them and understood everything very clearly. It was like a switch went off in my head and illuminated everything giving me perfect clarity: this was really going to go somewhere. I saw him from a very different light that moment onwards.
He dropped me home after lunch and we kissed for the first time. He said, “See you back in Dubai”.
I returned to Dubai and we have been inseparable since.
Eight months later we were engaged.
The proposal: It wasn’t the biggest of surprises as we had already discussed getting married. We were back in Johannesburg and he had booked a country house for the night. Off we went, his adorable son and ourselves. He usually is quite sweet and romantic but he was even more so that weekend. He booked spa treatments and arranged a babysitter for our dinner. After dinner we went for a walk under a sky full of stars. As I was looking up, admiring the beauty, he had gotten down on one knee. He was shaking from the thrill of the moment. I said, ‘Yes, yes! Get up!” It really was very special to be there with him and his son the next day.
I am an avid traveler and it is interesting to me that I have lived in Korea, Thailand, the UK, Greece and Japan, not to mention my hometown South Africa, backpacked through South East Asia but my other half happens to be from the same small little town & neighborhood as myself and I met him in Dubai! I feel we are two apples who have fallen from the same tree and have gone through the same experiences and we found each other here in this beautiful city.
What advice do you have for anyone who is looking for love?
If u really want the person that is meant for you, you have to be very happy and complete within yourself. A long time ago someone had told me that people are like two rings, if you are not two complete circles, you cannot be interlinked and bonded properly. You really have to be happy with yourself. You have to know that you do not need to rely on anyone else for your happiness.
What advice do you have for couples going through a hard time?
Communication is key. If one isn’t opening up or putting their cards on the table, you have somehow to get them to open up. With communication you can work through everything.
One thing I have learnt about love is…
You hear a lot of people say when you have met the right one, you just know it. I do believe in love at first sight but I do believe that that special feeling of knowledge sets that special relationship aside from the others. I knew it when I met Quinton – when you know, you know. You have to follow your instincts and intuition.
Monique & Quinton got married on the 28 February 2015.
And here is the video of their beautiful day. Get your tissues out!
No words needed here <3
(Interview & write-up by Bianca)
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