I remember on June 29th 2014, I met Pomeline for the first time. A mutual friend of ours invited her to join a larger group of us for Brunch. Providence would have it that I would sit across from her. I definitely was not super chatty, but I did manage to introduce myself to this beautiful woman whom, also, I discovered was very passionate about her faith. Our first meeting was not very long, and I was definitely a bit bummed out when brunch was over. I walked home with my friend Will Davies, and he can attest to how twitter pated I was.
That summer, there were several group activities (from soccer on the parliamentary front lawn, to large Catholic young adults worship nights) where Pomeline and I ran into each other. In the Fall, we both joined the same book club. Suspiciously, our mutual friend, the organizer, would often show up 30 minutes to an hour late. We quickly discovered a lot of common interests (like arguing about politics). While a friendship was quickly formed, Will pulled me aside and encouraged me to be honest with myself about my intentions with Pomeline. I think it only took a couple of book club meetings to summon the courage to ask her out.
We went to an Oktoberfest Festival for our first date. Despite a lack of planning for the rain, or sense of direction on my part, we had a lot of fun on that fall afternoon. I remember having to catch myself from getting lost in her eyes. Despite it being a rainy afternoon, and the event we went to being outdoors, we spontaneously started playing this game where we would fill in the names and stories of the people around us at the fair.
I also remember how warm and generous Pome was on our first date. When I came home, my roommates can vouch that I was really giddy and happy.
One of the things I love most about Josiah is his sense of adventure. I quickly realized he was up for spontaneous fun on our first date. We were riding the bus back from the festival, when I spotted a cute year round Christmas Shop. Josiah suggested we jump off the bus and take a look inside the store. He then showed me one of his favourite book stores nearby.
Josiah’s sense of adventure has given me the courage to venture off the beaten path. Josiah left for Vancouver in the Fall of 2015 to work on his boss’s federal election campaign. We had been dating for less than a year, but I quickly found myself buying a plane ticket to come visit him. Those months apart were some of the most difficult in our relationship. Josiah was incredibly busy with work, making our frequent dates in Ottawa a thing of the past. Long distance communication had its hardships. It’s during this visit in Vancouver that I became convinced that I could spend the rest of my life with Josiah as his wife. No matter how impatient or tired I grew, Josiah was a wellspring of patience and love. He makes me grow where I am weak, and persevere in the fight to be the best version of myself.
Josiah eventually returned from Vancouver. It was a difficult season for both of us after the federal elections. Josiah’s boss had not been reelected, and he was on the hunt for a job. We openly talked about building a future together, and how we both felt called to marriage, but I assumed it wouldn’t be happening anytime soon, given current circumstances. Thankfully, Josiah has more of a sense of adventure than me. On February 6, 2016, Josiah took me to St Raphael’s Ruins and asked me to be his wife. These ruins are meaningful to both of us. If you are familiar with the story of Tobias, you would know that it is the angel Raphael who led him to his wife Sarah. I had often prayed to St Raphael to intercede with God to send me a spouse who would be a strong and faithful man. My prayers were answered a thousand fold.
Josiah felt the ruins were significant given our personal faith lives, which have both been built back up by God’s grace. After saying yes to him, Josiah shared these verses with me:
11 The LORD will always guide you, will satisfy your needs in the scorched land; he will give strength to your bones and you be will be like a watered garden, like a flowing spring whose waters never run dry.
12 Your ancient ruins will be rebuilt; you will build on age – old foundations. You will be called ‘Breach-mender’, ‘Restorer of streets to be lived in’.
Our engagement and time of courtship have served as the foundation of what will be, I am certain, a strong and blessed marriage. I couldn’t be happier to be preparing to become Josiah’s wife, and celebrate with all of you as we will be entering the holy sacrament of marriage together.