Pre-Wedding Shoot by Ayodeji Samuel

Ok so I’ve finally found the liver to tell my long-overdue story.  To be honest, I had written it several times in my head but for some reason never posted it.  I guess after receiving more wedding gifts over the weekend from 2a students and the sermon on Sunday, I decided it was finally time… perhaps what worked for me would also work for someone out there.

I actually have no clue how to start so I guess I’ll start from what I think is the beginning… 

Mark: 22 – 24: 

22: “So Jesus answered and said to them, ‘Have faith in God’.
23: For assuredly I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says.
24:  “Therefore I say unto you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.”

Yes!  Pastor Poju pretty much preached this every Sunday.  Every sermon always had spoken words and positive confessions chipped in somehow.  And in November 2011, I decided to practise what he preached and it worked.

No no… practising what he preached was not about finding a man.  I gave up on dating after the last one ended a month before that.  Practising what he preached was more about facing my work and confessing the success of the Training Center I was just about to start.  So I started a routine of fasting, making loud positive confessions (in the privacy of my bedroom of course), focused solely on my work and pretty much let go and let God. 

But sometime in February 2012 I think, I decided to chip in the bit about a man.  It was a request that was made during that same period of fasting and prayer.  I remember saying something like “Lord You know the deep desires of my heart.  You know the kind of man I think is best for me.  Please bring him my way”.  And I prayed… out loud again.  And like the Pastor preached, after I confessed it, I believed it, left God to do the work and literally forgot about it!

Not long after, I got the invitation to speak at Headroom.  I planned to reject the invitation since it clashed with my classes and I did not like flying but Femi (our friend/MC), promised to get another speaker, a certain Jobberfellow, on the same flight so I would not be bored.  Well… the Jobberperson happened to miss his flight and I had to endure the looooong 45-minute flight to Abuja.  

He finally arrives at the end of the event and sits on the stage talking about what, I have absolutely no clue… and neither did the over 200 chics sitting in that hall I’m sure.  Rather than listen to what he had to say, we chose to get carried away by his soft-spoken humble nature… well at least I speak for myself.  I could not believe that someone who seemed to have achieved so much in such a short time could be that humble.  And yes for a split second, I did think it would not be a bad idea to date him.  But I quickly killed that thought.  After that last awful one, I had completely tuned off men.

Well that was until Attraction No 1!  I noticed during dinner that he was left-handed!  Haha… yes!  For some strange reason, I have a thing for “lefties” 😀  Not long after, Attraction No 2 reared its head!  On the way to the airport, he told us he did not have a car!  I knew I had to know more about this guy who clearly could get a car if he wanted to but chose not to.  For someone who always made mouth that she could only date a guy whose car was finer than hers (not that my car is particularly fine), that was pretty strange right?!

Anywayz, we gisted all the way to Lagos.  It seemed we had a lot in common and we were both drawn to the other’s story: he a medical doctor turned internet entrepreneur, I an ex-accountant turned fashion designer.  Of course, seeing I can talk for state and country about my work, he became a potential investor and we booked an appointment to meet the following Wednesday in his office.  Work-related thank you!

Back in Lagos, he offers me a ride halfway to my end and imagine, his friend drops me off at a bus-stop close to my home.  A whole me!  In fact, I have to get an apology from Lekan for that!  But rather than get pissed, that was Attraction No 3! 😀  I was used to being doted on by guys, so this was somewhat a first.  The guy did not “send” me as they say and I was not used to that!

I got home, sent an epistle of an sms thanking him and he responds with a three-word one-liner!  Attraction no 4!  No abbreviations or any of these annoying chatroom acronyms.  All words were spelt out in full!  Great!  The guy can read and write!  But a one-liner?  After all that gisting on the plane?!  He can’t be serious!  

Day 2, I remind him of our appointment, I get another one-liner response.  Day 2 in the pm, another one-liner.  At this point, I was thinking more of the investment opportunity so I wasn’t going to let him off that easy.  

Day 3 (Monday)… another epistle from me and a 2-liner from him!  I’m like HA!  Gotcha!  And there you were giving me one-liners!  I knew I’d break you!  Day 4 perhaps 3 lines and I’m smiling to myself.  Day 5 (Wednesday) I’m asking him for directions and he gives me an address which to me was in Lekki Phase 3 whilst he is claiming they are in Phase 1.  I challenge me and he retorts with “please o we know our address and our address knows us”.  I burst out laughing!  Attraction No 5 – he has a sense of humor!

Anywayz to cut the long story short, meeting went very well, we continue our chat via sms.  Why?  He doesn’t use a Blackberry but some “toy phone” as I call it.  Attraction No 6.  He has a mind of his own and does not follow the crowd.

Then the smses start getting longer.  Like 5 / 6 pages… well into the night.  Attraction No 7, he shares my love for chatting and gifting all night!  Those who know me will tell you I used to be a chat-room junkie!  Before I knew it, I always had my phone beside me, waiting for an sms.  This is Day 6 only.  

Day 7, we planned to meet at my office but I didn’t give an address so he got to Surulere, spent half an hour waiting for an address and descriptions but he gets zilch!  But did he get angry?  Nope!  In fact, we made another date for the very next day!  Attraction No 8.  No overblown ego! 

Sunday, our meet-day and I am having a rough day and a tight deadline!  No wayz I was going anywhere till I was done with my work.  And my faded t-shirt, jeans and oily face fit right in with his faded t-shirt, cargo shorts and Nike flops.  Attraction no 9!  I love a guy in shorts and flops!  

BUT could I go out?!  Nope!  No wayz I was going to leave my work so we ended up buying TFC chicken and soaking garri (something I had not done in years) while he watches me work.  Attraction No 10.  He is down to earth and I felt completely comfortable around him soaking garri!  Best date for as far back as I can remember.  No pretences or keeping up appearances.

Gosh!  The list continued and the rest they say is history!  😀

Within a month, he proposed.  Yup!  Literally within a month or even less.  Not on bended knee; not with a ring.  More like a joke, he says it to me and I pretend not to hear him.  He says it again and I laugh it off.  Then a few days later, he says it again and I still did not take him seriously.  He probably said it like 10 times before I finally believed him.  I couldn’t believe it would be that easy.  So I said a tentative yes but none of us said a word till we were both certain.  We needed to give room for either of us to walk away from it without friends and family being involved.  When I finally told my people, they only knew him as AA… again just in case we broke up, there would be no sentiments.  Noone knew him so it would been easier.  I think we told people like 2 or 3 months later and only after the ring came.  I needed evidence not verbal promises.

But then, even when the sign came, I didn’t wear it for ages…. did not need the attention.  I was still too focused on work and did not need any distractions.  It took ages before it dawned on me… even after I had developed my wedding concept book and started the full-blown planning of the wedding.

Looking back, I know deep down that confession I made in the privacy of my bedroom at that early hour had everything to do with it.  I know many of us pray but some never say them out loud.  I never used to until I started listening to the sermons and reading the Bible.  Remember Proverbs 18:21a “Death and life are in the power of the tongue”.

What amazes me is how many believe in meditation but not in speaking out confessions.  Besides, ever noticed in Yoruba movies (for those whose parents watch them all the time) that for any of their potions to work, they have to chant certain incantations out loud and believe it works.  So if they believe in it and it seems to work for them, then much less we who believe in God.
Since I have had first hand experience on the benefits of making positive confessions (not just on this but so many other things), I have told everyone who care to listen.  

And I say this to all single ladies out there who are being taunted everyday by those stupid broadcasts and messages on how old and grey they would get if they were too choosy!  That’s bull I tell you!  It has nothing to do with you and don’t let those losers out there make you feel bad.  It is not about your weight, or your height or your looks or even your sexy body.  No one knows what the recipe is… they can only try to come up with all solutions for finding the right man or lady and they may not even work for you.  

One thing that will never fail is your belief, the power of your words backed by prayer and fasting!  

Also, don’t treat every man you come across as a potential.  I know if AA and I hadn’t worked out, we would have been great friends.  I am still friends with all my exes, even the last one who left me bruised.  In fact, I moved on the very next day though it still hurt.  In fact, I so moved on, I even asked him for a loan to run the FECs which he gave me and which I returned to him.  

And that’s another thing, never harbor any bitterness towards anyone who has hurt you.  It is hard… yes I know it is tough.  I would never have moved on that quickly if my mentor hadn’t come over that evening to drag me to church and I remember the song the choir sang that day “God is able to do just what He said He would do”.  And by the time I was out of there, I was fine and threw my all into my work!  And guess what?!  I met AA while working somewhat.  You know what they say… “Ambition is the new sexy!”  Guess that was another attraction for him. 

And please don’t give yourself an ultimatum.  It is never about the wedding, getting married or the event.  It is more about the companionship.  I listen to radio shows all the time about ladies who made getting married their New Year’s resolution.  That is one resolution that is not yours to make as it is outside your control.  Try and focus on something else like your work or your career and it will happen someday.  And please be yourself.  Some ladies would rather deprive themselves just so they do not intimidate guys.  My take on this?!  A guy who is intimidated by your success is worth your time!

Oh… and stop with those ridiculously long lists!  When you find the right guy, those things won’t matter.  I had my long list!  At the end of the day, those things that I thought mattered didn’t matter in the grand scheme of things.  

Perhaps it was not all my confession only though.  I know that so many people also prayed for me too because when I finally broke the news about the engagement to friends and mentors, I kept getting the “Ah!  Finally my prayers have been answered.  I have been praying for you”.  I think many people were concerned that I was only about my work and nothing else… which clearly was a valid concern.

SO for those hoping to write their own stories, I am also praying with you.  Not just for the right companion, but for the right job, the right career, the right… anything you hope for.  Confess it, believe it, trust Him and you will have it!  Just believe He will bring what is right for you in your direction and when He does, grab it with both hands!  

So there you have it!  That’s my story.  Goodness!  It is one long one!  But you have seen the end and now you know how it started.  Time to read how more of my positive confessions materialized during the planning of the wedding.  Hopefully it won’t take too long either.

Have a great week people!

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