How We Met
[Together]. We actually met at a job fair. Jasmin had just moved to Memphis to pursue a career as a special education teacher and Ramone worked in recruitment for the school district. We had some casual conversation (strictly professional!) and then we went our separate ways. After a few (professional!) email exchanges, Ramone invited Jasmin to lunch. And the rest is history.
Our Individual Dating Experiences
[Jasmin]: My dating experiences were mild compared to the horror stories I hear from my single friends. Interestingly, Ramone was the first guy that I dated seriously out of college. We met when I was in my early 20s, so he really helped to shape a lot of my thoughts about dating, engagement, and marriage. I had dated other guys before him, but they were nothing more than "college relationships." I remember being young and carefree in my early 20s and fully enjoyed hanging out with him and exploring Memphis.
[Ramone]: Since I was an active duty service member in the US Navy, the majority of my individual dating experiences were somewhat skewed. Most folks in the military will admit that dating, and even family-life, is just totally different compared to those experiences as a civilian. During that period of my life ( ages 18- 25), I hadn't began to grow into the man I am today, therefore, my needs and wants were totally different. I focused way too much on the superficial and, the "now," as opposed to long-term success, and building a healthy, committed relationship. Unfortunately, those short-sighted views led to a failed relationship and several mistakes along the way. One of the main things I learned while being single was that life, like relationships and connections, will forever evolve and advance. Oftentimes, I found myself getting into my own way, eagerly attempting to align and predict my future. I found out that I was definitely more self-sufficient and emotionally-centered than what I gave my self credit for.
[Together]: Our dating experiences were relaxed and fun. We spent the majority of the time trying new places to eat, taking walks, and having intellectually stimulating conversations. Both of us are introverts so we really enjoyed just being around each other and talking. Our dating lives together also experienced several ups and down. We found, however, that we could talk to each other about anything (and still can), so we were never stumped for conversation. Even as a married couple, one of our favorite things to do is to talk on the phone to each other on the way home about our day.
Decision to Get Married
[Jasmin]: Somewhere in my mid-twenties, I began to feel more serious taking the next step toward marriage (with Ramone). Ramone, however, was not ready and we took a break which ended up lasting a year to sort out our feelings. During this time, I moved back home to Maryland and focused 100 percent on Jasmin. I reconnected with old friends and just really took the time to figure out who I was at that stage in my life and what I wanted for myself going forward. I began really drawing nearer to God and His word. I didn’t pray that God bring Ramone back to me or that God make Ramone into the man I wanted him to be; I prayed for peace. I prayed for Ramone’s peace as well, regardless if that meant we never got back together. After about a year, Ramone and I began talking again. I could see drastic changes in his actions, words, and his overall dealings with me. Most importantly, I could see a change in the way that I dealt with him. We did a lot of talking during this time (I mean a whole lot). We talked about the good, the bad, and the grotesque. The one thing we did a lot of during this time is pray together. Through prayer we grew closer to God and closer to each other. I knew that I wanted to spend the rest of my life with my best friend.
[Ramone]: The decision to get married wasn't a difficult one at all. Due to my indecisiveness, and not fully moving forward to the next step, Jasmin moved away back to her home state. That was a big deal to me. At the time, we were working for the same company, and one of the projects I was tasked with was contacting employees that had not signed their "intent to return" letters for the new school year. Jasmin's name was on that list. On one hand, it gave me an excuse to call her, but on the other, I knew I would have to accept her decision. Again, that key trait of "straightforwardness" came through in the clutch! She gave a poised and classic Jasmin "No". While away, we would communicate every once in a while, but oftentimes those conversations were difficult. After almost a year, I began to realize that I couldn’t live any longer without Jasmin and she was the woman God wanted me to be with. I took the necessary steps to make her my wife!
What We Find Irresistible About Each Other
[Jasmin]: One of the biggest things that drew me closer to Ramone was his ability to think outside of the box. Ramone and I are opposites in a lot of ways, but thinking outside the box is the one area where I believe we strongly connect. Ramone and I can have conversations for hours about all topics. We literally talk about everything! Sometimes this can be difficult because we don’t always agree but every day we work toward continuing to understand each other. Ramone is also a wonderful father (his son from a previous relationship) and has a natural ability to protect. When I am running at 1000 miles per hour, Ramone protects my sanity by allowing me to slow down and enjoy the sweetness of life.
[Ramone]: A few things that I find irresistible about Jasmin is her intelligence and her straightforwardness. Jasmin’s intelligence keeps me on my toes. I love talking to her about social issues because she always gives a practical yet objective opinion. Jasmin's brutal honesty on what she will and will not tolerate definitely captures my attention and keeps me intrigued every day. Jasmin’s loyalty and commitment to our relationship is also a driving factor. She is my biggest supporter and always stands by my side no matter what. Obviously, there aren't enough characteristics to truly capture the up's and down of our courtship. However, Jasmin's brutal honesty on what she will and will not tolerate definitely captures my attention and keeps me intrigued every day.
[Together]: Although we are still considered to be newyweds, we feel strongly that we have a great sense of who we are together and separately. Our biggest challenges will be in continuing to work toward making sure that we listen to each other’s feelings and make adjustments as necessary. We have so much in common but we also have so many differences between us. When we bump heads…we bump heads. So we believe that working toward compromise and understanding daily is key. We believe that if we 1) continue to respect each other's feelings, 2) really explore the idea of ‘compromise’, and 3) pray daily for guidance and support, we will have what we need to have a prosperous marriage.
Love this couple!
Until next time...