Nataly’s and Nathans love story is just beautiful. I remember her telling me over coffee when we first met and it just melted my heart. Every couple I have the privilege of photographing I am always fascinated to hear their love story. Each and every single one is unique and magical. This one is no exception. Hair and makeup by the amazingly talented Carrie from Toto Caelo.
“I’d grown up with my Mom and Dad, knowing their story and being totally crazy about it. My mom had been living in Belgium when they met, and she was about a week away from heading home. 3 days after they met, they got engaged and she never returned to Belgium. They’ve been happily married for the past 26 years and counting.
I’ve been a hopeless romantic my whole life. Growing up watching rom-coms was (and still is) one of my favourite past times. I love stories, and good stories at that. Romance has a way to sweep you off your feet. I remembered my Mom telling me that she had written down a list of what she wanted in her future husband, and my Dad had done the same. At 18, I thought I’d do the same. The day before my wedding, my cousin’s husband came up to me to tell me he remembered that I said, when I was 16, that I wanted to get married at 21. How crazy is it that I knew I wanted to get married at 21?!?
And so, I kept that list on paper and in my heart throughout the months and the years that passed. There was no one that ticked everything on my list, but it was something I had prayed about and had left in God’s hands. If God could do that for my parents, He could certainly do it for me.
Bearing in mind, on my list weren’t things that were unrealistic. I wanted a guy who paid attention to every word that I said, that was funny, romantic, and liked going to the gym. A guy that was crazy about Jesus. There were several other things, but in this day and age, romance and chivalry sometimes can be lost in the past.
So, fast track to January 2015. I also always dreamed of that rom com romance, where the guy had seen the girl from far away and wondered what it would’ve been like to be with her. I never wanted to see the guy first and think, “oh I hope he thinks I’m cute, I wonder if he’ll like me!”. That was generally what always happened, and I really wanted something special.
Nathan had seen me at Hillsong Church several times. How he remembered me in the crowd of thousands, I don’t know.
But in January 2015, I went to Dublin with my friends for the weekend as I had never been there before. Dublin was also where one of my fave rom coms was filmed – Leap Year. I had to see where the locations were!
Nathan had gone to Belfast with his friends that weekend, and took them down to Dublin for the night.
So, all of a sudden, I’m with my friends and we’re listening to some Irish music, and I come up the stairs, and Nathan taps me on the shoulder:
“Hi…. Are you from London?”
“I’m from Hillsong!”
“Oh my gosh no way!!! What a small world that’s so crazy!!”
I thought it was so crazy that we just had met each other – what a coincidence!
But little did I know that coincidence and I had not collided that day – but that God’s wonderful paintbrush was painting that moment together on His gorgeous canvas.
We didn’t speak to each other for another couple of months, but then we saw each other at an Arcade night and we clicked from there. We began talking, and our feelings for each other just started to grow. He seemed to fit everything on my list!
And as we started dating, I could see that everything that I had desired and penned on my list years before, had finally come to fruition and eventually stood before me on my wedding day. Fun fact: on the day of our wedding, I got his best man to deliver him my physical list. He not only was everything on it, but other things that I had never even thought to put on that list. God was and is so faithful, that He knew my heart and knew exactly who He had designed and would fit me perfectly!”- Nataly