Marriage Savoring Life Travel

Part Four – Istanbul, Fiance Visa, Engagement to Wedding.

So this is the end of the “how we met story. We have spent the weekend with my youngest 8+1 siblings at my parents house while my parents stayed at our house. I’ll try to tell that story a bit more tomorrow. It’s been fun but we will also appreciate our quiet house tonight.

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So the engagement happened around
the first of July and by July 23, 2013, we had mailed all of our documents to the attorney and the visa waiting process began.  I mailed them from my annual work conference on Jekyll Island.  It is hard to believe that in just a few months Shah will be attending that conference with me.  He’s really here. (And he did)

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We had added up the visa steps and were hoping that he would have his visa by the end of May.  If he didn’t get it by May 24, 2014 we were going to have trouble with his passport.  But as I’ve written before, sometimes God’s timing is faster than we even hope.  Every step of the process went faster than expected and on January 6, 2014 he had his interview and on January 8, 2014, I got the best birthday present I’d ever gotten, they issued his visa.

But I’m getting ahead of myself, you see, we were officially and legally engaged, but we were a far cry from being Facebook status engaged.  Things like rings had never been important to me.  My parents didn’t have a diamond engagement ring and I didn’t see the importance of a ring and a proposal.  But because everything else we did was so untraditional, I wanted some tradition in our fairytale story.  And I got it.

I told my sister and then my friends and finally my parents that we were engaged.  I tried to calm them with the notion that it would be a year before we actually tied the knot and that they would have lots of time to see what a wonderful man he was.  People had a variety of reactions, and to some extent it really sucked that all people couldn’t be happy for us.  I’m just thankful that all the joy that others brought to our wedding erased the memories o all the worries and doubts they had initially.

I decided to be an “irresponsible American” and actually take two full weeks off work over the Thanksgiving holiday and go spend some real time with Shah.  I know I’ve written about our time in Turkey.  We got engaged on the 23rd with a full diamond ring proposal at a nice restaurant with the added bonus of him having hid the ring in a kindersurprise egg. He and a friend actually bought six eggs and practiced taking them apart and putting them back together.  They did it so perfectly that when I unwrapped it to have for dessert with tea, I had no idea I’d find a ring where the toy usually is.

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Taking two weeks was one of the wisest decisions I ever made because we were able to get past the pure fun and excitement and move into facing and fixing real issues. 

The most reassuring thing I learned about us on the trip was not that we were always happy with everything, but that we could face issues, solve issues and move past issues.  I realized I was marrying a very wise man with a lot of discernment.  And I continue to realize that more and more each week that we are married.

That pretty much sums up our how we met.  He moved here on January 17th and we had our wedding March 29th.  All of his remaining visa papers have been submitted and we are hoping that in the next few months he will get his conditional permanent resident card. 

Life is good.  Every week we get better at this married thing.  We find more things we enjoy doing together and more ways to make each other happy.  It’s a really good time of life.  We are together and enjoying many good and perfect gifts.

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About Camila

Based in Atlanta, but from the mountains of North Carolina. New widow of a man from Iran. Mother of one precious girl. Anti-human trafficking expert. Sister to 16 siblings (Yes, some of are adopted). Daughter of God.

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