I loved the candor of Okeoghene's answers and that God plays an important role in her marriage. I found it cute that her hubby chipped in on one of the answers :).
I am particularly grateful that despite being ill, Okeoghene fulfilled her promise to be a part of the series (Get well soon dear!!!). I hope y'all enjoy this interview as much as I did.
- Please tell us about yourself?
My name is Okeoghene. I am a Nigerian, Catholic-Christian, sit-at-home mom /student. Onos' wife and Oke & Brume's mummy. I am an easy going lady who is trying to live my ordinary life extraordinarily well, fit of the daughter of the King.
- How did you meet your spouse and how long were you together before you got married?
My husband and I worked with the same bank. I first met my husband when he was sent to my branch from the headoffice on a special assignment. He was with us for a couple of days but I didn't really talk to him then. You know the beef between headoffice staff and branch staff- with branch staff thinking they work more while headoffice peeps get to play the big boys and girls. Though I acknowledged he was cute, we had little or no contact. I was a fast track cashier at the counter then and was seriously looking for a move to a different unit. When a position opened on the Customer Service desk, I was more than happy to be moved there. In preparation, I was going to understudy the head of unit *no one sent me o and I told her I was just helping since she had so much work to do and she was the only one there*. Next, I talked the Head of Operations at the branch that I would like to move. She was reluctant to move me and was trying to buy me over with flattery that I was her best hand in my unit. I hinted to the branch manager that I would like to change my unit. He said he would think about it. I thought that meant it was a done deal. Only for me to hear that the head of Customer Service said she would prefer to work with a guy than a lady. I prayed about it that God should change her mind but most importantly that His will be done.Then a few days later, they sent a guy from headoffice and it was "him". I was sad that I didn't get to move. I didn't even see God's own big picture, my human eye was just seeing the eye candy we got in the branch. We became friends. I never thought I could date him though, cos we worked in the place. We courted for 3 years before we finally got married.
- How did your hubby propose?
The bank we worked with acquired another bank and he was sent out of town to go manage a branch. The night he was supposed to leave, he came over to my house and after talking for a while, he said he was going away and he would like me to know that he would want us to take a life journey together. He found a good thing and wants to be a part of my life and would like me to a part of his life. He asked me to marry him but said it didn't matter if I had to think about it. He just wanted me to know how he felt and how far he was ready to go.
- You mentioned on your blog that you eloped to do a quiet wedding before doing the "big" white wedding? Did your parents/family ever find out, how did they feel about that?
Eventually our families found out before the 'big' wedding and my mom wasn't happy. She felt betrayed that I didn't tell her and I came back to her house like nothing happened. I apologised.She got over it after a while. She later enthused that it was the reason why I wasn't as excited with the wedding plans cos in my mind I was already married.
Big adjustments? Hmmm. At the beginning, it was difficult for me to be accountable to another person. Then coming back from work to cook required some getting used to. As our family grew definitely juggling life as a wife and mom took some work.
- How has your marriage changed over the years?
I think we have both grown over the years. When we just got married, we were this carefree couple. We had night-outs and if we had a terrible week at work, we just upped into the car and checked into a hotel till Sunday. As our family grew, our priorities also changed. We had little people who were dependent on us, so we needed to be stable. I needed a husband who was supportive, caring, who put his family first and also interested in changing a diaper or 2. He also needed a supportive wife. We were able to get to that point where we can say we clicked together as a team.
- What does "submission" mean to you?
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Submission to me is loving and respecting my husband despite his faults. Believing he can lead our team right and allowing him play his role as a leader with God leading us and being our beacon. Submission is also knowing what I want but making sure my husband agrees before I do it. Submission is knowing the battles to pick and going to God in prayer as always to soften hearts and situations. The bible says wives submit to your husbands as unto God. Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her. Submission and love go hand in hand in my mind. When a couple proclaim love to one another, they are proclaiming putting the partner first.
- What is the best part about being a wife?
The best part about being a wife is knowing you have a man in your corner who loves and cares about you. It is the companionship, having someone who wants and prays for your good and who you can also help to achieve his purpose. On a very light note, when I am out with friends there is no pressure to impress anyone. I can just go out and have fun.
- What is the hardest part?
The hardest part of being married is finding a middle ground; Finding a balance; juggling life as a wife, mom, working, taking care of the home. All these can be overwhelming. You don't want to neglect your husband because of the kids and vice versa.
- Which one do you find harder- Marriage or Parenting?
I think they both have their highs and lows but personally, parenting takes the cake for me. With marriage, you know you are dealing with an adult. You can establish how you communicate when you have disagreements or differing opinions. And if you've been with someone for a while, you know them. The skills required are ones that I learned growing up. Now parenting, is different. It is a huge responsibility. You have the fresh page on another person's life to write on. You are the potter's assistant and you have been given the opportunity to mold. You must try to do a good job. The skills required are ones that I don't even know if I have. Everyday you are learning something new and you are re-learning things you thought you knew. It is an awesome responsibility.
- Is love enough for a marriage to survive? What other qualities does a marriage need to last?
Love is important in marriage but it is not the only ingredient required to make marriage last..Good communications lines, compatibility, trust, respect, friendship, sharing the same values are all required to cook the marriage soup.
PS: If we are talking about unconditional love,the kind of love proclaimed in 1Corinth 13, the kind of love that is patient, kind, not boastful, arrogant or rude. That kind of love never fails and that kind of love is enough for marriage. The only way to achieve this kind of love is to operate on God's wavelength.-----response by Mr. O
- What are your thoughts on premarital sex and what effect do you think it has on a marriage?
When God creates something, it is to serve a purpose and for a reason. Sex is His idea, designed for a couple committed in marriage. My thoughts on premarital sex? Premarital sex is wrong. There is so much pressure on young men and women to have sex all in the name of love, but if you really love someone, you will be patient, put a ring on it and then enjoy all the sex you want.
13. What advice do you have for singles looking to get married?
Get to know yourself better. Travel. Invest. Be the kind of person you will like to marry