By Beatrice Nakibuuka
Anthony Ainobushoborozi, a quantity surveyor first met Joveal Kushemererwa at a Life Changers’ Movement Fellowship, Kyambogo University in Banda. That was in April 2016. He was the fellowship coordinator and she attended as a student. One of the members introduced her to him. Two months later, the fellowship organised a week’s mission outreach to Tororo. The two happened to be seatmates but one of her colleagues sat between them.
“At one of the stopovers when we went to buy snacks, one of the hawkers asked me to tell her that she was beautiful. Joveal shared her snacks with us and I also shared mine. During the outreach, she was social, jolly and liked singing. I liked everything about her but had to watch from a distance because of my position and age. I also did not want her to think that I was taking advantage of her,” Anthony reveals.
On their return, Anthony prayed to sit next to her and coincidentally, she had booked him a place next to her. Along the way, Joveal played games on his phone and when they were parting, they exchanged contacts.
The couple tells the rest of their story
So when did the two of you eventually become close?
Joveal: During the outreach, I had given out my Bible. So, away from the fellowship, he bought me a Bible. I was in my first year and I did not think of either a relationship or marriage.
Anthony: We started communicating often thereafter. She was open to me. Although she seemed talkative, she communicated a lot to me. We liked each other’s lifestyle. In July 2017, I told her casually that I loved her because we were good friends. When she tried to give excuses, I told her I was ready to wait. In the same year, she invited me to attend two of her sisters’ graduation parties. Her mother was welcoming. Joveal praised me and I felt at home.
What qualities attracted you to each other?
Anthony: She is God-fearing, intelligent, social, and talkative to complement me because I am reserved. She is beautiful. We come from the same region and attended neighbouring schools.
Joveal: Anthony is God-fearing, humourous, and loves fun. He is also smart, neat, hardworking and respectful.
How and when did you propose to her?
Anthony: In December 2017, when a few relatives and I visited her home in Ibanda. After the visit, my brothers commended me for making a good choice. At the beginning of the year, I thought of the best time and place to propose. Her friends advised me to propose to her before her final exams. On April 9, we had a surveyors’ annual general meeting. So I invited her to dinner at Olives Restaurant in Naguru. I went with her friend who had the same finger size as Joveal and bought a ring. I asked her friend to take her shopping for a dress and she came into the lovers’ nest where we had planned to have the dinner. With 20 friends holding placards, I had a bouquet and when she turned to see who it was, I was on my knee asking for her hand in marriage. We had our wedding on October 13, 2018.
How did you feel?
Joveal: I cried and there was no way I would turn down his proposal. He is romantic and I felt like the luckiest and most loved woman in the world.
How did you set the wedding date?
Anthony: When she accepted my proposal, I did not want to waste time. I thought it right to formally get engaged to her, so we had our introduction in June. Her parents accepted me and this was a go-ahead. I wanted us to wed her on her birthday, October 10, because she is special. However, the date fell on a weekday yet we wanted all our people to attend. We opted for the first weekend after her birthday.
Did you involve a wedding planner?
Joveal: When you have a dream, you do not have to tell someone to paint it for you. They may not do it the same way you want. We knew what we wanted our wedding to be like. It was not something sophisticated. There was no need for a wedding planner. We only got a few friends to be part of the organising committee to cut costs because we felt planners were unnecessary.
What was your best moment?
Joveal: My mother walking me into church to meet my husband. The day was enjoyable because the weather was perfect.
Anthony: Entering the church was superb. She chose a good wedding march song Heart to Heart by Kenny Loggins and we got a standing ovation. Also, everything had been arranged according to our plan and there were no disappointments at the reception.How did you make it happen without disappointments?
Anthony: We looked for service providers that would give us the best services but at an affordable cost. We paid all our service providers by August because usually October is peak season for so many events. Paying on time probably prompted them to provide the best. We did not have any debts after.
How did you choose your entourage?
Anthony: We chose friends and people we felt comfortable with. It was about having the right people around us to help us make the right choices. The chairperson of the wedding advised me to keep Shs1m with someone I trust. After the honeymoon, this money was used for shopping. I did not get stressed.
Joveal: I chose two of my best friends and my sister. I knew they would be happy for me and we were comfortable with one another.
What does it mean to be married?
Anthony: There are seasons and God plans them. Christianity cherishes marriage and when it happens, it is like building our own empire, being able to accomplish many things with support from our partners. You keep building and strengthening each other where need be.
Joveal: Marriage is about being submissive to your husband, learning more things every day and trying to adjust for the better. It must be about you and your husband. You do not have to work it out the way the other people do it because you are different. Even in challenges, telling other people, especially relatives about it undermines my husband. I would rather speak to a random counsellor who does not know about us.
What advice do you give to those intending to wed?
Anthony: You cannot execute all your responsibilities unless you trust in God. You need to invest in your friends early enough. I had made contributions for several of my friends and when mine was due, it was payback time. Joveal: Seek God first. Also, understand what marriage is before you get into a relationship. I think young people should be getting marital counselling even before they contemplate marriage. If such counselling was available, relationships would not fail. Get to understand what you are getting into so you do not feel burdened in the end and wish you knew.
Did you throw her a surprise for the honeymoon?
Anthony: We talked about it first and I had to make sure she would be happy. I made a special arrangement for her while at a place she loves.
Cake: The couple first searched on the internet for the best wedding cake images. Thereafter, their cousin Farida, who only asked for ingredients worth Shs2m, baked a white 15-tier cake for the couple.
The cheapest item was the reception which cost the couple Shs12m. This was inclusive of the tents, seats and food.
Anthony and Joveal found it convenient to have a pre-wedding shoot. They chose to take pictures to enjoy themselves as opposed to the pressures that come with D-day photo shoots.