Amanda and Kevin
Okay I know, but I love alliterations almost as much as love stories. Amanda sat down at her first class in Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Canada and introduced herself to the three people sitting beside her, whose names surprisingly were Mat, Pat, and Cat. When Kevin walked in, Amanda immediately took notice of him. Kevin walked up and asked if he could have the seat next to Amanda, she replied, “As long as your name doesn’t rhyme with Mat, Pat, and Cat.” Amanda was the first person Kevin met in their Education program. And so it began……
When they met, Kevin was in the mindset that he was going to be single forever. He had planned to finish school and then travel and he didn’t want a relationship getting in the way of that. As often happens, Kevin stated, “It really felt like it wasn’t a choice.” It was their time apart over the Christmas holidays that really made Kevin realize how much he missed Amanda and how important she was to him. Amanda fell hard and fast although it took awhile to decide he was the one. After two years together, Amanda wrote a letter to Kevin expressing her feelings and how she knew he was the one. It would be 7 years later before she gave the letter to Kevin on the eve of their wedding. What a wonderful gift to Kevin who was touched to know that this was how Amanda felt all those years ago.
Their second year together was largely spent apart. Kevin had graduated and spent a year fire fighting in northern Ontario, while Amanda taught music and then travelled to France. When they reunited, they both realized they had to find a way to spend more time together.
Kevin and Amanda had a strong foundation before getting married having been together for ten years. They spent a year in Taiwan where they had to adopt to a new culture and country which brought them closer together.
“Everything we have done has lead up to us committing to spending the rest of our lives together.”
As one of their strengths is being open with one another about how they’re feeling, they had had conversations about when they would get married. Upon their return from Taiwan, they knew where they wanted to live and decided it was time.
Trying to slip a surprise proposal in between busy schedules proved to be a challenge. Kevin didn’t want his proposal to be planned down to the minute but Amanda had a tight schedule and every time Kevin wanted to propose it felt rushed. Then they went on vacation to Honolulu and their calendars were wiped clean. On the night before they flew home, they had a lovely dinner together, followed by a romantic walk on a secluded beach guided by a full moon. She turned around and he was down on one knee. They both agreed it was the perfect moment. Originally he had planned to do it a couple of days earlier at the top of a mountain after a highly intense hike together. He had the ring in his pocket as they swung from ropes and clinged to the mountain. By the time they got to the top, he realized it wouldn’t be safe to ask her there because there was hardly even room for both of them.
We got engaged March 2019 and wanted a summer wedding so planned for July 2020. We had a guest list of about 100 and then covid hit. They decided to go ahead with the wedding. Some of their friends had postponed their wedding but Kevin and Amanda chose to go ahead and just modify their plans. They rebooked a number of venues for the ceremony and as covid continued, those venues shut down. In the end they were able to have the ceremony at the same location as the reception on the beach in front of the restaurant. The guest list was reduced to 40 people which allowed them to have an intimate, personal wedding. With the exception of one immediate family member who was unable to come, the wedding was a dream–a personal, intimate occasion shared with their family and closest of friends.
For Amanda there are a lot of things that make them work–we are similar in a lot of ways but in other ways we are completely different–her weaknesses are Kevin’s strengths and vice versa so they balance each other out. In Kevin’s words, they have pillars of common interest that bring them together–music, outdoor activities, language, and travel. They respect each other’s independence while at the same time they love spending time with one another. When they are together they are fully present. Both feel completely at ease to be silly, goofy and fun when they’re together. “Amanda has such an incredible energy and presence about her and I appreciate that,” raves Kevin.
Open communication is really important for them. “We talk about things before they get a chance to become big issues,” says Amanda. They have date nights at least once a week–often they include twenty minute to three hour walks.