Dayo & Odun Aluko's Story
How we met:
On Wednesday the 14th of Nov 2007 at a departmental symposium in Obafemi Awolowo University Ile Ife, the paths of two people crossed; apart from being in the same departments, they were also both class governors. Dayo who was in his final year had seen Odun a couple of times, but they had never spoken to each other. After the programme, they bumped into each other on the way out and happened to be going in the same direction. That evening they talked from 5pm and didn’t realise when the clock struck 11pm. Dayo had to spend the night at a friend's house nearby.
From the get go they shared what Dayo describes as "mental attraction". They had a lot of common interests. Their friendship started with the big brother- little sister relationship, to the school father- school daughter twist. He constantly gave her tips on how to survive OAU (of course while keeping his real game plan to himself) eventually, they grew on each other
What was the first impression?
Odun: He was a nice guy. Someone I could confide in and look to for direction. I also saw him as good leader.
Dayo: She struck me as someone with a good heart, well brought up, with a very "teachable" personality. You might ask, love at first sight? Attraction, yes. Love no !
Toasting / Courting:
Dayo: After being friends for a while I felt it was time to take things a notch higher. I was leave school soon, so I asked her if my graduation would be " the end of the book or the end of a chapter"
Odun: I opted to end the chapter. I found the "book/chapter" line witty and very funny. Many chapters after here we are.
We had our first date was at Spices in New Buka, OAU.It went really well. We courted for about 5 years and eventually got married exactly 5years and 3days after first speaking to each other. While we were courting, when we have issues, we mostly settled through no holds barred face to face discussions. We do not involve 3rd parties no matter what.
Siblings don't kiss lol. That's 21/11/2007 in room 306 Awo annex *covering faces*
Dayo: I never had any doubts about her all through while we were courting. There was a day she said to me “Dayo we are in this together we would succeed together” At that point i knew she was my wife.
Odun: He had always been my guide and always pushed me to succeed. He has always been heaven made for me and I trust him.
I proposed to her on my birthday; 12th June 2011.I was hanging out with my brothers at their house and Odun was around. She was oblivious of what I was up to. In the midst of all the merriment, I played our song (Julio Iglesias’s version of “ I can’t help falling in love with you”), I held her close as we slow danced to the song. Naturally we shared a kiss. I had the engagement ring in my mouth all the while and I passed it to her. Thank God she didn’t swallow it!
Then I asked her to marry me and in the midst of the shock she said yes. I couldn’t go down on my knees because her legs trembled in shock and I had to support her lol .
Odun: If he had proposed on the anniversary of our first meeting, I would have suspected because I felt it was about the time he popped the question. Proposing on his birthday took me totally off guard. I love the method he came up with. It was very intimate, private and different. I was in total shock and I could barely stand. He had to support me though I didn’t get to see him go down one knee.
How did you feel about giving up the perks/independence that comes with being a bachelor/spinster?
Odun: I gave up being all about myself and became more selfless .I told myself that marriage is not a prison or bondage and that with understanding and love everything would be fine.
Dayo:I had tuned my mind to the fact that I can’t hang out with the boys as often, and also that my wife and future kids would come first. This made the transition from bachelorhood to marriage easy for me. I gave up night crawling and I have become more analytical reacting to some and not everything.
The wedding preparations started about six months after we got engaged. Our parents accepted and respected our choices without any hassles .The planning period was one of self discovery and sacrifice. It was hectic but we had a fair idea of what we wanted our wedding to look like so that was a guide. In all the planning phase got us closer in a different way. Making decisions, meetings with vendors etc. It was a real a display of team work and it really put paid to any doubts we nursed. For the couple, the major concern was how the wedding would go. I never doubted or had jitters before the marriage. They had about 700 guests at the wedding. Guess it's up to you to be the judge whether it was a big or small wedding.
How did you feel when you said the words I do?
Odun: I felt fulfilled.
Dayo: I felt reborn and really good.
We spent our honeymoon in Ghana. It was for one week. Some of the sights and places we visited were.Elmina castle, Aburi botanical garden,The suspended bridge, Akosombo lake, Labadi beach, Mokola market, Kwame Nkruma Memorial park. Life after the honeymoon so far has been good and we try to take it all in as reminders in future to always help refresh the marriage. We joke about telling ourselves in 10 years time “do you remember when.....”
Odun: Marriage is a beautiful thing. A lot of people run away from it because of the fear of giving up their freedom and independence, but a little sacrifice here and compromise there, the sky is the limit.
Dayo: marry your friend, someone you feel very very comfortable with. Nollywood and novels are premeditated never use them as yardsticks for what a marriage or partner should be. Be mindful of what you expect from marriage. Getting married does not solve your problems however marriage provides a platform to share your life and all it entails with someone who means the world to you.
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