Today, we have Jelena chatting to us about how she met her partner and reveals her stunning engagement in the City of Love, on New Years.
1. Where did you meet your partner?
The very first time I met my fiancee was 7 years ago at our friends’ wedding Tallinn, Estonia, that is also where I am from originally. Neither of us were single at the time, and therefore couldn’t have imagined we would end up together one day!
2. How long had you been together before you became engaged?
Although we became Facebook friends after we met in 2013 we haven’t stayed in touch and weren’t in each other’s lives until March 2019. Our mutual friend’s birthday reconnected us and a few months later Melvyn asked me out on a date. We haven’t been apart since! It’s crazy to think he proposed to me only 8 months into our relationship because it feels like I’ve known him all my life!
3. Can you remember an exact point when you looked at your partner and thought “he’s the one!
Yes, I can, actually! I remember a relaxing evening at home, lying in his arms on the sofa of our living room, feeling very warm, cosy and safe. I was trying to express my feelings to him without giving away too much as i was worried it would scare him off or push him away. But i was failing miserably. So we both went silent, looked into each others eyes, and I knew I was in love, the genuine, deep, crazy kind of love that couldn’t ever keep me away from him! So I told him I loved him and to my surprise he said it back without any hesitation, almost with a sign of relief, as though a heavy weight got lifted off his shoulders!
4. Where and how did the proposal take place? Was it expected or a complete shock?
Melvyn proposed to me on the most beautiful bridge in Paris during a surprise getaway he gifted to me for New Years! We stopped to take a picture together that would capture our arrival to the city of love and instead of taking a phone out of his pocket, he took out a box and kneeled in front of me and all the other people passing by. It is all a bit of a blur, to be honest, but definitely a very happy moment, and of course I said yes! I didn’t expect it until the day before we took the trip. It was a complete surprise that he planned from start to finish, I was told to pack 2 outfits and not given any further instructions. Once he revealed where we were going and what we were doing throughout our stay, I felt like he might propose at some point during the trip as it was just too good to be true! I thought maybe it would happen as the bells ring midnight, or as we head to the Eiffel Tower but definitely didn’t expect it to happen pretty much straight after our arrival. He definitely got me by surprise there, and with no make up or glamorous outfit too! The entire proposal was captured by a photographer, which is so lovely because now we have some amazing pictures to look back onto.
5. What does marriage mean to you?
Marriage isn’t a start. It’s not the next step or a new chapter or a beginning to something different. It doesn’t change you or at least it shouldn’t, in my opinion. To me, marriage is a token of appreciation, a sign of true acceptance of who we really are, with all our faults and imperfections. A marriage is an everyday compromise, it’s a commitment, to our values, to each other, to the relationship. It’s a promise to work your hardest to achieve happiness, together and apart. Marriage is love – unconditional, eternal. It’s a vow that should never be broken, a seal that should never come undone. It’s a devotion to one another and to what you represent as a couple. Marriage is sacrifice. Marriage is pain. Marriage is complex. But also simple! And it’s full of laughter, and hugs, and smiles. It’s a million memories you’d rather forget but even more to remember and cherish. Marriage nothing and it’s everything, anything you want it to be. Anything but the end.
6. Did you both have the opportunity to meet each other’s families before the engagement?
We did indeed! In fact, Melvyn happened to meet my mum only 6 weeks into our relationship! He passed the test with flying colours after which we carried on getting to know each other’s families. He introduced me to his sister Laura and her family. We travelled to France to spend a weekend with Melvyn’s parents who live in Limousin. My brother visited us in London with his family in October 2019. And we celebrated our first Christmas together with my sister’s family in Newcastle. A week after that we got engaged! All within 6 months!
7. Have you always had a set idea of how you’d like your wedding day or are you open to ideas?
I think Melvyn has always wanted a countryside wedding, and I honestly didn’t mind. I’ve dreamt of an outdoor ceremony, but somehow we ended up picking a venue with a beautiful barn instead! I think we were both open to options as long as they were in a certain style, we call it rustic chic!
8. Are you planning a small intimate ceremony or a large wedding?
Both of us have always envisioned a small, intimate wedding with our families and close friends. That is exactly what we are doing! Only 50 guests are going to come together in a beautiful countryside barn venue to celebrate us getting married.
9. Have you enjoyed wedding planning so far? What’s been the most enjoyable part? What’s been the most stressful part?
We have and we haven’t. We booked the venue at the end of January this year, only 9 months ahead of the selected wedding date. We made a good start and it all would have been fine if not for a current pandemic. Although we understand everyone’s wellbeing and health comes first, it’s been absolutely impossible to secure or organise anything ever since the lock down. We can’t taste a cake, or pick the flowers, or listen to a band perform live! I can’t even try dresses on to find the one! Nevertheless, we remain hopeful that the world is going to be a safer place very soon so that we can return to our wedmin duties and enjoy the process again!
10. What are your future plans together?
3 things come to mind, all of which we simply cannot stop thinking or talking about – a house with a garden, a sausage dog named Bentley and, of course, kids (one day, after that well deserved honeymoon in Maldives, which neither one of us can afford right now)!
Oh wow, what a beautiful love story! We look forward to seeing and hearing all about your wedding day and wish you all the happiness in the world.