The story of Eric and Courtney’s marriage involves a Disneyland proposal, two wedding days, and living in three different countries. And it also involves a whole lot of lessons about learning to trust each other as a married couple, especially when you’re far from family and friends.
The two met once in college, but as Courtney says, it “didn’t take.” They met again later, but it took them a few years to realize they had been introduced before! Once they were together the second time, it did take and the couple quickly became inseparable.
When it came time for Eric to pop the question, he chose a trip the two were taking to Disneyland. “I had to carry the ring in my pocket for the whole day. I was paranoid the whole time while we were walking around and going on the rides. Luckily I did not lose the ring.” Very lucky indeed!
Eric and Courtney got married at the Malibu Courthouse, and then had a reception back home in Georgia, so they actually celebrate two wedding dates. After tying the knot, Eric and Courtney decided to move to Dubai for work, and learned a few lessons about their relationship in the process. Says Courtney, “The choice to become expats was a pretty formative day. I think it was important that we were both in agreement about the decision 100%. I don’t think it would’ve worked as well without both of us committing to the adventure. We’ve lived in 3 countries so far and I’m sure we have a few more to go. Picking up and moving to a new country, you have to really trust the person you’re with.”
With such big decisions and moves, Eric and Courtney have found that trust to be the key to their success. “We trust each other implicitly. I have rented an apartment, made an offer on a townhouse, and bought a car – none of which Eric had ever seen. On the flip side, I moved Dubai having never been there. I trusted his judgement that we could do it.”
Eric explains another key to their relationship is trusting the other’s strengths: “We have learned how to move through obstacles by letting the one who is best suited to deal with things deal with it. Whether its cooking, cleaning, banking, cars, cats, etc – we know where each other’s strengths are. We work quite well together, completing tasks by dividing and conquering. I’m pretty sure we would win the Amazing Race if we were ever cast on the show!”
In their time together, the two have learned to rely on each other for company, as well as the importance of taking time as individuals. “I think through our world travels and moving for work, we have learned how to appreciate each other’s company,” says Eric. “There have been times where we were the only people we hung out with for weeks at a time when we first moved to Dubai. We didn’t kill each other – but there were times where we came close.” And in order to keep sane, the two make sure to spend time apart. Courtney explains, “While we do a lot of things together, we still occasionally travel apart. Both of us have active work lives and spend time with friends separately.”
Photo by Starthrower Photography.
“Snapshot of a Marriage” is a series from contributor Emily Westbrooks, who interviews couples on some of their secrets for a strong and successful marriage. With all of our focus on how to make your wedding special, we thought it was important to highlight some ways to make your marriage awesome, too! Click here to see previous Snapshots.