Sandy and Will
How We Met
Our love story started over four years ago, and it happened so quickly. Before I knew it he’d swept me off my feet, spent Christmas with my family, we’d travelled along the coast of Australia in a van and were already living together. All in the space of 2 months.
I don’t think I’ll ever forget the day we met, outside the office. It felt like we had known each other lifetimes ago and were finally reunited. Without even thinking I gave him a big hug, then a voice in my head said ‘what are you doing, you haven’t even introduced yourself..’
I’d check Will out at work meetings each morning and found him really attractive. The first time we worked a whole day alone together was when I really got to know him, we had so much in common, the same goals and interests. We had a really good connection. Over the next few weeks we became really great friends and I started to enjoy his company (a lot!).
Then a group of us were sent on a road-trip to Gladstone for work. I was going to be living with Will 24/7, sharing meals, working, commuting and sleeping in the same apartment, for a whole week. A couple of days into the road trip my feelings for Will grew deeper, and by the end of it, the chemistry between us was something I had never experienced before. I knew he could feel it too.
On the inside I couldn’t control my feelings, yet on the outside I did a good job of covering it up. I didn’t expect anything to happen between Will and I, I loved being around him so much that I was terrified of ruining our friendship. After the road trip, I was ‘convinced’ by a friend to come out for drinks at Will’s place. We were getting tipsy, then unexpectedly, Will asked me to come out for a drink at a bar down stairs where he openly told me how he’d been feeling all along. I could not help but to express that I felt exactly the same.
I didn’t want to rush into things and end up heartbroken in front of everyone at work, or lose my job, so we kept our relationship a secret at first. It was risky having to come to work 5 minutes apart so that it wouldn’t look suss but it was so much fun. It literally felt like my life was a rom com. Eventually we came clean and fortunately didn’t lose our jobs, but after a couple of months we quit anyway to pursue our dreams of travelling the world, which we did over the next few years.
When I first arrived in Australia in August 2013, as you can imagine I had no intentions of getting into a relationship. Arriving on the Gold Coast with my mate, fresh from our small town in England..we were ready to party! But that didn’t go to plan. What does?
We landed ourselves a sales job based in Surfers Paradise at a marketing company. So much confidence, energy, positivity buzzing around…we were a little outside our comfort zones…but we loved this environment.
I couldn’t help but notice this bloody gorgeous Aussie chick. You know what I’m saying? But it was different..her and her team were smoking it in sales, she was confident yet humble, always smiling…I just wanted to be around her. The next few weeks I kept subtly mentioning to my boss that “I work well with Sandy” which was a lie because I was always so distracted!
The annoying thing was that dating someone else in the office was out of bounds. That’s fine, nothing will happen anyway, all good, no worries. But I couldn’t hide my feelings. After a couple more weeks of working together, and a work based road-trip, it was crazy how much I knew about Sandy and how connected we were in so many ways. Our travel ambitions, life experiences, our outlook on life, our problems. I had to let her know how I was feeling about her because I’d either go insane or Woodsy (my mate) would choke me for constantly telling him every conversation we were having.
So as you do, I took a deep breath and gained the courage to ask Sandy to come out for a harmless “drink.” We talked, laughed, started getting drunk, talked a bit more. Then I unleashed my feelings, openly and confidently. Laid everything out on the table. What a relief that was! She went on to express the exact same feelings she had for me. It was an amazing moment and one I will never forget. I had a feeling of certainty, love, happiness and so much more. She was (and will always be) the gal for me. We agreed to take it slow and not tell anyone because of the risk of losing our jobs…I know right, who cares…we told the world and life was sweet!
Fast forward to four years later, we have grown to be best friends, lovers, travel buddies and now we’re engaged. The journey we’ve had together has been incredible, pushing each other, supporting each other, loving each other. She has absolutely changed my life and I am so grateful that I get to marry her!
How He Asked
Right from the beginning Will told me he could see us being together for a lifetime. There was absolutely no doubt in his mind about it. And he always hinted a proposal ‘when things were in place and the timing was right.’
The past four years have seen us go through a lot to be able to stay together, due to having different nationalities and visa restrictions that come with an international relationship. When Will’s Australian Working Holiday visa came to an end we travelled around Australia together jumping in and out of the country to renew his tourist visa, then when the money ran out we lived and worked over in New Zealand for a while. Being able to return to Australia permanently was always the end goal but getting permanent residency in Australia is much much harder than it sounds, and believe me we did tones of research. We ended up having no other choice but to relocate to Europe where I could luckily go through the long process of maintaining a European Passport with full working rights. This took us all across the continent working in different countries along the way.
But we soon realised that we weren’t just having the time of our lives and living the dream, we were actually running away from the initial problem of how we were going to stay together in the long term. We had always dreamed about returning to Australia to live, and being able to travel abroad with the freedom to come back together whenever we wanted. For our love to last we finally needed to prioritise getting a partner visa to bring Will back to Australia with me permanently. A $10,000 loan later and things not going to plan with the visa we ended up enduring three long months apart on opposite sides of the world. We could not wait any longer than that so we reunited in Bali where we lived for the next few months while waiting for Will’s Australian partner visa to get approved.
Earlier this year we finally got the good news that we had been anticipating for so long, and we could come back to Australia to start a new life together. The first few months had us finding work to slowly get out of debt and living in shared accommodation to keep costs low. Then after some time we’d saved enough to move into our own little apartment on the beachfront where for the first time in four years we truly understood privacy, and it’s been so perfect ever since!
Things were now ‘in place’ and the ‘timing was just right’ so wedding bells were ringing and proposal hints were getting thrown around on the daily, by both of us. We know each other way too well for anything to be kept a surprise, so we talked a lot about it, we went and saw jewellers together and I made him watch every episode of ‘The Bachelor’ to know how to throw a perfect date. ;)
All the effort paid off because he really did do everything right for it to be the most beautiful and perfect proposal.
It was our four year dating anniversary and it was an early one. A 3am start to see the picturesque sunrise views of the Gold Coast hinterland from a hot air balloon. A romantic tour we’d planned together that was followed by a champagne breakfast at a nearby winery. After the tour we’d come home for an afternoon nap and while I was sleeping Will made sure everything was going to go to plan. When I woke up he told me to put on my new dress and get ready because he was taking me out on a special date.
He drove me to a secluded beach not far from our home where he’s set up a picnic for us. There were strawberries, cream, chocolates and all. Even ‘our song’ playing in the background followed by my favourite Ed Sheehan love songs. He pulled out a beautiful red rose for me, and then I discovered, sticking out of the sand was a message in a bottle. Will asked if I wanted him to read it to me and it turned out to be the most beautiful two page love letter from him. He then got down on one knee and asked me to marry him! And the ring is oh so spectacular!
After that there was another massive surprise. He had hired an exclusive private yacht to celebrate our engagement and it was waiting for us at the nearby marina. I got extremely excited! We walked down the marina where I searched for which ride was ours and then I saw a big sign on a yacht saying “Congratulations on your engagement Will & Sandy” with a cute red love heart that Will had coloured in next to it. We were welcomed onboard with a glass of champagne and made our way up to the front of the yacht as we sailed out into the broad water. Our driver Mike soon brought out a platter with cheese, fruit and prawns for us to enjoy as we watched the gorgeous sun set behind the hinterland. The weather was fantastic and the moon shined brightly that night as we sailed back to the marina. We finished the night off with a drink at the bar where it all began, and the whole night was just oh so magical.
Although I was expecting a proposal, never had I thought I would feel so much love and absolute bliss all at once. And it’s still surreal, we’re both on a natural high. This man is honestly the most incredible guy I’ve ever met, the one person in the world who truly knows me and loves me for who I am. We’ve been through many highs and lows together, and support and accept each other even at our worst. After falling in love with Will four years ago I have watched him grow from being that English backpacker with the sexy accent, into a truly wonderful mature man that I can’t wait to spend the rest of my life with, and so happy to finally get to call him my fiancé.
I am honestly so so lucky, literally every woman’s dream. Don’t settle for anything less ladies!