2012 started off with the biggest tragedy of my life. Losing my dad was the most devastating thing I have ever gone through – he was a typical Turkish man that wanted my happiness above everything. All he would say to me was “Sevim, when are you going to find a nice Turkish man and settle?”.
Just before he passed, we were alone and having a deep and meaningful chat about life. He said to me that when he goes he will have the power to guide me in the right direction and he was going to pick me up and place me on the right path.
And sure enough, when we lost him in June my life seemed to change…
I found a ‘proper’ job which he always nagged me about, I performed in the Olympics which was one of the highest moments of my career, and I started saving money which had never even come into my vocabulary before. But it was an invite to a wedding that November that would really transform my life.
You’ve got mail
Dancing with friends at the reception, I noticed a gorgeous man in a brown suit walk past me – and without a moment’s thought I leaned over and pinched his bum (well, you only live once!). We bumped into each other near the toilets later, exchanged a few words and continued our nights separately.
After completely forgetting about it, the next day I woke up to a ‘You have a new follower’ email on Twitter. It was him. His name was Eran. He asked for my number and we started texting, then met a few days later in a little coffee shop. What was meant to be an hour turned into five, and I know it sounds so cheesy, but I already knew that I was going to marry him.
Fly away with me
Fast-forward to next summer, and he had booked me a birthday surprise to Wales. Although I wasn’t overly excited about it, I was touched that he was trying to show his romantic side. Waking me up at 3am to jump in the car, he confessed that instead of driving to Wales, we would be flying to Cardiff for breakfast! I was so livid, I thought ‘who on earth flies to Cardiff?’. So, moody and unimpressed, I got up and climbed in the car to go to the airport.
However, when I huffed ‘what’s the flight number then?’, I soon found out from the departures board that we were in fact flying to Paris. Of course, my moodiness instantly lifted and I was all loved-up again.
After being chauffer-driven from the airport, we arrived at a stunning boutique hotel. It was covered in ivy and orchids – he had clearly thought every detail through to make this perfect for me.
That evening, we sat in the Trocadéro plaza, which over looks the Eiffel tower, chatting and eating cherries. Eran kept telling me how much he loved me and I casually said it back, but was distracted by the illuminated tower! As we got up to leave, I accidentally stood on some cherries on the floor.
Although I was still fussing around the cherries, he finally got my attention and began the most beautiful speech. Suddenly realising what was happening I thought “Oh my God, I’d better focus because he’s about to propose and I’m missing what he’s saying!”. He romantically got down on one knee, and after seeing the gorgeous ring I screamed “Yes!”. He had used the shape of the diamond of a ring that my dad had found a few years back; this ring had become very sentimental to both me and my sister and he had thoughtfully incorporated it into my engagement ring.
Planning the wedding has been the happiest yet saddest part of my life. What I hoped and dreamed for was coming true, but it was missing the man that had helped make it happen.
Other family members helped make the experience special. My aunty had spotted a silver Vera Wang dress on the David’s Bridal website, and she said, “this is your dress”. Sure enough, when I went in to try it on I cried my heart out as I knew this was the dress for me. I love the fact it’s not white and that I’m wearing something that is unique and beautiful.
I simply couldn’t wait to wear my gown to marry the man I had waited so long for. I just hope somewhere out there, my dad is watching it all.