Do you believe in love at first sight? How about love at second sight? The love story of Alwin and Adeline is nothing short of extra ordinary. In a world where relationships are merely a commodity or a fad, what we have here is definitely a love story fashioned by a humorous maker.
It was a cold winter’s night (cliché), Thursday actually, and trying to get a meeting with these two busy and in demand couple was quite a task. But lo and behold, we finally decided on a time and a date, but a destination was certainly critical in making this an unforgettable interview not just for the couple but for me as well.
After a short stroll along the city’s classy destination of restaurants and bars surrounding Print Hall, we finally agreed on a suitable place, Trustees Bar & Bistro and treated ourselves to a dessert degustation of a five course seasonal sugar extravaganza. Woah..that’s a whole different story in itself.
Here’s a story about a couple who believe in forever and a love that is pleasing to God. Look forward to lots of laughs and smiles – my cheeks hurt from smiling throughout the evening from the cheesiness, yours will too as you immerse in the interview.
Vincent (V): What was your impression of each other when you first met?
Alwin (Al): When I first met Adeline I thought that she was cute and cheeky because the first question that she asked me after the second time I saw her was, “Are you stalking me?”
Adeline (Ad): When I first met Alwin, my friend and I were in a shopping mall and on that day I really didn’t expect to meet anyone, so I was just in my pyjamas (laughing). It was funny, a mutual friend introduced us and when I met Alwin I thought, okay, he’s a nice guy and that was pretty much it.
V: What were your most memorable moments when you were dating or during your relationship?
Al: I guess the most memorable for me would be spending time with Adeline in the simplest things such as, smiling at each other during a meal and being able to serve the Lord together at mass or in youth ministry events. And those moments when you share your emotions and ups and downs with each other with so much honesty. I love that.
Ad: For me the most memorable highlight of our relationship was during Adoration at the Australian Catholic Youth Festival last December in Adelaide. I had this thought; it must’ve come from God because in the past I had a lot of questions asking why I am behaving the way I did. During Adoration it finally came upon me and I started crying and the first thing I wanted to do was to share it with Alwin. Sharing that with him at that moment opened up our relationship in another level as I was able to share with him something that was deep and personal, something I hold on very tight to.
V: How did you know that he or she was the one?
Al: I guess there’s no exact moment when I knew that Adeline was the one that I wanted to marry. I believe it’s a combination of many wonderful moments. As time went by I could see and realised that I can live with her for the rest of my life.
When I really had to reflect on our relationship I asked myself a few questions such as, does her personality compliment mine? She is very patient and I’ve got a very bad temper, I could see that she really compliments me. She also cools me down when I am really angry or start throwing a tantrum.
Also affirmation by the important people in my life played a big role.
Ad: To have a practicing Catholic as a boyfriend was a very important factor. Once I found out that he was a practicing Catholic and witnessing how he serves God helped me in my decision.
Also when I realised that he’s a great provider, as he’s always looking out for me and taking care of me.
V: When you were faced with challenges in your relationship, how did you overcome it?
Al: We always look at God first and pray to the Lord to help us get through the challenges together rather than just by ourselves. We always ask Him to come into our relationship to walk and journey with us.
I believe that it’s very powerful to work through the challenges together with God.
Ad: It was very different when we first started in comparison to where we are now. (Laughing)
When we first started it was really funny as we couldn’t stand each other. We would always yell, but I think the turning point came when we were more serious about getting married and then we realised that we needed a better way at solving things. That’s when I started looking for a practicing married couple to mentor our relationship.
A priest once told us, “when you argue and want to talk it out, hold your hands together and in that way you really can’t get too mad with one another,” and I think that was really good way of helping us overcome our problems.
V: What do you love most about each other?
Al: I love how patient she is, to a point that she will love the most annoying guy in the world.
I really love her smile and her laughter as it really brightens up my day. I love the fact that she trusts me. She has trust and confidence in me and she is able to open up herself in what she’s thinking and I really love that. I really like her character and her very positive attitude.
Ad: There’s many things I love about Alwin and that’s why we’re married but I think one of the many things I like about him is that he makes me laugh. I actually think he is very funny. (Both giggle)
I am happy with him plus he just gives me a sense of security. He’s a provider, and he would step up his game when he knows he is needed.
The stunning couple got married at Alwin’s home Parish, Santa Clara in Bentley on a stormy and cold autumn morning, last 21 May. This was followed by a so called “light refreshments”, but wasn’t really light as there were enough remarkable and substantial food to feed all their hungry guests.
But of course that wasn’t enough for the couple that the week after they had a massive and extravagant reception at Sheraton Restaurant in Melaka, Malaysia which I had the privilege to attend and enjoy immensely.
V: How did you personally prepare for your marriage?
Al: I tried to prepare my mental state by reading relevant articles about marriage. But what really helped was talking to couples or married men that I look up to and asking those important questions. Also praying to the Lord and asking Him to bless our relationship and help us go through the engagement period.
Ad: I personally prayed to the Blessed Mother a lot. Through my life she has always been there for me. When I left home for university, I wasn’t that interested to go to Church anymore. But it was Our Lady that brought me back. She was just always watching out for me. I prayed to her and said, ‘Blessed Mother as I prepare for my marriage, I pray that you show me that he is the right man that I should marry.’ She always guided throughout my discernment.
V: How has serving the Church together impacted or strengthened your relationship?
Al: When we serve in the ministry we are basically bringing people closer to the Lord and that sort of directly and indirectly brought us closer to Him and to one another. We believe that it’s our faith that was strengthened and enriched through the ministries that we were involved in and that also helped us develop a Christ centred relationship.
Ad: I feel that when a couple serves in a ministry together it’s a test in itself. When you’re dating someone sometimes you may not be able to see certain sides of them but when you serve in ministry and forced to work together you begin to learn more about each other and see each other’s strengths and weaknesses.
And for us personally, that is the case. I learnt more things about Alwin and how he works through difficult situations.
Alwin and Adeline work closely with many single people in the Archdiocese, especially in their own parish. Ahem! Here are some words of wisdom from the couple.
V: What do you think young people face today in their search for love?
Al: Self-esteem and self-image. Young people who have a low self-esteem and self-image thinks that they are not worthy. There is no value of self. A lot of them first don’t learn to love themselves so they are unable to love other people. I guess what is quite common is that they are not sure what they want or not sure what their calling is.
Ad: I think there’s a few challenges, one being the fact they single people think that they are not worth it because of the amount of negativity that they see in social media. Or some come from broken families which has affected their worth and personal value. They feel that they are not worth waiting for and to be loved. I guess young people now days have access to instant gratification which is also a key obstacle.
V: What tips do you have for young people who are searching for true love?
Al: Young people should fix their eyes on the Lord. That is the first thing.
If the Lord will put you through a situation he will guide you through that situation as well. You need to pray and ask the Lord what your calling may be, then learn to discern what your greater calling is.
Leave it to the Lord and trust in Him.
Ad: I agree with Alwin. To love is to first love yourself. And also, go out and meet people. If you know what kind of a partner you want, for example if you want a practicing Catholic then you need to be out and about with the right kind of people and environment. You need to be meeting new people and making new friends. It always happens when you least expect it to. Don’t just go looking around and think is she the one? is he the one? Don’t make it complicated.
Alwin and Adeline made a choice from the very start of their marriage to invite Jesus in to their relationship, hence that is why they see Jesus Christ in each other. For the couple, Jesus must be in the centre of their relationship.
“They key to our relationship is that we pray together,” Adeline said.
Before I ended my interview with the couple I asked them one final important question.
V: Who is the better cook?
Alwin: I’m good at certain things and Adeline is good at certain things, but generally I think that I am the better cook.
Adeline: It’s a subjective question, a better cook based on my opinion and my taste… then its ME!
When Alwin first set his sight on Adeline, there was an uncertainty but a longing and desire. But the second time they bumped into each other it was already destiny and God as we know it is a humorous and a good God.
He placed two different individuals with different characteristics and personality and made them one. Surely, when it comes to Alwin and Adeline there is love at second sight!
Let me end with this very popular quote, ‘Love is patient, love is kind, love does not insist on its own way. Love bears all things, believes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.” 1 Corinthians 13
This truly represents what this couple is all about. This is what we should all strive for, as God intended love to be.
By Vincent Haber