Heart to Heart
The Ochols: From Facebook to the aisle
Posted Thursday, December 19 2013 at 02:00
Height no factor. For many young women, the idea of dating and getting married to a shorter man is perhaps a taboo, but Maurice Ochol did not let this stand in his way. Esther Oluka met the NTV news reporter and his lovely wife Patricia, a communications officer. Maurice told her how a crush and later a friend request on Facebook, won him a lifetime better half.
Oh! Maurice, your wife seems taller than you?
Oh yes, she is, but only slightly.
Does the height difference bother anyone of you?
Maurice: No, it does not. However, during the wedding, I insisted that she puts on flat shoes because I did not want us to appear awkward, especially while taking the still photos.
Patricia: It never bothers me at all. I was attracted to Maurice mostly because of his lovable personality other than his physical appearance. The only time I noticed that my height bothered him was the days before the wedding, no wonder he suggested I wear completely flat shoes.
When did you wed?
Maurice: On August 31, 2013 at Watoto Church, Central and later had our reception at Moonland Gardens near the American Embassy in Nsambya.
Patricia, when did Maurice propose to you?
It was during my birthday on July 31 last year at a place called The Heights in Centenary Park. He proposed to me in front of our friends and workmates. I was wearing a short black dress that day and he was dressed casually - pair of jeans, white shirt and a cream jacket.
What was your parents’ reaction when you told them that you were getting married?
Patricia: They were both happy. However, my mother cautioned me not to let her down. According to her, I was always behaving like a baby.
Maurice: I remember the first time I told them that I had a girlfriend, they were extremely shocked. This is probably because I had never showed them any of my girlfriends before. So, when I told them about my intention to get married, they were extremely happy.
What did you enjoy most on the wedding day?
Maurice: I enjoyed the kiss and I know Patricia did as well.
Patricia: Yes, I did. I remember we kissed for long until the Reverend said it was enough.
Has marriage changed your life in any way?
Maurice: Yes. I have attained more respect than before. My life has also changed because I am now ever cautious in almost everything I do. It has completely changed my thinking.
Patricia: It definitely has. Ever since I got married, some of my friends have distanced themselves.
Let’s go back in time. Briefly tell us how the two of you met.
Maurice: I first saw Patricia at NBS television station where she was doing her internship. I asked one of my male friends at the station about her and went on to send her a friend request on Facebook. When she accepted it, we began communicating more often.
Patricia: We met in 2011, around February. I had just graduated from Uganda Christian University (UCU).
When did the two of you finally start dating?
Maurice: We started dating on July 11, 2011 after I declared my love for her.
How did you react to his love declaration?
Patricia: I was a bit shocked because I did not expect him to reveal that he loved me that fast. I remember trying to dodge him the days that followed but eventually, I gave in and we soon became a couple.
Patricia, what made you fall in love with Maurice?
He is an interesting person. He loves dancing and singing. He is also caring, a thing I realised at the beginning of our friendship. He often called to find out how I was doing. Since I am a very secretive person, Maurice has been one of the few people I feel comfortable discussing personal issues with. It’s funny that before we met, I had always dreamt of meeting Maurice. He was and is still my role model.
Maurice, what was special about Patricia?
She is completely down-to-earth and understanding. When you tell her that something cannot work out, she will understand and not make a fuss over it. I also love the fact that she is calm and quiet, unlike me who is talkative.
Were you seeing other people when you started dating?
Patricia: No. I had actually broken up with someone earlier and had vowed to stay single for some time but everything changed when I met Maurice.
Maurice: I do not know if I should term it as a relationship. But anyway, I was seeing someone, although I was not quite certain where the relationship was headed. But when Patricia crossed my path, I was certain that she was the one for me.
What scared you when you started dating?
Maurice: I was not scared but excited.
Patricia: I was scared that he was in the spotlight and I hated it. We could go to a particular place and everyone was calling his name. I was uncomfortable because I am a private person. I found it so hard to adjust to that when we started dating.
Things are not always rosy when you are together. So, what are some of the things that irritate you about one another?
Maurice: She takes long to open up. For example, when we are hanging out with other people, Patricia will just keep quiet while I do much of the talking. I also hate pushing her to do certain things.
Patricia: He does not open up when something is bothering him. He just keeps quiet. When I insist that he talks to me, he asks me not to bother him. He is too pushy. When he wants me to do something, he will want it done right away.
Do you have special nicknames for each other?
Maurice: Not really. I simply call her Trish, an abbreviation of Patricia.
Patricia: I call him Slooky sometimes. His friends called him that when we started dating. He told me Slooky was his stage name when he was an entertainer in high school.