What you need to know:
Sharon Mutoni had lost her mother as a young girl. However, although she felt this gap in the beginning, it was filled by her aunt, who became her second mother. So, when Julius Katoto stayed by her side when her aunt passed on, she knew he would be there no matter what.
When Julius Ndikuno Katoto met Sharon Mutoni, she was an intern at Uganda Registration Services Bureau (URSB), still pursuing her Bachelor’s degree in industrial and organisational psychology. A mutual friend initiated a connection that did not seem to go anywhere, until fate intervened in 2019.
“I was single and had not dated anyone for a while. When my friend told me about this ‘girl’ she thought was perfect for me, I did not want to disappoint her so I agreed to the plan,” he recounts.
Although he was hesitant to start another relationship, Katoto took Mutoni’s number and reached out. However, after a few brief chats, communication stopped. According to Mutoni, he ‘ghosted’ her.
When the country was placed under lockdown as a result of Covid-19, many were forced to stay home, including Katoto. With too much idle time on his hands, he would often check out Mutoni’s WhatsApp status and find himself laughing at her updates.
“They were funny but I did not tell her. We would occasionally exchange greetings but that was it. But her status updates were so funny they kept me entertained and took my mind off what was happening,” he says.
Four months later, (after the first lockdown) they started chatting more often.
“Because of her very entertaining updates, I reached out to her. I knew that chatting to someone that hilarious would definitely lift my spirits. I was also interested in knowing the person behind these status updates. After some time chatting and building a friendship, I asked her out on a date,” he says.
“The first time he asked me out, I refused and told him I was busy. However, four days later, on July 18, we met,” she says.
Before this meeting, Katoto had been hesitant to go out on any date because many times, he had gone out but left the date disappointed. Many of the women he met, he says, came with a lot of expectations and demands, especially for a first date. However, with his friend’s insistence, he agreed to meet Mutoni, if only to please his friend.
“But she was different. She came to the date casually smart (not overdressed). And because she was so calm and disciplined, I wanted to know more about her; her relationship with God and her family, among other things,” she says.
And when she asked to leave the date earlier than planned, he probed, thinking she was not telling the truth. However, she told him she was going back home to take care of her 81-year-old mother. He later learnt that when her mother passed on, she had started living with her aunt, who had now become her second mother. The fact that she was able to share something so personal increased Katoto’s trust in her and this brought them even closer.
As he drove her home to Gayaza in Wakiso District, he was quiet while she did most of the talking.
“I saw how respectful she was. I liked most things about her and I wanted to see her again, but she was still indecisive,” he says.
In order to meet her again, Katoto told Mutoni he had something very important to tell her. And when they met, he declared his intentions of wanting their relationship to be more than just a friendship.
“I knew what I wanted and did not want to play games of being friends first. I knew that with time, we would get to know each other better and figure out our lives along the way,” Katoto says.
“Although I thought this was too sudden, a friend had assured me he was a good man. So, I told him I was ready if he was. I was going all in. I knew there was a possibility it might not work out but I left all this to God and hope for the best,” she says, adding that the one reason she felt that he was the one was the fact that he had not judged her after telling him about her family.
Four months later, Mutoni and all her family members, including her old mother fell ill and although others fully recovered, her mother died in January 2021, just a few days before her birthday. Her firm foundation was gone, and she felt as if she had lost everything.
However, during this trying time, Katoto did not leave her side. He spent almost a week visiting from the time her mother died to when she was laid to rest. He wanted to make sure she was okay and she noticed.
On her birthday, Katoto organised an intimate party to cheer her up. After this party, Mutoni knew for sure that this was the man she had been praying for and she was grateful that he had come her way.
On October 27, 2022, Katoto proposed to Mutoni.
“She had passed all my tests. She was honest with money, hardworking and genuinely shared what she had with family and friends,” he says.
Katoto remembers when he was stranded and needed money, Mutoni gave it to him without question. He says she was also very welcoming to his family and friends, and when he told them about his intention to propose, they all welcomed the idea and helped him prepare.
“I wanted it to be memorable because I knew our wedding would take some time to plan. But with this proposal, I wanted her to be assured that one day, I would make it official in the presence of all our family and friends,” he says.
Mutoni was tricked into planning the proposal, thinking it was a friend’s.
He wanted to visit her parents in December but he did not have enough money. She advised him to take his time, even though her family was pressing her to organise the kukyaala.
In February, Katoto met Mutoni’s uncle and agreed to visit her family on April 1, which the family did not see fit and instead agreed on April 2. Their introduction took place on August 12, and the wedding two weeks later.
The couple went to St Andrew’s Church in Bukoto, Kampala, for premarital counselling. Among the many things they learnt was to stick to their roles and responsibilities as a married couple, always finding time for each other even when they finally have children.
The couple advise those intending to get married to avoid taking too much time before making a decision.
Mutoni advises couples to get married when still young so that they have time to enjoy each other’s company before children come in. The couple also advise one to pray over everything, committing oneself, being patient open and submissive.