Our Love Story

The Midlands MagazineFebruary 23, 2023

Roses are red, violets are blue, and we have something special in store for you! With Valentine’s Day around the corner, we look at four married couples from all walks of life, how they met, and how long they’ve been keeping the loving flames stoked. Whether you are single, in a relationship, engaged, married or “it’s complicated”, a little love inspiration can go a long way and we hope this will inspire you to define, or find, your own love story.


Christopher and Ragmah Bourne

Christopher and I met through a mutual colleague. On the day we met, 5 March 2016, I saw this sad, tall person, but he was not carrying his height well. He was just so outwardly sad. It is alleged that I flirted with him.

A few days later, I made comms with him to ask how he was doing, and whether “the lack of a wedding ring on his finger was a permanent feature”. He immediately put his guard up and told me that he was not interested in a relationship and would not be for a long time. I said to him that I just wanted to be friends. With that, I started praying for him that he meets someone that can bring back some joy in his life.

Eight months later, out of the blue, he asked me to date. At that time, I had my guard up and was not sure whether he was serious. He told me that he had heard a clear word from God that I was the one he should date. Saying that melted my heart, and I knew the Lord had answered our prayers.

A year later, in 2017, Christopher and I committed our lives to the Lord in holy matrimony. Christopher loves the Lord more than he loves me and that is how we keep our love alive, and vice versa. We talk about how we feel. We take couples retreats and check in on how we are feeling about our relationship regularly.


What does love mean to you?

Love is when you buy one set of pajamas and nobody wears them (only kidding!). Love means that you do not take another person’s heart lightly. Love means “Let’s Only take Vows that we are both willing to Execute” for the rest of our living years together.



John and Vicky de Pinna

We met in 1974 at a friend’s house. Vicky was friends with my brother’s girlfriend, and we got talking. Vicky was a nurse and I was studying engineering. I met her again a few months later at our house and that is where this whole story started. She stole my heart and since then we have never been apart. On 15 April 1978, we were married at St Michaels Church in Bryanston.


What does love mean to you?

From the time we entered into our covenant and made that promise before God, we realised that we could no longer do the things that we used to do. We became one with each other. We retained our character and personality (because, after all, that’s what we loved about each other), but we became one.

It’s so important to be honest, authentic and transparent with each other. The Word of God puts it so well: “clean hands, and a pure heart.” It’s about having a genuine, soft heart that does not carry pride, selfishness or a dishonest agenda or gain.

Love should bring freedom and fill you with joy. Love does not seek its own. Love each other continually. It’s a decision we made 44 years ago and it’s never changed. It’s not a feeling. Our love for each other is unconditional, not based on performance, and sets us free from feeling the need to earn or deserve it.


Keren Stanley and Nikita Grange

Keren and Nikita met through a mutual friend in 2013, began dating that night, and eloped a year later. For the first four months they were together, they had a long-distance relationship. There was not a day they didn’t talk, which they feel laid the foundation for their bond and how they communicate. They have been married for eight years.


What does love mean to you?

Nikita: For us, love has been the practice of creating space and providing support for each other to become who we want to be. It is presence and a deep intimacy, where there is no need to hide or try to control the other. These experiences do come up, but it’s just an opportunity to lean into love even more. We are a reflection of each other and so the relationship becomes a place of discovery and mutual awakening.

One of the most profound lessons Ker and our relationship has shown me is that when I try to cling to the relationship, or use him to give me a sense of security, validation or meaning, I constrict love and the relationship stagnates. When I relinquish control and give these things to myself, we both experience more love and freedom than I imagined possible. It’s a beautiful paradox.

Keren: I don’t really know how to explain love but I know what it feels and looks like. Love is the feeling of knowing that I can share all of myself with Nik, especially when I feel vulnerable or challenged. She’s my life co-pilot and we accept all of each other so I always feel transparent and open.

It looks like play, having fun and being best friends. It looks like a life created and shared together – a life that allows us to be our own individuals with our own interests and hobbies as well as have shared activities. It looks like always being curious about each other – a curiosity that leads to learning about ourselves and each other.

We had agreed early on in our relationship that we wanted to help each other realise our individual freedom, so we hold each other to our true potential and encourage the best out of each other. We share this purpose and it’s been an anchor in the love we’ve cultivated.


Rob and Ann Guest

We have been married for 49 very happy years. We met when I introduced my friend to Rob’s best friend and they married. They tried to get us together but it didn’t work. Rob was still putting himself through varsity and I was about to go to Europe with three other girls on an extended eight-month tour. Later, they tried again and this time the timing was right.

We met again at a friend’s braai and Rob drove me home afterwards. Lo and behold, that day sealed our fate. We kissed goodnight on the porch of my parent’s home when he dropped me off. After less than a year, we were sitting next to a waterfall flowing into a fish pond with the peaceful sound of running water in the background, and Rob finally built up the courage to propose. Rob is a very good cook and handy around the house -altogether a wonderful husband! It’s a case of “happy wife, happy life”.


What does love mean to you?

It is that feeling of emptiness in the pit of your stomach when your partner has been away from you for a few weeks or even days. It is the excitement of the meeting when you are once more together. It is the contentment of waking up next to the one who has chosen you (and you them). It is being together in the kitchen, preparing a meal together. But mainly it is being completely comfortable with your partner through thick and thin, no matter what the situation is.


Words by: Alicia du Plessis