Sharon Eshuchi, 26, a project coordinator and Amunga Eshuchi, 29, a documentary photographer met at a time when they were both hurting from previous relationships. What began as an opportunity to work together in photography grew into a deep friendship that culminated into marriage. This warm and easygoing couple narrated their love story to ESTHER KIRAGU.
On a cool Friday evening, I am seated at Sharon and Amunga Eshuchi ’s home in Ngara, sipping a glass of juice. I am listening keenly as they narrate their love story.
Their story reminds me of Paulo Coelho words: “My heart might be bruised, but it will recover and become capable of seeing beauty of life once more. It’s happened before, it will happen again, I’m sure.”
This lovely couple met on a work-related assignment at a wedding in September 2011. Amunga was the photographer at the wedding and Sharon, who at the time wanted to give more time to her photography hobby requested to tag along with Amunga and his camera crew so as to learn a few skills on photography. They began working and also spending a lot of time together. Within a short time a strong friendship evolved.
“We became such good friends and would talk often over the phone,” Sharon explains. At the time, both were weary of relationships due to previous experiences and weren’t looking to date. “Dating was the furthest thing on my mind and I was careful not to lead Sharon on. So I kept it really casual,” Amunga says.
Sharon travelled upcountry during the December holidays and it was then that Amunga realised he had become very fond of her. “I missed her company and couldn’t wait for her to return to Nairobi. It became obvious to me that I was attracted to her,” he says affectionately.
Upon Sharon’s return to Nairobi in January 2012, Amunga asked her to be his girlfriend. “It wasn’t really a difficult decision to make because throughout our friendship, Amunga had demonstrated great character and values that I admired,” Sharon explains why she accepted to be Amunga’s girlfriend.
Although the couple admits they had to deal with their hurtful pasts, they nevertheless decided to work on their relationship and build a firm foundation. They spent a lot of time together, getting to know each other better while enjoying each other’s company.
Unique proposal and wedding…
The couple says they didn’t want to just try out to see whether the relationship would work or not, but instead decided to court with the intention of marriage. They began attending premarital counseling classes in preparation for marriage, an experience they describe as eye opening.
On September 8, 2012, Amunga proposed to Sharon in an exceptional way. “My brother had returned to Kenya from overseas and my siblings and I were planning to travel upcountry for some celebrations, so that night we slept early. Amunga however kept awake and in the middle of the night sneaked into my bedroom, slipped a ring on my finger. Startled, I woke up to see a shiny beautiful ring on my finger. He didn’t propose at the time as he wanted to do it at sunrise, my favourite time of the day, ” explains Sharon.
When they felt the time was right, the couple involved their parents and other family members and dowry negotiations and other arrangements were set in motion. Things didn’t go as expected as Amunga faced rejection from Sharon’s mother who eventually did not turn up for their wedding.
Despite the drama, their love story culminated in a beautiful beach wedding on June 30, 2013 at the Word of Life Church, Ukunda, followed by a reception at the same venue.
Their turquoise and canary yellow wedding cost Ksh 500,000 and was financed through personal savings and contributions from friends and family. They sought wedding services from friends who charged them affordable prices.
“We trusted God to provide for the wedding budget and we are thankful He was faithful to us,” says Amunga.
The couple spent their honeymoon at Samaki Lodge in Zanzibar. We wish them God’s blessings in their marriage.
Photography by Gathoni Kinyanjui