It’s a big, wide and noisy world isn’t it? But in all of these, it’s beautiful how Oreva and Jimi have found a home and a safe place in each other. Priceless!
Join us on this special annual edition as Oreva and Jimi share a truckload of inspiration filled with love, beauty and brilliance.
Here’s To An Annual Celebration of Inspiring Couples in The Creative Industry
Being a Creative is a lot in a world full of ‘noise.’ To find someone who can listen, relate with your words, your dreams, the happy tears, and even the challenging moments is one of the best gifts to have, not just for a moment, but for a lifetime. We understand that having the right partner can make life a lot more enjoyable and fulfilling. Having someone to support your creative journey in all sincerity and love all you do and all you are is a priceless gift.
Enjoy and Stay Inspired.
Hello ICON To Oreva: As a stunning poet, storyteller and author, can you share some highlights of how your husband has contributed to the growth of your creative journey?
Oreva: Hmmm…. So you know how people will tell you you are not supposed to have too many dreams because your partner might be intimidated by that. Jimmy is like my sounding board. When I have the craziest ideas, I’m about to say, babe, what do you think about this and run it by him, and then sometimes he is like, this one we cannot do it but this one we can do it and I’m going to find ways to help you do it.
Every time that I have a project to do, he is always helping me. When I released my E.P last year, nobody was as stressed as him because I was always saying is this okay, is this good enough and he is like it’s okay babe. You are being a perfectionist about this, let it go. This isn’t let’s tweak this line. He even wrote the melody part for the last track “Shine.” His voice is in it because he wanted to make it work. If I’m going to have a show or an event, he is always the one who says how can we make this work. How can we get this done? Yes, he is really supportive about stuff like that. When I write stuff, I force him to read it and listen to it before it goes out. Whether he is in the mood or not.
Hello ICON To Jimi: What will you consider most fulfilling about having the right partner?
Jimmy: That is a very difficult question to answer. There are a lot of fulfilling things because I can’t not pick one over the other but I think having someone in your corner is something that we underrate in this world. I grew up as an only boy and I had all sisters. They made better friends than I could as a child and I only started making friends as an adult. I had to learn how to be sociable because I was always in my corner. I’ve never really had someone I could call a friend and tell everything to. I think the most fulfilling part of being with her is that she is that person to me. She is home and it is easy for me to be myself around her. This is something I probably did not have before.
I remember when I met her and how it changed my life. It felt like I’ve found someone that I could go and be everywhere with. I think that’s the most fulfilling part for me.
Hello ICON To Either Oreva or Jimi: How did you meet? Was it love at first sight?
Oreva: It was not love at first sight for me at all.
Jimi: It was for me.
Hello ICON To Oreva: Oh it was a process, can you walk us through it?
Oreva: We met in church, our version of events is slightly different but I think mine is the best one. We met at church, he was in the protocol unit, serving at the door so he was standing at the door. It was a weekday service. At that time, I had not fully started going to his church because I was still under my parent’s roof and they wouldn’t let me go to another church. So what was happening was I would go to his church for mid week services and then go to my parents church on Sundays. So it was one of those mid-week services, and after church, he cornered me in a place. After church, I was coming out and the only reason why I came to church was that someone was supposed to take me home. The guy did not come to church, so I stood outside trying to call my friend who I was supposed to go home with and he came to talk to me. We talked and after talking, we realized that our houses weren’t far from each other. So he offered to take me home. There was a bit of traffic so I had to come down and take a bike so he collected my number to “make sure I got home safe.” The next day we spoke and kept at it.
Hello ICON To Oreva: What was your first attraction to him?
Oreva: My first attraction to him was obviously the kindness of his heart. He is really kind. I’m a sucker for sweet stuff, sweet people. He is not just kind to me, he is kind to people around him and it’s something I really like and appreciate because I grew up around a lot of kindness so typically, I’m very drawn to that. That was the first thing that attracted me. I remember the first day we spoke, he went to my blog (that was the best way to get my attention), read something I’ve written and made a comment on it. That was very observant for me so that was the first attractive thing aside from his obvious “handsomeness.”
Hello ICON To Oreva: What do you think has kept the love?
Oreva: I’ll not be honest if I say there’s one thing. There’s one thing I always say, love is a choice and that means everyday I’m going to wake up and choose to be with you. And God is an important part of our union. On our wedding day, I did not just make a promise to him, I was making a promise to God saying that I would stay and see this through.
One of the things that keeps me even on days when I just want to know his head is I remember this is a promise that was made to stay and that always keeps me grounded. I can go back to God and be like I made a promise to you, so I am going to stay.
Hello ICON To Jimi: “How easy it is to be Me with you. I’ve hardly felt at home anywhere, but with you I can be everything without fear. These are some of your words about Oreva, you also call her your ‘safe space’ which we think is just as it should be. What was that one thing that made you know she is ‘the one’?
Jimi: Like you already know, I knew I was going to marry her from the first time I saw her even without speaking to her, and it wasn’t just the physical attraction. I don’t know… it was just something in me that clicked. This is your wife. I was drawn to her so I watched her the entire service. Also, I’ve been in a lot of relationships in the past with women. I was begging to love God the way I would and it felt like I was a terrible person for always wanting them to be more devout in their faith. I wanted someone that loves God for themselves and I wanted to be with someone like that. When we were driving that night, one of the things that solidified it for me was that she had this alarm by 10 o’clock saying “time out with Abba” and I’m like this girl even prays on her own….lol wife material and that’s when I knew I’m not going back, I’m going right ahead. It was easy, it wasn’t stressful and I went with it.
Hello ICON To Oreva and Jimi: How do you both best manage challenging times?
Jimi:: There’s a lot of God factor in it. Before you are a wife or husband, you are a child of God with a responsibility to live by faith and not by sight. To be led by the Spirit. I always try to show the fruits of the Spirit in those challenging times. What we try to remember is our value to God, what we owe and feel is responsible for us to do from the spiritual standpoint of “ What would God do in this situation.” It’s one of the things I admire about my wife, she’s someone who is able to come out of her emotional state and say I wanted to do something but God said I should do this and I’m going to do it. It shocks me because it is interesting. It is not easy especially when you are really emotional or sad and going through some challenging times, doing what God wants instead of what you want is one major thing that has helped us.
Another thing is we speak to each other and talk about what we are feeling and we have the “no yelling” policy, so you must talk about whatever it is and I’m very proud of it that we can sit down and talk. That has really helped because these are the sort of things that can hurt your partner. I feel these two things are the ways we’ve dealt with the challenges.
Oreva: (To chip in something) Challenges won’t last, it will pass. One thing that has also helped is by practicing what I call little pockets of joy. Find something in your day that makes you smile, intentionally go out of your day to smile and be with someone that makes you smile.
Jimi: Even when we have financial challenges, one thing I’ve noticed is that we don’t care, we sort out what we can and leave the rest to God. We know we are not under pressure from each other and do what we can.
Hello ICON To Oreva and Jimi: Social media somewhat makes the picture of love, marriage and relationships quite blurry sometimes. One moment we see love everywhere, the next moment we hear breakup stories. But these words below by X-Wam (one of our pioneer interviewees on the love series) makes the picture clearer: “Understand what you see is not the complete story, do not assume to know. Strength, power, independence, wisdom, love is just beneath the eye catching cover.”
To either Oreva or Jimi: Can you please share some quick tips on how couples can better manage social media and its influence on their relationships?
Jimi: People tend to forget that nobody will show anything ugly in front of the camera. The last time someone tried to do that, a lot of people had weird opinions on it. The truth is, every relationship has challenges or issues. No relationship is perfect. Why? There are no perfect human beings. We are living in a world of imperfect people made perfect by God. At the end of the day, no one is perfect and you can’t expect that from your partner. So if you understand the value of grace and give it to your friend, you will do so to your partner.
There’s something we do if we are not in a good place, we do not post in order not to express emotions that are not real. I believe Romance plays a huge part in keeping the butterfly alive. Yes love is a choice but there’s a point in time when you don’t feel like it. Naturally bad things will happen but you have to intentionally grow with the good things and that’s where romance comes in. We’ve decided that relationships have bad PR, we just want to show that relationships can be good. If you read our caption, you will see the reality of what we talk about and that’s the same way we express ourselves even indoors.
Handling social media is to be secure first in yourself and be able to say this is who we are no matter the comment online, it shouldn’t define your happiness. At the end of the day, social media expectations should not be the validation of your relationship. Validation should be gotten internally and not elsewhere.
Hello ICON To Jimi: Who was the first person you told about Oreva?
Jimi: I used to leave with my guys before so that particular Sunday when we met, we all drove home together, so after dropping her off, we just started talking about her and how she flowed. It felt like she already knew our inside jokes. Basically, they knew about it immediately and ensured it was a community ‘toasting’…lol.
Hello ICON To Oreva: What song best describes your marriage?
Oreva: Omo….There cannot be one song. It has to be an album because marriage is an album situation. I can’t pick one to encapsulate the entire thing.
Jimi: Beauty Mark by Ciara, You and Me by James T.W., Heaven’s Knife, Biblical, Butterfly, Say You Won’t Let Go, Heaven by Susu and Banky W.
Hello ICON To Oreva and Jimi: What does Art mean to you?
Oreva: Expression of thoughts and emotions.
Jimi: Visual representation of our inspiration and mind.
Hello ICON To Oreva: As creatives, we understand the high tendencies of getting stressed out even while pursuing our passion. There are days when even depression may creep in or just that inexplicable feeling of overwhelmingness. Do you have any relatable experience to this? If so, how are you able to manage and thrive beyond phases like this? Any quick tips on ‘Mental Health for Creatives.’
Oreva: The body knows how to take what it needs and that relates to your mind. So if you are creative all the time, you will eventually burn out. It always makes sense to take a rest or break When your job is giving you stress, always have what to fall back to before going back to what you were going before. It brings about clarity.
Jimi: Taking a break doesn’t necessarily mean traveling to the Bahamas. Just staying indoors during weekends, sleeping and watching a movie without feeling guilty gives you energy to come back and face the challenges. It’s a rinse-and-repeat thing.
Hello ICON To Jimi: Do you feel creatives in developed countries are at advantage than those in developing countries?
Jimi: Definitely. There are like a myriad of reasons why they are more at an advantage than developing countries. Easy accessibility to things and places that will generally help you to increase as a creative. What makes creatives burnout is the fact that.
They need to make money through their art. In developed countries, there’s a structure that’s working already and they are not worried about most of the things we worry about. Here, we are doing creative for livelihood rather than an inspiration and that cripples creativity. In developing countries, we don’t have access to basic things that give creatives the ability to thrive and be in their element. So yes, creatives in developed countries are more at an advantage than us.
Hello ICON To Oreva and Jimi: What does success mean to you?
Jimi: Success means peace and comfort and doing what God wants me to do. The fact that God says to do something and I do it, brings peace and comfort to me
Oreva: The question is tricky. To me, it means doing what is right to do per the time. If I’m able to go through the day in a way I ought to, that’s success for me. I’m a sucker for timing.
Hello ICON To Oreva and Jimi: Let’s go a little poetic: If poetry is a rainbow and you have a choice of one color in that pallette, what would that be and why?
Oreva: Yellow because it’s my favourite color. It reminds me of sunshine. One of my favorite things about the sun is how it shines even when things are bad, it continues to shine and be the sun regardless.
Jimi: Indigo or violet. It connotes completion for me. A full package; love, sadness, laughter, and everything together.
Massive Love Oreva and Jimi!
The ICONIC Team.