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  • Writer's pictureJasmine Norwood-Dioulo

10 years with my soulmate! Here’s what’s worked for us…

Last week made 10 years with the man of my dreams.

In his arms -- my fave place to be since 2011 ;-) (photo: La Jolla, Ca -- 2019)

How in the world has it been 10 years since the night we met!?

10 years and still!

He still gives me butterflies. Still makes me blush Like crazy!

And the rumors are TRUE — we may…or may not have met in a club. 🤫

One of our favorite nights in Belgrade, Serbia! -- 2012

You can hear our full (+ hilarious) “how we met story”on a podcast episode we did here in Tokyo called, "Resilient Love":

When the stars aligned and our worlds collided, I was 23 and Julian was 27. Since then, there’s been endless growth and a love and trust that have truly grown deeper by the day.

Quick usie snapped on a Blackberry on our FIRST DATE! Washington, DC -- 2011

Career changes, international moves, long distance love, answered callings, babieeees! Breathtaking highs and a couple of strenuous lows. But one thing about us, we fight together. Always.

And it's true what they say, pressure really does make diamonds!

Dancing in the kitchen a few days before we moved + Julian left for the Middle East -- Virginia, 2018

I‘m so incredibly thankful to be building a life with Julian and to have a front row seat to the way God is using him to lead our family and to impact the world.

No doubt about it, God brought us together so we could grow into the individuals he needs us to be, to do the work He’s called us to do in this life.

Whew! I’m crazy grateful neither one of us missed out on our greatest blessing — this union!

Thank goodness for premarital counseling, perspective to always see the bigger picture, and great sense of humors! (MAJOR marriage keys!!!)

April 23, 2016 -- Private Island off the coast of Aruba! Cheers to forever!

The most perfect evening! April 23, 2016 -- Private Island off the coast of Aruba!

The other night, after Julian tucked Savvy in, and I did my stealthy ninja moves to put sleeping Baby Nile in his bedside bassinet, I asked Julian what advice he would give to couples that are hoping to be in it for the long haul.

Here were some of the gems that came of that convo:

1. You are each others mirrors — There are no limits to how much you can grow when you have an accountability partner.
2. It’s bigger than you — Understanding that there’s a bigger purpose and reason why you are together…The calling on your individual lives but also the calling on your union and the way you are supposed to impact your friends, family, community, the world.
3. Have the hard convos — Don’t shy away from hard times, tough discussions and disagreements. This is where the growth happens!
4. It’s never 50/50 — you and your partner will have different amounts to pour in to the relationship at different times, and the ways you pour into the relationship will look different and thank goodness for that! There’s someone to keep you, the relationship, and life afloat when you aren’t able and vice versa.
5. Laugh, dance, date, TALK, have fun!!!
Surprise engagement celebration Julian planned! Washington, DC -- 2014

Of course, always remember — different strokes for different folks, these are just a few things we’ve clung to over the years.

Cheers to a lifetime of growing, serving, loving, adventuring, and changing the world together!

If you need me, you can find me living my dream life with my dream man and our dream babes.

Gosh, how is any of it even real?!

We thank God.

Dioulo Party of 4! In our Tokyo home -- 2021 (Nile 7 mos, Sav 3.5 yo)

Love Always.


A few sweet moments from over the years...

Chugging hot cocoa -- Tokyo 2020 (2 yo Sav, Preggo w Nile)

Savvy's dedication -- San Diego, Ca. 2019

Love a backseat pic! Washington, DC -- 2017

Baby Moon, Miyazaki, Japan -- 2020

Always celebrating love! Our good friends' wedding. Georgia 2017

Hiking with Bella! Maryland -- 2016

Odawara Castle -- Japan 2020 (Sav almost 2yo)

Another epic night in Serbia! -- 2013
La Jolla, Ca -- 2019

Tokyo! Preggo w Nile -- 2020

One of Julian's bday parties! You know you've been together long when you can't remember which bday it was! lol -- Washington, DC

Nile's homebirth! Tokyo -- March 2021

Julian's first night home from Saudi Arabia! -- Chicago 2014

Mt Fuji with the little babes! -- Mother's Day 2021

Legacy!!! -- Tokyo 2021 (Sav 3.5yo, Nile 7 mo)


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