Eric and Niamh
The beautiful love story of Eric and Niamh that won our hearts over, as told by Eric. Thank you to everyone who submitted an entry into our Engagement Photo Shoot Contest. We were so touched by all of your submissions and had a difficult time choosing from so many wonderful love stories. We wish you much love and happiness as you embark on your lives together ❤
Eric and Niamh’s love story:
Our story is far from typical, but I never get tired of telling it. My roommate from freshman year of college had met an Irish girl the summer before college and they dated long-distance throughout all four years of school. After graduation, he moved to Dublin to be with her. My family was taking a trip to Europe that summer, so I decided to make a quick stop to Ireland myself to visit Grant. He was living in a house with five other people, and one of those people was my now fiancé, Niamh.
I always say it was love at second sight, because we only chatted briefly when we first met, but when I got to properly talk to her, I knew she was the one. I was only there for four days, but the memories lingered the rest of the year. I remember the quick kiss we shared and playing back every moment, wondering if I’d ever see her again.
She told me that she would be moving to Toronto that September, only a quick trip north for this Long Island native. We chatted for months, on and off, but she was reluctant to give me a chance, and who could blame her? Between leaving her whole life behind, moving to a new city, finding a new job and having to make new friends, the last thing she needed was a long-distance boyfriend.
I like to joke that I wore her down, because eventually she gave in and invited me up to Toronto. I booked my first trip to Canada in January of 2015. Our first date was a Raptors game and some drinks at the Loose Moose. The next night after dinner on Bloor, we officially started dating.
After that it was over two years of flights back and forth from Toronto to New York, each of us alternating ever month. It was a struggle at times (and quite expensive) but neither of us wanted to give up. By the end of 2016, we began to ask some serious questions about our future together and how we could continue to make this work. Now, I’ve never been one to believe in fate, but what happened next made me reconsider.
Niamh works in business so I had always assumed that she would move to New York considering all the opportunities that would be there for her. I work in soccer, specifically social media, so my employment options are much more limited. I told her that I wouldn’t move to Toronto for any old job, it would have to be on that would advance my career. “The only way I’d move to Canada is if Toronto FC offers me a job,” I said almost half-joking. Lo and behold, against all odds, I got a job offer in February and moved to Toronto in March.
Ever since then, we’ve been living together downtown and loving life. There was definitely an adjustment period after going from long-distance straight into living together, but we’ve hit our stride. It hasn’t been the simplest path, but we wouldn’t change a thing and can’t wait to see what’s next.
Eric and Niamh’s marriage proposal:
Niamh was going home to Ireland for her godson’s communion, but I told her that I wasn’t able to attend due to my work schedule. However, I decided to surprise her by hopping on a flight with my family and ring in tow.
I got on the phone with her sister to coordinate the whole plan (which did a number on my nerves) but it all worked out perfectly. I kept telling her that I wouldn’t propose until after my brother’s wedding (this July) so she was caught totally off guard. Her family was going on a trip to the Cliffs of Moher for a day out in the sun, but little did she know I’d be waiting alongside the cliffs. When she got to the bottom of the hill, I took her to a picturesque point and got down on one knee in what made for a truly unforgettable occasion.
Post Script (September 19, 2018): We reveal the engagement photos in our Captain’s Blog, here.