• Jodi Samuels

I Have Been Married For 18 Years This Week



It’s a tale from long ago. I was 18 and living in Israel for my gap year after high school. Gavin was doing his medical elective at Hadassah hospital. I was with a friend on Ben Yehuda Street and he walked up to me asking if I speak English. I answered with the typical South African “JA”.


We started chatting and the rest, shall we say, is history. There’s an interesting story to our courtship, which I will save for another blog.


For now, I want to raise 18 toasts for 18 years…


Gavin, you came into my life when I was young and searching. You have stood by while I find myself at each stage.


Gavin says being married to me is like being on a high speed car chase — thanks for putting up with it.


We share many passions. Who else would host an average of 50 guests per Shabbat?


Like me, you love to see and experience the world. I know you need one night a week at home and I am glad you are my partner in crime the rest of the time.


Who else would travel to 60 countries with me?


You are an amazing abba to our kids.


When Caily was born and we heard the news that she had Down syndrome, I told you that I really believed God sent us Caily. I told you that we have an open home and where else would God send this baby? You did not skip a beat. You agreed and together we have traveled this journey.


Who else would let me get away with having three kids and NOT changing diapers?


Thanks for always supporting my entrepreneurial passion. You have held roles including legal advisor, financier, shlepper and supporter.


We could shock the world with our spontaneous acts. Traveling four hours to a concert on short notice, making crazy plans just to escape a night — just taking life’s opportunities as they come.


Gav, you have learned to embrace my risky ideas like buying an apartment with a cash advance from a credit card.


For remembering to bring flowers each week.


I am so grateful for your love and focus on learning and bringing Jewishness to our home. The kids learn so much from you.


It’s great to know I have a partner in love and war. We have had many good times and lots of war with Caily and schools. You are a great warrior.


Thanks for thinking the fact that I have a sucker thing (blanket from childhood) is cute.


Thanks for almost always compromising on the air conditioning.


What would a Shabbat table be without your crazy sense of humor?


I cannot forget to mention that you are my best drinking buddy!


The bottom line: You always tell me you believe in me and for that I am grateful.


Metroimmas, how has your husband stood by your side through the years? Share your experiences here.


Originally published: August 2, 2011

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