Married to My Soulmate and Moving to Australia

Lia Golledge
9 min readDec 10, 2023
Get married to the love of my life after 9 months of meeting for the first time

I got Married on Saturday, 11 November 2023, at 11 am, at the most beautiful venue, Walkabout Creek, in Queensland, Australia, to a man I only met 9 months prior.

When I wrote my New Year’s Resolution last year, I did wrote that I’m going to meet my soulmate this year, but I didn’t expect to get married this quick. (I did a few things before I met him that have helped me accelerate this process of meeting my soulmate. But that’s for another post)

My husband and I met in Bali in January 2023. It was his 40th birthday trip with his mates for a week. We had our first date on Thursday, and he needed to return to Australia on Saturday. Naturally, I thought that nothing serious could get out of this interaction.

Our dinner date turned into ice cream walks to the beach, and we hung out at a beach club five hours later. The next day, we saw each other again, but only a very late part of the night at 11 pm because I was busy living my life, and so was he living his vacation, lol. We went to a very loud bar across the road from La Favela, enjoying some music. So far, we have enjoyed each other’s company.

On day 3, he expressed how sad he would feel going back to Australia, being far from me. This is where I realize that we might be on to something.

When we met in Bali, January 2023

I told him that if we want to pursue this, we need to be ‘serious’ because long distance is no joke. So I started asking him thousands of very deep questions. Things like: Will you move to Indonesia if needed? What are your thoughts about being a provider in the family? Can you consider converting, as I come from a Muslim family? — these are tough questions for someone you know only for 3 days, but he needs to know what he’s signing up for.

I listened to his answers, and I could sense that he really wanted to try to make this work. I can feel his heart and emotions, and that’s where I also ‘commit’ to the process. Ok, let’s do it. We officially start a long-distance something.

Daily Video Calling

The first thing to do is to go to Australia, see where he lives, meet his family, and see if I can fit in. Now, I hate paperwork with all my heart. My passport is an Indonesian passport, one of the most difficult passports to travel.

This is how long the required documents for Australian TOURIST VISA for an Indonesian passport

But from the start, I could see that my husband and I have the same values. We both are very organized. We shared Google Drive and worked as a team to collect the documents needed. I was helped by an agent in Jakarta to apply for the visa, and the process was smooth. Within a couple of weeks, I got my multiple entry visa for 3 years!

The next step is getting the tickets and planning my trip there to visit him, explore Australia, and meet his family for Easter. I will be in Australia for a month for my first trip ever.

Now, remember that we have only known each other for 3 days in Bali. When we Zoom call, and he shared screen before buying me tickets, I froze. My common sense kicked in: Maaaayybee…. for my first trip, I can come for a week? (instead of a month?)

Instead of being upset about my sudden change of heart, my husband was patient with me. He opened a Google Doc and asked me to list down what I worried about, and he listed down what he worried about, and we discussed it. This is the point where I fell in love with him. We’re so similar. Using Google Docs to brainstorm and solve problems is so me, lol.

Google Docs the pro and cons of coming to Australia lol

Long story short, I took the leap of faith and said yes to Australia. I had the best time on my first trip to Brisbane. It was warm summer days; we went to the beautiful beaches around Queensland & NSW, had fish and chips by the water, went to Gold Coast and Byron Bay, met his sister and family, took a road trip to his hometown Taree, and met his mom & partner, met his dad, we did a year worth of trip packed in one month.

In Brisbane, both wearing the sunglasses that we hate from each other lol

This is the crucial month when we really get to know each other. I discovered my triggers, and he discovered his. Meeting your soulmate is only the first step. The next step is to maintain the relationship.

Chillin’ at Gold Coast

He’d been single for 7 years before our relationship, and I was for two years (but badly bruised from my experience of dating in Bali, lol). We need to start the process of loving and trusting again. Thankfully, humor always eases our interaction.

Our trip to Crowdy Head, NSW

I am patient with him, as he is patient with me. My husband is probably one of the most emotionally aware men I’ve ever met in my entire life. He’s in touch with his emotions and mine. He reflects on his actions quickly. He’s kind and loving. At the same time, he has a strong masculine quality of problem-solving and just fixing things.

He visited me in Indonesia for my 40th birthday, and then I took him to see my mom in Jakarta. My mom’s blessing is super important for me to move forward in the relationship. We’re nervous, obviously, because he’s full of tattoos, and my mom is a devout Muslim.

Thankfully, my mom loves him! At the end of the day, my mom wants me to be happy, and she always supports my decision. She’s been doing this since I was a teenager! Something I’m grateful for about my mom.

My 40th birthday in Bali
Meeting my mom in Jakarta

Just after we returned to Brisbane, we went through a difficult time when Shadows, his 15-year-old dog, was sick, and we needed to put him to sleep. I was by his side to comfort and support him in going through this.

Shadows in one of our morning walks

I never had a pet in my adult life, and I also have mixed feelings about dogs after years of conditioning. But Shadows and I became best friends very quick, and it was a tough moment for me as well losing Shads. One thing is for sure, getting through this together has made our bond tighter.

A few weeks after returning to Brisbane, we made a quick trip down south for Nan’s birthday and got to know more family from his dad’s side.

Nan’s 80th birthday

After Shadows passed away, the house felt a bit too big, and my husband decided to move to a smaller house closer to the city. The new house is also a 7-minute walk to the library and one of the biggest shopping malls in Queensland.

DIY moving process, Australia way

One beautiful August night, he took me on a date in the Southbank area, and we had a romantic dinner. I thought it was just a normal date night, so I wore a casual dark grey sweater-like top, wearing my glasses and grey jeans while he looked sharp in a black leather jacket.

I thought it was a normal date

I wanted to continue to a jazz club, but he said he wanted to take me to Kangaroo Point, the first place he took me when I landed in Brisbane. I said sure. We arrived there, and I was happily taking videos and photos of the beautiful city light landscape, not knowing what was going to happen next.

Before I knew it, he was down on his knees and opened a box. It was a dark place, with not much light around us. I can’t see what’s in the box. I thought he was jokingly proposing to me with a pair of earrings that I wanted from TKMaxx, lol.

After a few seconds, I realized that he’s serious and really proposing to me. I screamed, “Whatt??? Whattt???” and then came to my senses and said yes. We kissed; some passersby shouted, “Congratulations!” “That’s a beautiful ring!”

He proposed in the dark. I need to get an iPhone to get better night photo lol

We called all our family and close friends, who were surprised but happy for us. Then, of course, in our true fashion, we’re on to go to the next mission: planning a wedding.

I’d love an outdoor micro wedding, but here, the prices are crazy for a simple venue. But then, after doing some research (aka googling), we individually found a beautiful venue up in the mountain that was within our price range.

My husband emailed them, and they said that they would have a wedding exhibition that weekend. We went there to check them out. It was more beautiful than we imagined it to be. We casually asked them if the date 11.11.23 was available? (I love the number 1111).

They said, yes, the venue is available at 11am.

What?!

It felt right. So my husband glanced at me, and I nodded. He put the downpayment then and there. We’re officially getting married.

This was the first time visiting our wedding venue without knowing we were going to get married there

We have 58 days to organize our wedding. It’s two-fold more difficult as I’m very new to Australia. Thankfully, my husband is very involved in the organizing. During the process, we probably only had one argument in the aisle of Coles about choosing something that I don’t remember what. So I think we managed the wedding organizing well without jeopardizing our relationship.

Wedding dress shopping

Early in the year, I reconnected with my old friend Astri Candrarini and met her husband Garry Schlatter in Brisbane. They are both amazing photographers, and they took our pre-wedding photos and our wedding photos and videos. We’re set to capture the most important memories in our lives!

Garry took our very first-ever photo in Gold Coast
Our pre-wedding photo at Toowoomba Flowers Carnival

It was the most beautiful wedding we can ever imagine, and I’m grateful to be married to the most beautiful man inside and out. We’re surrounded by around 40 family and friends who travel from all around Australia and from Indonesia. We’re forever grateful to have them witnessing our special day.

Just married!

Watch the heartwarming videos when we exchange our vows:

We have stopped to put the next goals over the other. We just want to enjoy the moment and our life together for now. I learned how to cook, do laundry, clean the house, and just be a good housewife, adjusting to the domestic life in Australia. Slow life, is actually perfect for me.

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Lia Golledge

Founder Coach. Fractional CMO Remote Skills Academy. Co-Managing Director Girls in Tech Indonesia. Author of 33 books.