One of Nigeria’s leading business coaches and often referred to as the business fixer, Tricia Ikponmwonba now wishes to be called Tricia Olufemi-Olumide, having joyfully tied the know with her handsome heartthrob, Olufemi-Olumide.
Tricia stumbled on a report on small businesses in Nigeria and that heralded the beginning of her success story.
Her husband, Olufemi Olumide is a serial entrepreneur who has helped numerous businesses from idea to sales. His background as a management consultant helps organizations see their challenges from a profit perspective. He currently co-manages a business development company called Practivate which specializes in growing businesses through best-practice consulting interventions as well as managing online content and Brand Activation.
On the occasion of her birthday, March 27th, 2021, Tricia and Olufemi walked down the aisle amid hearty cheers from close friends, family, and colleagues, in a very intimate and beautiful wedding ceremony.
Shortly after their breathtaking, fairytale wedding, Tricia took to her Instagram account to recount the story of how she met her dream man.
According to her:
“Tricia meet Femi, Femi here is Tricia the lady I told you about. I looked up and the first thing I noticed was he had Long lashes, I was muttering under my breathe God why didn’t you give me na, see me fixing false lashes up and down.
I smiled and extended my hand for a handshake I think or did i? The location was a training facility.
Some months before then, I had reached out to my coach @iamsteveharris asking to be his intern. I just needed to understand how to teach what I knew, how to hold a class and make the most of a teaching experience. He graciously agreed. He would give me 24-48 hours notice before every class. My job was to listen, watch, hand out workbooks, sometimes assessment forms etc.
He would always push me to at least talk, me? I wanted to be mute sir. Not on his watch. So this request came like others, we have a bank training can you make it? At the time I was in Benin for my close friends wedding, I was also low on cash but I was gonna show up no matter what. I tried to get my sister to buy a ticket for me back in, no flights. Finally found one, too expensive. Girl is on a budget.
6am bright and early next day, I found my way to the bus park. Money or no money, flight or no flight I would resume on Monday at that training. I was determined to be there.
Back then I thought it was for learning purposes, 3 years later I realized it was because I would meet a fine gentleman with a larger than life heart that would change my world and would later become my husband.”
“I want to pay for 2 seats please. How much is the ticket? I heard someone laugh not far from me, I turned around and they were gossiping about me in loud voices. This one think say she dey airport. Ticket ko ticket ni and both men burst into loud deep throaty laughter. O boy make we dey go.
In my head I was cursing them out but girl gats behave so I turned back to the ticket officer bought the 2 seats and went to sit down waiting for the bus to get full.
I was battling with myself. I hadn’t done a road trip in years, but I don’t have the money na I told myself. Tricia, you can call anyone of your friends and they will send it within 10mins. Erm, I don’t know how to ask for money jor. The bus has TV and Ac so we should be good.
Watching nonsense home video abi? Continue Mrs pride. I continued to argue with myself till the bus was full and ready to go. I climbed in, put my bags beside me as a sort of divider, said a prayer and begun the journey.
Back to the class… Tricia meet Femi, Femi meet Tricia. Steve stood grinning introducing us both. Apparently Femi was a co-trainer in this class and I would observe him at his best. Well that didn’t happen, I was a wreck most of the 3 days training. I was always outside the class crying. I was in a terrible place in life that being alive wasn’t enough joy for me.
Femi noticed I was in and out and everytime I came back I would be sadder than I left. The men in the class tried to cheer me, they just liked fine girl sha and instead of focusing on what the trainer was saying they would be asking when is Tricia going to teach is she not part of the teachers 😃😃😃😀.
O then there was that one guy who passed his number to me. Baba was too sharp for class. Winked his big eyeballs and said call me. Hian! Caller. Ogbeni shift jor.
Femi realized something was UP, so he took permission from Steve to speak to me. By the end of the training he walked up to me, and asked what’s wrong with you? I broke down abd burst into ugly dirty tears.
He let me cry and sat still. He got up and in my head am like see yourself your cry has sent him away.. He came back a min later with a handkerchief or tissue.
He asked the question again when my wails became quiet sobs. Then I opened up. I never open up, I am the one people open up to so I grew up being strong for people. We spoke for 3 hours and half of that I was crying, he would wait till I was done crying and continue the conversation.
He was so patient and kind and sounded like he genuinely wanted to help me. As he got up to leave that evening he said ‘If you ever need to cry call me’
That was the beginning of our friendship. I could tell him anything and there would be no judgment. No worries. He didn’t want anything. His mission the next 6 months was to ensure I was okay. He wasn’t alone, there was an army of friends who were taking turns to ensure I was okay mentally.
Business was thriving.. This was 2018. TriciaBIZ was gaining some grounds so I threw my weight under it. Some days I would scream down the entire house, then curse then wash my face and come on IG LIVE. I was a walking mess but no one needed to know.
We began to do business together. Femi is a darn good business development expert, he loves consulting which I don’t. I just want to teach everyday. So we became partners with consulting. Our first gig together was a restructuring job for @thebabylounge. We would go on to do loads more together.
Some months later on one fateful day Itoro asked me, Tricia is Olumide single? He is such as decent young man. You both will be perfect. Haaaa!!!! That triggered questions and changed how I saw him.. Shey this young man will not ask me out like this? Is it friendship and money we will be doing alone? O wait you already scared him away with your 1million issues 😀😀. I thought.
I dialed Steve, Coach ‘Help me find out if Femi likes me as friend only or there is something there’. Man like Steve he replied I gat this, I will report back tomorrow with updates let me call him right away what’s wrong with this Bobo sef is he blind?
I struggle to sleep most times, but you see that night sleep forgot my address. I was wide-eyed tossing from one end of the bed to another. Has Steve called? What did he say? Tough girl tough girl see your life in private. Choi!
8am, I sent a whatsapp message how far? I think Steve was hugging his phone cos his response came in 42secs ish!. Was a screenshot of their chat. Man like Steve!!!. I downloaded the image and opened it. The content hit me like a wild Tsunami devouring an old village.
In a blink I had headache + cold + numbness.
I felt ugly
Then I felt abandoned
Then I felt alone
Wait why was I feeling all of this? Summary of his response was, Tricia is not emotionally ready for any relationship she needs to heal so am just her friend.
Tough girl Tricia replied, I don’t even want to date him sef jor. 😒 Steve always knew when I was bullshitting – a coaching trait I picked from him. He replied, but we both know you like each other. That boy is blind and you are too stubborn. Let me get to work.
And work he did. Over the next 3 months he would go back and forth between the both of us. Snitching on Femi to me, I think he did same to Femi. He would update me on everything lol. I had the I don’t care attitude but inside baby girl be smiling hard. Coughs* All his back and forth worked because
One fateful day months later, Bobo stood in my apartment and asked me out straight up Will you be my girlfriend Tricia? Haaaa!!! I wanted this but I thought it will come with some accompanying romantic things as the friend of Cupid + Eros + Mercury + Venus (Greek love beings) that I am. I deviate, ehen so I was expecting things like
- Hand written scroll
- Will you be my girlfriend banner
It did not come with anything oo, just a long lashed handsome man staring at me. To say yes or should I think about it? In that moment I imagined Steve giving me brain resetting knock if I said NO.
But I was torn in two.
On one half I would be disappointing members of [ARPW] The Association of Romantic People Worldwide. I have been a card carrying member for 24yrs. Bobo didn’t even see fancy diner to take me to?
On the other half I was imagining Steve driving down to give me factory resetting knock or Sola calling me a BOZO cos that’s her language when I’m naughty.
Common sense won, I said yes. Scratch that, I jumped on him and said finally.
The relationship began, now singing Tricia has a boyfriend.. This should be fun right? Erm nope because there I was constantly picking on all the things he wasn’t doing, and intentionally ignoring what he was doing right.
This continued until I had an out of body encounter that changed everything. This Sunday I sat in church, and the following conversation ensued.
Uncle HS: Go and testify
Tricia: Yes boss.
I then gave one of those broad and vague testimony that you are left wondering what exactly did God do for her?
Then I sat down.
U.H.S – That’s not what I sent you to say. Why aren’t you thankful for all I have done?
Tricia: Emi? Ungrateful ke? Uncle HS if this is a joke stop it oo. Am a grateful child and to show that, I whip out a pen and begin to write all the things God has done for me.
Service was going on, I was in my own world. I was done writing and am like woowwww! God this is a lot oo.
U.H.S – That’s not all I have done for you.
Tricia- Erm excuse Sir, like this my brain has stopped oo nothing else.
U.H.S – I gave you a good man, why don’t you see that. No kidding there were goose bumps on my skin and I wrote God gave me a good man Olufemi Olumide in my book.
Service ended, I hurriedly called Femi as I was about to gist my encounter he mentions, I was praying to God at Xyz time and I told him to tell you something. I burst out laughing am like I got your message loud and clear. It was surreal, like how did the prayer teleport to me immediately?
That encounter changed my disposition for a bit, I began to intentionally see the good until old Tricia came back to mess it ALL UP… Mess up that turned to break UP.”
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