What is love? Nydian and Anthony
“There is an assumption you will find the perfect person. They don't exist. It is an illusion. Accept you will marry a person with faults and you won’t be disappointed.”
Nydian and Anthony live in Charlotte, North Carolina, with their three children. They have been together for eighteen years. Nydian was born in Puerto Rico and moved to South Carolina when she was four years old. Anthony was born in Georgia and raised in South Carolina. They met at High School; where they were in the same chorus. Anthony was a senior, and Nydian was a freshman. They didn’t know each other, but Nydian had a crush on him. Three years later Nydian bumped into him in their local library and after decided to write him a letter. Nydian recalled her first impressions "I am a very spiritual person, when I saw him in high school, I felt like I knew him, and I felt that I would be with him. Sometimes crushes are just physical, this was more. I didn’t actually know that we would end up together and so I was really surprised when I saw him again at the library. That’s why I knew I had to write a letter. I picked up on what type of person he was."
I couldn’t wait to speak to Nydian and Anthony about what makes a successful relationship and see what love means to them.
Nydian sent the letter to his house after finding his address through the phone book. They were nineteen and twenty-two at the time. Anthony said, “I opened the letter, and I was flattered. She had grown into a beautiful young woman. I called her, and we were going to go out, but I canceled at the last minute.”
One more year passed, and Anthony found her on AOL messenger. He asked her out, she turned him down, she was dating somebody else. A few months later he asked her out again, this time she was single and so, after all those years, they finally made it on their first date.
Anthony recalls, "We had never really spoken in person before. We went to Chili’s restaurant. The moment I saw her, I was blown away by how beautiful she was."
They were engaged four years later in 2005 while Nydian was finishing her master's degree. Their relationship had survived college. A year later, they were married. They had a small ceremony in Columbia, South Carolina in November 2006, and then in December, they flew to Puerto Rico to have a wedding ceremony there with Nydian's family.
The decision to marry was easy. Anthony said, "we always had a good time together. Even if we fought, we got over it quickly. She is very compassionate and has a great heart towards anyone and everyone.”
Nydian commented, "We do everything together. He is my best friend. He is the first person I tell anything to. We are exact opposites, he is my compliment. He is relaxed, I am a worrier. I have to be with someone that balances me.”
Emmaleen: Can you tell us a loving story from your relationship?
Nydian: “We became engaged in Savannah, Georgia. I didn’t know he was going to propose. We headed there to celebrate our fourth anniversary of dating. We were strolling around the town, and I had bought tickets for us to go on a horse and carriage ride with champagne, It was going to be a surprise for him, but he had been acting strange, and so I thought 'well this is going to be an interesting night.' At the end of the carriage ride, he proposed and people congratulated us. I then understood why he was acting funny.”
Anthony: “It’s not a story as such, but no matter what we do, we always find a way to have fun and laugh. Even if it’s just going to the grocery store.”
What is the key to a happy relationship?
Anthony: “Hearing each other out. Patience and forgiving. When we figured out that, our relationship got stronger. There is another way; it’s just not what you learned growing up sometimes. Be open-minded.”
Nydian: “Having the desire to keep building something together. It can be easy to give up.”
What is Love?
Nydian: “Learning to be vulnerable and forgive the other person. You can’t love if you are not willing to let your guard down. Look at your faults so you can love better."
Anthony: “Unconditionally loving so much and prioritizing the other person. Putting their needs before yours."
So what is their advice to anyone looking for love?
Nydian: “Be patient. Let things build. We, as a society, are fast-paced, we want things the way we want it. There is an assumption you will find the perfect person. They don’t exist. It is an illusion. Be patient. Accept that you will marry a person with faults and you won’t be disappointed.”
Anthony: “Be adventurous and let your guard down. There are situations where people miss out through fear of rejection or hurt. Put yourself out there. If Nydian didn’t send me the letter, this could never of happened.”
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