If anyone knows how to maintain a marriage, it would be those who have survived both the test of time, and Hollywood. We all know marriages spoil like milk and age like dogs in La La Land, but enter one of the most magnificently wedded couples of the last two centuries: Mr. Denzel Washington, and the amazingly stunning Pauletta Washington. The two have quietly celebrated their 39th wedding anniversary this year.
Denzel Washington and wife Pauletta during The 75th Annual Academy Awards.
The actors first met in 1977, on the set of the TV movie Wilma, and began dating shortly afterward. It would be a year before the couple would go on their first date but the rest is Hollywood royalty's history as they wed on June 25, 1983. And although they're pretty private on the daily life of their marriage, they are still happy to discuss minor details, which Denzel did so on Live! With Kelly and Ryan. On how they met:
"I met her then, but I didn't meet her then. I saw her then."
An entire year later, Denzel went on to explain, he was at a party where Pauletta also happened to be.
"I had talked at that party about going to see a play. I went to see the play, and at intermission the lights came up and she was sitting [there]. She said she just happened to go see the play."
A story Pauletta similarly tells to Oprah in 1996. She then adds:
"I thought he was cute but I fell in love with his spirit really. That I saw first, and then I thought, 'Hmmm not a bad package.'"
(L-R) Malcolm Washington, Katia Washington, Pauletta Washington, and Denzel Washington attend the 47th AFI Life Achievement Award honoring Denzel Washington.
Michael Kovac/Getty Images for AFI
The two now have four children: twins, Malcolm and Olivia Washington, Katia Washington, and another actor in the family that is breaking out the mold on his own, John David Washington. In fact, John David is the only one in the public eye, as the others opt for a more lowkey lifestyle. John David even famously checked a reporter who didn't give his mama her flowers ASAP when setting up the question. He began, "being the son of Denzel Washington--" and John David immediately cut the reporter off:
"--and Pauletta Washington. Who was earning more money than he was before they got married. She was on Broadway working, paid for the first date, she paid the bill, paid the cab ride, classically trained pianist, went to Juliard. You know, she's a great artist in her own right. And I learned a lot from her. My father taught me how to hunt, my mother taught me how to love."
Kevin Winter/Getty Images
And the man of the family hands out the same bouquet to his queen every chance he gets, once telling PEOPLE his favorite things about his wife:
"Security, food, a beautiful home … the difference between a house and a home, it's a big difference. You can buy a house, but that doesn't make it a home — and not to say a man can't make a home a home, but my wife has made our house a home, and raised these beautiful kids, and protected them and sacrificed for them … she did the heavy lifting."
This is energy, men. This is energy.
And ladies we got some for you too.
Donna Ward/Getty Images
Pauletta once shared the key to their happiness, by simply addressing the importance of standing true with a powerful man. She told The Root:
"Any woman behind an influential man has always been there. Maybe the public, and the media, is now saying we recognize you, but take it from me, I've been on the scene a long time."
Watch an old school clip of the two bragging on each other below:
Happy anniversary, you two!
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Featured image via Donna Ward/Getty Images
This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
There’s nothing quite as humbling as navigating adulthood with no instruction manual. Since the turn of the decade, it seems like everything in our society that could go wrong has, inevitably, gone wrong. From the global pandemic, our crippling student debt problem, the loneliness crisis, layoffs, global warming, recession, and not to mention figuring out what to eat for dinner every night. This constant state of uncertainty has many of us wondering, when are the grown-ups coming to fix all of this?
But the catch is, we are the new grown-ups.
As if it happened without our permission, we became the new adults. We are the members of society who are paying taxes, having children, getting married, and keeping our communities afloat, one iced latte at a time. Still, there’s something about doing all these grown-up duties that feel unnaturally grown-up. Enter the #teenagegirlinher20s.
If there’s one hashtag to give you the state of the next cohort of adults, it’s this one. Of the videos that have garnered over 3.9M views, you’ll find a collection of users who are overwhelmed by life’s pressing existential responsibilities, clung to nostalgia, and reminiscent of the days when their mom and dad took care of their insurance plans.
no like i cant explain to her why i had to buy multiple tank air dupes from aritzia #teenagegirlinher20s #fyp
The concept of being a 20-something or 30-something teenager is linked to the sentiment of not feeling “grown up enough” to do grown-up things while feeling underprepared and even nihilistic about whether that preparation even matters.
It’s our generation’s version of when we ask our grandmothers how old they are and they simply reply with, “I still feel 45,” all while being every bit of 76 years old. In this, we share a warped concept of time while clinging to a desire for infantilization.
Granted, the pandemic did a number on our concept of time. Many of us who started the pandemic in our early or mid-20s missed out on three fundamental years of socialization, career development, and personal milestones that traditionally help to mark our growth.
Our time to figure out and plan our next steps through fumbling yet active participation was put on pause indefinitely and then resumed provisionally. This in turn has left many of us hanging in the balance of uncertainty as we try to make sense of the disconnect between our minds and bodies in this missing gap of time.
Because we’re all still figuring out what the ramifications of being locked away and frozen in time by a global pandemic will have on us as a society, there really is no “right” way of making up for lost time. Feeling unprepared for any new chapter of life is a natural rite of passage, pandemic or not. However, it’s important to not stay stuck in the last age or period of life that made sense to us because self-growth is the truest evidence of personal progress.
So whether you’re leaning on your inner child, teenager, or 20-something for guidance as you fill the gap between your real age and pandemic age, know that it’s okay to grieve the person you thought you would be and the milestones you thought you’d hit before you ever knew what a pandemic was. If there’s anything that the pandemic taught us, it’s that we have the power to reimagine a better world and life for ourselves. And if we tap into our inner teenager as a compass, we can piece together our next chapter with a fresh outlook.
Sure, we’ve lost a couple of years, but there are still some really amazing ones ahead.
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