In xoNecole's Our First Year series, we take an in-depth look at love and relationships between couples with an emphasis on what their first year of marriage was like.
When it comes to finding your life partner, the best time to find love is when you least expect it. You can either question how the universe has brought you two together or take it and run with it. For married couple Ray and Roslyn Singleton, they have been running with it since the day they met. The two fell in love with each other at first sight while attending a local all-black party.
Conversation and food after would ensue and tell the pair all they needed to know about each other and all of it began and ended with love. "Ros was so different from any girl I have ever met before in my life. She was gorgeous, she had a short haircut, tatted up, and it was just something about her," Ray recalled for xoNecole. "After talking with her and realizing getting to know her would be more of a challenge, I just fell in love with her. There is nothing more beyond that."
Even with a seven-year age difference, Ray and Roslyn vibed so well with each other, that there was no denying it. "The day after we met, I blocked everyone else I was talking to. I was good. I have only known him for eight hours, but I'm good. This is it," Roslyn recalled. Who knew that one evening at a local party would just so happen to be the right place at the right time for the both of them? Together, they have been figuring out this thing called life ever since.
For this installment of xoNecole's Our First Year, learn more about Ray and Roslyn Singleton, a couple who have worked together towards a successful marriage by going with the flow and letting love lead the way.
Roslyn: We met in November 2016 and Ray proposed May 6th the following year. But I knew immediately that I wanted to marry Ray. The day after we met, I blocked everyone else I was talking to. I was good. I have only known him for eight hours, but I'm good. This is it. I'm not going to say that we haven't had our bumps in the road like every couple does, but we found our way to get through. Ray was different. He was the youngest man I have ever considered dating, let alone marry. Having that transition to dating someone that's seven years younger, I learned he was such an old soul. He loved God, his family, and I could tell he cared about me from day one. I also like to say sarcastic jokes and he throws them back at me. So the comedy between us makes me love him even more.
Ray: From the very beginning, we just clicked. I moved into her apartment four days after we met. But I think ultimately it was the amount of time we could laugh together. Whatever the time of day it was, it didn't matter because it was just her and I. I think that's how we clicked so fast. We feel like we have been together 15 or more years. She was that other part of my soul that I was able to find.
"I knew immediately that I wanted to marry Ray. The day after we met, I blocked everyone else I was talking to. I was good. I have only known him for eight hours, but I'm good. This is it. I'm not going to say that we haven't had our bumps in the road like every couple does, but we found our way to get through. Ray was different."
Tying The Knot
Roslyn: One thing I remember about our wedding day is, when I turned the corner at the venue and I first saw Ray, he looked so good. He was crying and that was just a key moment for me. I also remember the very end of the wedding. It was nothing extravagant. We both got into Ray's car, we packed up all the food, went back to our hotel, and had burgers and chicken wings for our wedding night. It was literally the best, most chill thing ever.
Ray: I remember 15 minutes before the ceremony was about to start, it was pouring down raining. It was hot and chaotic. My dad pulled me to the side and asked if I was ready. I said, "Yep." And when I saw her, I knew. It was one of the greatest things in my life.
Ray: My biggest fear walking into marriage was having the concern of what does the rest of my life look like. I understand how serious marriage is and the idea of marriage. It was just the fear of the unknown. It was never about if I was going to be in love with her for the rest of my life, that was unquestionable. But the more time I spent with her and thought about her, I knew our connection wasn't something that I could break. Staying in the moment allowed me to let go of that fear.
Roslyn: I would say my biggest fear was trying to live up to something instead of making marriage my own. I come from an upbringing where my parents had been married for 30+ years. I always had this image of what marriage looked like from my parents. So for me, I never wanted to fail him as a wife or fail as the example of what marriage should be. From what they showed me, I try to give that to Ray. What I learned to get through that is to communicate better to Ray and tell him how much I appreciate him a lot.
"My biggest fear walking into marriage was having the concern of what does the rest of my life look like. I understand how serious marriage is and the idea of marriage. It was just the fear of the unknown. It was never about if I was going to be in love with her for the rest of my life, that was unquestionable."
Ray: Communication. We didn't know how to talk to each other. We didn't know how to talk about problems, our feelings, or how if someone said something how the other person received it. Honestly, there would be times where we were not foolin' with each other. One thing I had to unlearn is not communicating my expectations to her. I had this idea of what a husband and wife should be and assumed everyone thought the same way I did. But it was nothing but the love we had for each other that kept us coming back. So even though we are light years from where we started, communication is something we are still working on till this day.
Roslyn: You know when you have that conversation and you're like, "GIRL, LISTEN." I have been there. Luckily, I have those friends that talked me off the ledge and encouraged me to just have a conversation with him. Ray is an amazing person and he brought his life experiences into the relationship just like I did. So I had to unlearn not to nitpick at those differences to Ray. I had to be aware of when I may do those things and apologize. I never want to be someone that points out his flaws because I genuinely want to be supportive to him.
Ray: I can love harder than I thought I could. Before Ros, I was independent and knew how to focus on myself. Now I know that it's possible that you could love so much when being involved with someone else. As a guy, you hear about it. But you're not really thinking about it because you're living your life.
Roslyn: The most important lesson for me is being appreciative of the love I've received from Ray. Even when I had brain surgery, it made me more appreciative because I know women who have had a similar situation as me and their husbands left them. It really blows my mind because my mother had a ton of health issues and my dad was right there for her. So when my health stuff came around, I didn't second-guess what Ray's role was in my life, because that was what I knew. But now understanding that that type of support is not what a lot of people get.
"I can love harder than I thought I could. Before Ros, I was independent and knew how to focus on myself. Now I know that it's possible that you could love so much when being involved with someone else."
Roslyn: I have my sister/best friend and I talk to her because she was married for over 10 years. I know she will give me an unbiased opinion about marriage that is in the best interest of Ray and I. I know she can give me that marriage perspective and understand things better that I may be missing. I also have my other best friend who is single. She is a more philosophical thinker. So she expounds and looks at every possible angle to give me great advice. Both of them are very transparent and they remind me that marrying Ray is what I wanted to do. So I have to figure it out.
Ray: None of my friends are qualified to give me advice (laughs). I talk to my pastor and God a lot. It is a lot of introspective work that I do for understanding. I truly do self-reflection and try to put myself in her shoes when we are dealing with an issue. When I do talk to my friends, they talk me off the ledge too. But for advice, it's mainly my pastor.
The Best Advice
Ray: Listen to advice from others, but you have to live with her every day. You can take advice from all these gurus and stuff. But at the end of the day, you have to live with her. So figure it out. Also work together as a team. Fellas, use the word "we" and understand that you two are a unit.
Roslyn: The best advice I've gotten was from my dad. He told me that problems are going to happen. There is nothing you can do about it, you just have to talk about it. It is important to remember that everyone is their own individual person and on the road, you have to learn to love the parts of a person that you don't understand. Even on days that you may not not like that person, in the long run, you are going to love everything about that person. It's worth it.
For more of Ray and Roslyn, follow them on Instagram @willie_qool and @iamrosroyal. Also check out their new clothing line that commemorates their marriage here.
Featured image via Ray Singleton/Instagram