Why One Young Couple Lived Together For A Year Before Their Marriage
It was love at first sight for two freshmen at the University of Maryland, College Park.
After meeting their very first week on campus, Kevin decided it was time to make Brittany his lady just two months later. But while the connection seemed quick, it took some time for the two to finally grow into one another before Kevin thought it best to make Brittany his wife.
Seven years of dating and a Master's degree under Brittany's belt later, Brittany moved to New York to be closer to her man. After eight months of living together, Kevin popped the question.
Brittany and Kevin will be on their way to Montego, Jamaica to wed in 2017. In the meantime, read just why Kevin asked and why Brittany said 'yes.'
On Why They Lived Together Before Becoming Engaged
Kevin: Over the seven-and-a-half years that we have been dating I have come to learn that Brittany is truly a ride or die type of woman, and she always puts God and family above all else. That trait is very hard to come by and I felt lucky to be with someone that will always be there for me. That selflessness has made me into a better person. She is also highly intelligent and is not afraid to debate on topics that she is passionate about, which can make for interesting dinners. Personally, I felt it was crucial that we lived together for a year first to ensure that we can co-exist in the same home. We learned so much about each other that you wouldn't know otherwise! At the moment when you feel truly blessed to be with the one you love it is time to start looking towards the future!
How He Caught Her Eye (And Her Heart)
Brittany: The first thing that attracted me to Kevin was his assertiveness. We both noticed each other at the Freshman mixer but he took the initiative to approach me and strike up a conversation, which I was impressed with. As we got to know each other over the first few months, I realized how caring and genuine he is, which is something that I truly appreciate years later. He is always looking out for my wellbeing and making sure that I am happy, sometimes even over his own happiness. I feel very safe and secure when I'm with him and I'm confident in his ability to lead us and our future family.
As a young black woman who is very independent, it's very reassuring to have a partner that you respect and trust to make the best decisions for you and your relationship.
Another trait that I admire about Kev is his adventurous nature. Sometimes he goes overboard, like jumping off cliffs on vacation [side eye], but I can honestly say that he does motivate me to step outside of my comfort zone and be more fearless.
When It Was Time To Discuss Marriage...
Brittany: We always talked about marriage as a goal eventually, but I didn't get serious about it until I finished grad school. When we decided we would move in together. I set real expectations that I didn't want to be a girlfriend forever, but I also didn't want him to feel pressured. I wanted him to feel 100% ready because this is a serious commitment that we both needed to be prepared for.
[Tweet "I set real expectations that I didn't want to be a girlfriend forever "]
Kevin: We talked about it over the years. I think it's a natural progression of a relationship to talk about your future, which for me included marriage. I knew that once we moved in that within a year I was going to be ready to make that big step!
How She Balanced Her Career With A Long-Distance Relationship
Brittany: Honestly, it was easy to balance when you have a partner who encourages you to go after your dreams. We have both been each other's biggest advocates when it comes to motivating each other to be our very best. Kevin was very understanding when I had to make time to study and make time for friends at school. My education has always been my number onr priority and something that my parent instilled in me from a young age. I just had to have faith that if Kevin and I were meant to be, it would work out in the end (and it did!)
Being in a long-distance relationship over the years did have its challenges, but we made sure to set weekends apart to visit each other and made the most out of the times we spent together. We had the opportunity to explore two different cities (Philadelphia and NYC), which made our dates even more fun. We would use FaceTime every night and text to check-in throughout the day to helped us stay connected. We both realized that this was a temporary sacrifice to pursue and build our careers to eventually begin building our long-term future together.
How He Got the Family Involved
Kevin: Generally, I like to think about things from a long term perspective. Months before I knew that her family was traveling from Maryland to New York to visit family that was in the Bronx. It just so happened to be the same week that my family flew my grandparents up from Florida to surprise my grandma with a birthday party, which had all of her family and friends. I knew this was my time to strike!
Knowing the time frame all I had to do was plan something I felt was worthy enough to demonstrate my love. I told her family and my family that I wanted to have a brunch for Britt's birthday which was a few days before. I also called her best friends from Maryland and told them they need to make this brunch. Overall, I think that it worked out with over 50 of our family and friends able to attend. I takes a village to cultivate a relationship so I felt it important to have them invoked if possible.
Popping the Big Question
Kevin: I can admit now that I was slightly nervous. I wasn't nervous about actually proposing, but more so nervous that my plan, which took sometime to plan was going to be executed with precision.
The day started off with us waking up early and having to first visit her family in the Bronx. Her parents and grandparents traveled that same day from Maryland to visit Britt's great uncle who just had a knee replacement surgery. We make it to the Bronx at around 11am. It was great seeing her family, but that was not my main mission of the day.While we were mingling with her family, I was texting my brother and one of my friends throughout the morning to ensure that the brunch location was set! Britt loves to be around family, needless to say it was a challenge to pry her away from them so that we could make it to the brunch location on time. We ended up taking an Uber Executive and finally arrived to the pier around 1pm. Previously, I told Britt that my brother wanted to take some photos for his website and he wanted to involve us. Given that she was dressed, hair done, nails done, perfect!
Upon meeting my brother and his now fiancée at the pier, we began taking photos, partially to stall as people were arriving late of course and so that I can start thinking about the moment to come. We started to walk down the pier towards the brunch location. My brother and his fiancée started to fade to the back as Britt and I walked up. Now at this very moment in my head I thought well it's time--man up! Finally it was just me and her. I had her face the west side overlooking the water and New Jersey. I got on one knee and expressed how much she truly meant to my life and that I wanted her forever. Once the ring came out, she was shocked! I then had her turn around and about 50 yards away were 50 of our closest family and friends! Her reaction made it all worth it!
Planning their destination wedding to Jamaica
Brittany: Since both of our families are from Jamaica getting married there was kind of a no-brainer for us. Since he planned the engagement, he jokes that I am responsible for the wedding, but he will definitely be helping me to make the decisions. We want an outside wedding with either a waterfall or beach backdrop. Overall, we just want it to be one big party with friends and family. Like Kevin mentioned, we are super family-oriented so my biggest wish is that all of our friends and family will be there to help us celebrate our union.
Kevin: I think that I am most looking forward to being in the presence of family and friends. I want our wedding to not only to solidify the union between Britt and me but also solidify the union of the village of family and friends that helped to cultivate our relationship.
Do you have a love story or proposal story that you would like to share? Contact us at email@example.com, Subject ‘Proposal Story.’ Include photos and video (if possible)!
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.
The Fall Equinox begins on September 23, 2023, and it’s time to embrace abundance, gain clarity, and know that you are worthy of your desires. The Fall Equinox marks the beginning of fall and the end of summer and is a turning point of the year, where things settle in and come to fruition. The energy that fall brings is one of harvest, but it is also one of release, letting go, and finding your ground. Coming from a summer of intensity, drama in love, and overall moving through a space of deep spiritual growth- now that fall is here, we are ready to decompress, dream, and enjoy that which we have created for ourselves.
What Is the Energy of the Fall Equinox 2023?
The energy this fall is opening up new doors of abundance and is a time of reaping your rewards in life. Fall begins at the same time as Libra Season, and a lot of these blessings have to do with love and the relationship developments that will be taking place over the next few months. With a New Moon Solar Eclipse in Libra occurring a few weeks after fall begins on October 14th, something enchanting is happening in romance right now. The scales are coming into balance, new beginnings are occurring, and clarity prevails.
Relationships over the next few months are about focusing on the gifts and gratitude you find in them and accepting where things need to change as well.
By the time winter begins, most of the planets that are currently in retrograde will be direct, and this signifies the change of pace that fall is bringing. This fall highlights Eclipse Season overall, and the Full Moon Lunar Eclipse in Taurus on October 28th will be a time of creating boundaries, honoring your values and energy, and closing a chapter in your life that doesn’t align. Financial worlds are growing and finding new ground, but with Jupiter still in retrograde in Taurus until December 30th, patience is needed here.
Over the next few months, give yourself the space to gain some new perspectives, make room for love, and grow in abundance.
Your guidance this fall is to take those first steps toward the goals you have been pondering over this year. There is a Full Moon in your sign a week after fall begins, and you get the opportunity to enter this season with less baggage and more closure. You will possibly be starting a new position or working in a new field, and you need all the good energy to back you right now. Know that you can count on your skills and talents to move you further in life and that help will be there when you least expect it. This is a fall of abundance for you, Aries, claim it.
Your lucky days this fall are: Sep. 29, Oct. 13, Nov. 13, Nov. 21
Patience, patience, patience, Taurus. You are creating something beautiful in the world right now, and the time it’s taken to get you here will all be worthwhile. Your guidance this fall is to nurture your world and your dreams and to bring more love and compassion to your life. You are preparing for a new reality but need some more time to dream it up and define that which you want for yourself and your future. The Full Lunar Eclipse happening this fall is occurring in your sign, and you are moving through some major closures in your life right now. This is a creative time for you, Taurus.
Your lucky days this fall are: Oct. 28, Oct. 29, Nov. 6, Nov. 20
This fall is all about taking care of yourself and valuing your time and energy, Gemini. The way you see yourself and your life are coming up for review right now, and you are being urged to look at yourself in a better light. Your ruling planet, Mercury, goes retrograde for the last time this year on December 13th, just before fall ends, and this time is all about taking what you have learned and choosing better for yourself. You may be tested to be more confident or true to yourself right now and over the next few months, and it’s about owning your part in this life and standing up for what you want.
Your lucky days this fall are: Sep. 25, Oct. 21, Nov. 20, Dec. 12
This is an abundant fall for you, Cancer. You have worked diligently on claiming the opportunities and new doors that have been opening for you, and you are feeling free to be your successful self. You are encouraged in your independence right now, and you have proven to yourself just how talented you are and how much you have grown. No major aspects are happening in your sign this fall, giving you the space to breathe, create, and receive your rewards. Happiness fills your world, and even though you still feel like you are just getting started in a sense, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the gifts that are presenting themselves today.
Your lucky days this fall are: Oct. 13, Oct. 15, Nov. 12, Nov. 13
This fall is a turning point for you in love, Leo. New developments are taking place in your relationships, and you are being received especially favorably. This is the time to open your heart to growth and new possibilities and to get creative with what you are looking for right now. The Last Quarter Moon happening in your sign on November 5th will be a turning point for you this fall. Your unique charm and charisma are enough, and you attract many to you through your natural energy and love for life. Your ship is coming in this fall, and your heart is fulfilled.
Your lucky days this fall are: Oct. 1, Oct. 31, Nov. 5, Nov. 14
Virgo, this fall is a blessing for the heart space. You are feeling in tune emotionally, and there is positive energy coming your way and into your love life. You have spent a lot of this year healing, forgiving, and finding your voice, and over the next few months, you will be creating the spaces you have been looking to enter in your life. Venus enters your sign for a month on October 8th, and there are some pleasant surprises in store for you during this time. Fresh starts are coming in for you, and spiritually, you are awakening to the gifts within you and in your heart. Your beauty is showing, and love is coming in for you this fall.
Your lucky days this fall are: Sep. 25, Oct. 22, Nov. 5, Nov. 20
This fall is a new beginning for your financial world, Libra. Autumn begins the same day Libra Season does, and you have some extra motivation and energy within you right now. You are ready to put the action behind the intentions you have been setting for yourself financially, and this is a time of plans coming together and falling through to success. The more you stay focused and diligent, the more opportunities that can come for you right now. The first month of fall, the Sun is in your sign, and this is really the time to get things moving in your life, especially with a New Moon Eclipse in Libra on October 14th happening as well.
Your lucky days this fall are: Sep. 27, Oct. 14, Oct. 30, Nov. 20
It’s all about the vision for you right now, Scorpio. You are focused on the future, your path ahead, and manifesting your dreams, and there is something passionate about the next few months for you. You may be taking some risks this fall as you test the boundaries on how far you want to go with something and what worlds are opening up to you now. Mars is in your sign from October 12th until November 24th, and life is exciting for you right now. You have your eyes on the prize and are ready to move forward toward the things that are lighting you up right now.
Your lucky days this fall are: Oct. 12, Oct. 13, Nov. 6, Nov. 13,
This fall is about taking a leap of faith, Sagittarius. Your guidance over the next few months is to do the things that you would do if you knew you would be supported in doing them. Less self-doubt is needed now, as you are walking on new ground. You are moving towards personal healing you have been wary of from the beginning, and you are ready to let go of some energy that has been holding you back. Trust that once you decide on something, the universe instantly begins to make it happen for you. Your season begins on November 22nd, and it’s time to put yourself first more. Have courage in yourself this fall.
Your lucky days this fall are: Oct. 8, Nov. 22, Nov. 24, Dec. 12
This fall is all about clarity for you, Capricorn. You are a wise soul, and you are owning this energy about yourself right now. Over the next few months, you will be developing spiritually, helping those who need your sound advice, and evolving in life. You have found a new sense of enlightenment and are enjoying the clear perspective that has been gained. Mercury goes retrograde in your sign on December 13th, right before fall ends, and this is when you will be feeling more tested to take the lead in your life and use your voice. Overall, fall 2023 is your time to surrender to the good within you and in your life, Capricorn.
Your lucky days this fall are: Oct. 10, Oct. 23, Nov. 4, Dec. 1
Things are moving fast for you this fall, Aquarius. This is a successful, harmonious, and passionate time for you, as many opportunities come your way at once. It will be hard to settle down with all the energy flowing through your life over the next few months, as you have so much to do and so many people to see. Overall, however, this is positive energy that you have been looking forward to in your life, and everything is coming together and moving forward where it was once stagnant. Fall is giving you the closure and the opportunity to reinvent yourself and start on new, solid ground in your life.
Your lucky days this fall are: Oct. 30, Oct. 31, Nov. 20, Nov. 28
Your guidance for fall is to have balance in your life. There is a lot of new coming in for you, but you are also working on letting go of what has fallen. You have grown in many ways this year, and financially, you have seen growth as well but may be feeling the weight of responsibilities this has come with now. To move through this season with the most grace, give yourself more time to rest, to be, and allow things to fall into place on their own. Saturn has been retrograde in your sign since June and goes direct this fall on November 4th, Pisces. This is your opportunity to see things more clearly, protect your energy, and feel more in tune with your internal guidance system.
Your lucky days this fall are: Oct. 22, Nov. 4, Nov. 6, Dec. 12
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