So I’m not sure if you guys are aware but, HD and I have been together for 7 years (as of July 1, 2017). With our new engagement, I felt it’s about time for me to share our entire story from the beginning. I actually met HD for the first time when I was 15 years old. I’ll never forget it, we met at Julian’s Arcade in Queens, New York. I was visiting my then best friend’s family over the summer, and he and I had been pen-pals for quite sometime (yes this was back in the Nokia, snake-game playing days). I remember it so vividly, I couldn’t talk on the phone to boys, AT ALL (Mr. Percy didn’t play!) But somehow, HD and I always managed to keep in touch. As a matter of fact, all of his high school friends referred to me as “Bama.”
What’s funny is, at an early age, before we even started dating, I told HD we would marry someday. Boy, did I speak that into existence. Because we were so young, and HD at the time was “young, dumb, and full of … you know what.” He had no interest in pursuing anything long-distance, and I was just a flirty teen girl looking to see if I had the magic touch to keep his company. Years went by, we lost touch, randomly found each other again on MySpace (lol, remember those days?) … I moved on and was in college in a relationship, he was busy in NYC being a heart-breaker. We were both freshly in college living young, wild, and free. But for some reason, we always reconnected. We would randomly text (Sidekick days), and check in on each other, and then he would fall off of the face of the earth again (this was SO annoying, and I added him to my blocked list a few times because of it lol.)
By this time, I was a sophomore in college, fully developed, and I was feeling myself! I mean conceited on 10! So essentially, I was not here for HD and his shenanigans, and refused to let him enter and vanish out of my life again. Little did I know, he would soon be my saving grace. In 2009, I received one of the most gut wrenching calls of my life, I was working as a server on a super busy game night, and a complete stranger called my work phone to inform my manager that my family’s house was on fire and that I should get home quick. Life as I knew it went from having everything to having nothing within 17 minutes, exactly. That night, after trying to bottle up all of my emotions so that I could be strong for my family I finally had a complete nervous breakdown. I had never seen my family suffer so much all at once. I was completely vulnerable … and within minutes I found myself ringing HD’s line. Keep in mind that I hadn’t spoken to him in 2 years, and swore that I wouldn’t initiate any type of interaction with him unless he reached out first … but he answered and I broke down crying on the phone with him while I was sitting on the curb looking at my burned down house across the street.He could barely hear what I was saying between all of my heavy breathing and waterworks. Shoot, I was actually surprised he even picked up. I would blame fate, but this … was nothing but God and divine timing. He rushed me off the phone after making sure I was okay and a few hours later he called back to tell me he was coming in town to make sure I was okay. Guys, keep in mind that I hadn’t seen him since I was 15 years old, I was 20. We were both broke college students, and we hadn’t communicated with each other in more than 2 years. But that young man came to check on me … and that’s when I knew what I spoke when I was 15 years old was indeed true. He gathered his things, booked a flight and flew to Alabama to check on me. He spent one day in Alabama, just to make sure I was okay.
As deep as that moment was for us, we still drifted apart. We were both really young, and were not ready for anything serious. We valued each other enough to not mess up a good thing. So we remained friends, and checked in every now and then until we agreed to meet up a year later on July 1, 2010. We both drove and met each other half way in Virginia. On that day we mutually decided to try a long distance relationship. We were terrified and both still in college with no clue how things would turn out, but we were determined. It was the best decision either of us had ever made.
For some reason, long distance love came easy for us. We both put in the work, we both communicated, and we both shared distinct interest in maintaining our relationship. We saw each other bi-monthly, sometimes we couldn’t afford it and would go nearly 5 months without seeing each other. We fell asleep with each other on FaceTime, sent thoughtful surprises, and really got to know each other. I think part of the reason HD and I communicate so well is because we were long distance for 4 out of our 7 years together. We had to learn how to talk to each other and how to get creative with our relationship. When I graduated college I headed to New York. I would spend 6 weeks there sleeping on friend’s couches (Hey Amina and Jewell), or if I stayed with him, he took the couch cause neither of our parent’s were about that “shacking” life, and New York’s rent was too damn high. We literally thugged it out together.
What’s crazy is we are both dreamers. Both of us quit our jobs to pursue our dreams, which is unusual. In a relationship there’s typically one dreamer, and the other person holds the fort down with finances while the dreamer grinds. But we were both dreamers who didn’t want to compromise our dreams for comfort or stability so we struggled together. There wasn’t enough income for dating and pursuing our dreams. A date night for us became splurging on White Castle, parking outside of our dream house in our dream neighborhood (praying the neighborhood patrol didn’t catch us) and daydreaming about all of the memories we would create in that house. What’s crazy is, those are some of the best memories I have with him. After grinding hard with HD in New York for years, we are finally seeing our hard work and effort pay off. The grind was real, and still is … but our journey, literally from struggling together to succeeding together has been amazing. HD proposed to me on New Year’s Eve at the stroke of midnight in front of my two childhood best friends and with all of my family on FaceTime. In these 7 years we’ve been through everything together, and although life can be rough at times, it’s beautiful to know that you have someone you can bet your bottom dollar on who always has your best interest at heart. And that’s the story of HD and Triena, on the come up, together …
“Deeper than words … beyond right …”
*Special thank you to Andrea of Andrea Foster Photography … thank you for just getting us and capturing our personality perfectly! You’re work is amazing and we love you!