As I stood on the corner of my block, a brisk gust of winter’s leftovers rudely interrupted my delightful daydream involving sunshine and feathers, reminding me that I was back in the frozen tundra of New York City. I mean seriously, will Winter ever go home? She’s like that drunk friend at the end of the party that refuses to leave even though the lights are on, the DJ is packing up and people are sweeping up trash. Shivering in my puffy coat I scowled at Mother Nature’s antics, and said a silent prayer of thanks for having a ride to church that morning.
My former roommate LaToyia and her fianceé Kevin soon pulled up, and I happily hopped into the backseat, thanking them for the ride and began my usual chat with Toyia about our latest natural hair adventures. As her roommate I had been privileged to have a front row seat to the romantic comedy that characterized their 6 year relationship. It was a breath of fresh air in pop culture’s relationship theater that consistently features poorly scripted suspenses, thrillers, and dramas that inevitably end up as box office failures. Like that action film your crazy girlfriend always stars in that involves stakeouts, password theft and CSI investigations that inevitably end in an epic wallslide into the relationship basement of takeout binges, ice cream and a snotty Kleenex trail all over your living room floor.
Toyia and Kevin’s relationship has been more like that long movie you don’t realize was long because you enjoy it so much. Like Forrest Gump. They’ve been running together, literally, for years in a steady journey grounded in faith, love and a mutual passion for nutrition and fitness. Their friendship began at Bally’s Fitness in Brooklyn (Sidebar: Bally’s get it together! Seriously. I bet Rikers has better equipment! Hire a handyman! Clean up your act or stop calling yourself a Sports Club! #endrant) and over the past few years their strength training that began as a physical exercise blossomed into an emotional and spiritual test of endurance.
As I rode through Brooklyn in the backseat of Kevin’s car, I was excited about heading to Florida for their upcoming wedding, asking question after question about the details. I told Toyia I had finally received their vintage inspired wedding invitation and was going on and on about how awesome it was when Kevin, who is normally fairly quiet during our ride, chimed in, “Of course they’re awesome. She’s awesome.”
The way he looked over at her in the passenger seat reminded me of the way Barack looks at Michelle (yes we are on a first-name basis, don’t hate). Kevin had a peaceful contentment about him like he had discovered a gold mine in his backyard and was 200% ready to commit to maintenance and protection of his new treasure.
This weekend they will finish the first lap in a lifelong relay at their wedding in Panama City, Florida. I am beyond excited to attend the premiere of Mr. and Mrs. Kevin Mathieu and will be documenting their union as evidence, despite repeated beatings by the media, that Black love is not dead.