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Saturday, 10 August 2013
A Touching Story From A Couple Whose Wedding Photo Went Viral
Now who says love is not for everybody? Everyone is capable of loving and being loved, all you have to do is open your heart and be positive. Don't ever think that you are not beautiful enough to find a soul mate, there is a loving partner for everyone if we just believe and wait for the perfect time and also we should know that no love is perfect, rather understanding makes it easier.
Read this wonderful excerpt from a beautiful couple that just celebrated their 6th year anniversary and who decided to share their wedding photo on facebook not knowing that the singular action would go viral, thereby motivating people and inspiring them to be confident.
Nicole+Brandon @ their wedding
BMWK: First, I want to thank you both for sharing your story. We were excited to hear from Nicole. Can you share with us what happened when you posted the wedding picture on Facebook recently? Nicole, you posted it right?
Nicole: Well, Actually, both of us posted it. What do you mean no, no, no? (talking to Brandon in the background) It was our anniversary.
Brandon: (in the background): Let me take the phone.
Nicole: Let me tell you Tiya, one thing about my husband. My husband thinks, he knows it all. He’s going to always have an extended version of my stories.
Brandon: So, okay Tiya are you ready?
BMWK: I’m ready ready, this is going to be the real story huh?
Brandon: Yes, Real Househusbands of Atlanta.
Nicole: Whatever (laughs)
Brandon: So, we were at dinner celebrating our 6 year wedding anniversary and I was looking across the table over a bucket of crab legs just gazing into her eyes and I thought to myself, let me update my Facebook page with a picture of my boo. I said alright I’ll change my background picture. When I did that, didn’t think anything of it. That’s all I did and I showed it to her and said remember this? And she goes “ahhh” while she’s cracking the crab legs and the juice hit me in the eye. So I started crying cause the crab juice hit me in the eye.
Nicole: Stop it! (laughs)
Brandon: By the time we got home that evening we literally had about 700 likes. I said what is going on. She doesn’t know 700 people.
Brandon: I’m like babe this thing is growing. Then it’s like over 1.4k. I’m like what! Before that night was over, the first night, the picture on my page got to about 3,000 likes, the first night. The first 6 hours of the posting.
BMWK: And it was just posted on your personal Facebook page?
Brandon: It was originally only posted on my personal Facebook page. I don’t know if there are any internet cookies associated with that background page that you post. Or if because it’s in the timeline. Maybe it was coincidence that if one person liked it and then liked by a person who made it go viral, either intentionally or unintentionally.
BMWK: Okay, I found that to be so interesting. What were the other sites it was posted to?
Nicole: There were several sites. First, I was taken back by how many people liked the picture. When I looked at other sites, I was then like wow. A lot of people were making comments. Some were nice, like congratulations. Others were more like, he married her despite how she looks. Just a little unsettling, some of them. As if I was unworthy to marry. I would spend nights looking at the comments to see what people were saying.
BMWK: How many comments do you think there were?
Nicole: It was 70 on his personal. On the other sites there were thousands.
BMWK: Did you read them all?
Nicole: Not all of them. I would skim through them and find people we actually knew. That was pretty cool.
Brandon: The comments became a little conversational.
Nicole: Yeah, it did stir up a whole lot.
Brandon: There were comments from across the world. There were some in Arabic, Spanish, Chinese.
BMWK: What was your initial reaction?
Nicole: At first I thought, that’s cool that so many would like my picture. Then once you start reading, the sensitive side was like oh that’s mean. But after a while, I just kind of accepted it. Because I received personal emails from people. One of them from a young lady who actually has Vitiligo and she was basically telling me I was an inspiration because she’s younger, she’s 18. She thought she was doomed to never get married and no one was ever going to love her or like her because of the way she looked. That touched me, because she’s telling me I’m an inspiration to her to let her know she doesn’t have to hide from being who she is and she hopes she can find love, because I found love. That right there was a blessing. If it only touched one person…
BMWK: Then it was worth it.
Brandon: There was one young lady who looked like she was in her early 20s she went to my personal page and copied a different picture, and copied 4 pictures and made a picture collage on her page. She wrote a comment on her page, this is real love and hopefully I’ll find real love like this one day. It touched her family members. They commented “we love you, you’re loved, you’ll be happy”. She was encouraged, but it touched the family members who may have felt like they weren’t showing her love. It was ironic, she opened up through us and got a message to her family.
BMWK: Had you two not had pictures of you together on your Facebook page before?
Brandon: Yeah, that picture is reposted every year and we have a lot of family photos.
Nicole: When I was getting married, my skin was at it’s whitest. I’m not as white as I was then.
Brandon: No where near it.
Nicole: No where near. My Vitiligo was really bad when I was getting married. I mean, I look like I have Vitiligo everyday, but my face is more brown now. It’s noticeable, but not as out there as it was when I was getting married. Maybe that’s the reason. I have no idea what triggered it to go how it went. It was nothing extra about the picture.
Brandon: It’s a beautiful picture.
Nicole: Yes, it’s a beautiful picture.
Brandon: I paid for the pictures, they’re nice!
BMWK: What made you contact us?
Nicole: I was contacted by another site who was interested. I love BMWK. I read the articles all the time and it’s more of an outlet that I want to share a story with if I was going to share a story.
BMWK: Why do you feel it was important to share your story?
Nicole: I feel that, first off I have Vitiligo, it’s not contagious. There’s nothing that’s awful. My husband actually loves me. He didn’t marry me cause I was different or cause…
Brandon: Her father had paper though.
Nicole: Whatever. We had comments like she must be rich. Or he didn’t want to bring home a black woman to his mom. So she’s turning white, so now it’s okay.
Brandon: There was also a brother who said I had the best of both worlds.
BMWK: Are you serious? These were adults right?
Brandon: Early on I thought I had the best of both worlds. Just playing babe. Tiya, I just got a stare down.
BMWK: Be careful now. So, you wanted to share your story so people can know you have it, it’s not contagious…
Nicole: There’s nothing wrong with me. If I can bless someone else to know that you can find love. You are still a person and capable of love. If you have Vitiligo or any other skin pigmentation or anything wrong with you. It does not make you unable to find love.
BMWK: Why do you think people were so curious or reacted the way they did?
Nicole: Anything that’s different makes a stir up. When people don’t know they’re curious. Most people who have Vitiligo cover themselves up with Dermablend or other makeup. I choose not to. I’ve had Vitiligo since I was 5 years old. I have great parents who I contribute that to. They taught me, I’m not my skin, I’m Nicole. My skin doesn’t define who I am. They’ve always been great.
Brandon: Did you just quote a song?
BMWK: Yeah, India Arie.
Nicole: Hey inspiration can come from anywhere. When we were getting married, that was the big taboo. Everyone wanted to know was I going to walk down the isle covered up cause it was my wedding day. My mom asked me, she’s the one who’s always made me feel the most beautiful in the world, she was just curious if I was going to cover it up. It made me second guess it. So I came to Brandon and asked what he thought. Should I? He said, no, un unh. He was real adamant like why would you do that. Brandon doesn’t like makeup. He’s one for natural beauty. When his reaction was like that, it was confirmation. I chose not to (cover it) on my wedding.
BMWK: That beautiful photo is confirmation you made the right choice.
Nicole: Yes ma’am.
Brandon: Oh yeah, she fine! She fine!
BMWK: Okay, now let’s get to the good part. How did you meet?
Nicole: Well, I’m going to tell my version,
BMWK: I was thinking there were going to be two versions.
Brandon: There aren’t two versions, it is one version, my version.
Nicole: You tell the story and I’ll chime in with the good stuff.
Brandon: Coincidently, I was at Morehouse as a freshman the same year she was at Clark Atlanta as a freshman. We never met, never crossed paths. I’m from Connecticut, she’s from Jersey. We moved down here the same year in 95.
Just so you know. My mom introduced me to her high school boyfriend, when I was 14 and he was an older guy and he had Vitiligo. So I was 14 when I was introduced to a person who had the skin disorder. Of course I was a kid, so I asked questions. He explained it was just a skin disorder, and your body stops producing melanin. I learned that and didn’t think of it again because I never saw anyone else who had it. I moved down here 7 years later, we were both taking classes at a community college, here in Atlanta. I came to class on time, she came two weeks late.
BMWK: Two weeks?
Nicole: See, that’s where he exaggerates. It was just a late registration.
Brandon: It’s a pre-calculus class, not an easy class. I sit in the furthest back row with a buddy of mine. There is a chair between us, there are empty chairs everywhere. Class probably occupied 28, there were probably 14 students in the class. Again, back row middle of the classroom, she walks in across the room to teacher who says oh nice of you to join us. Yeah, she stunted across the room, left foot in front of right foot. My buddy and I were already peeping out the females in the the class. I peeped at him and said to him “I got this one”. Remember, half of the room is empty. Teacher said find a seat ANYWHERE. She comes to the back row and sits right next to me.
Nicole: They were the cutest guys in the classroom.
Brandon: She sits to the right of me. I leaned over to the left and said “got her”. I’m an engineer at heart, calculus and pre-calculus came easy to me. She asked me to be her tutor. We both were dating (other people) at that time. She had a boyfriend at the time, I’d see her, some dialogue and a relationship built. Then she noticed my fashion sense. She complemented certain things, like,” I like those shoes”. One day she had the audacity to say “those are some nice shoes I’m thinking of getting my boyfriend some.” I said listen if you want that dude to dress like me and look like me why don’t you just ask to be with me. I thought, she’s probably feeling me. So, we had a take home quiz, and we agreed to take it together. Her boyfriend was dropping her off, he pulls up and asked if we minded taking the test at his barber shop. I said cool. I told my buddy I ‘m doing the lamest thing ever. My friend clowned me. We do the take home quiz, and as I’m leaving, she sits on his lap and thanks me. I walk out with my head down. I said I ain’t no sucker for love. A couple of days later, she’s on a payphone upset and arguing, saying “whatever, I’ll just catch the bus.” She slams the payphone down. I’m like “got her”. I say you need a ride home, I’ll take you home. She said she was fine. I kept bothering her. She agreed I could take her home and the conversation was really good.
Nicole: I had to cut that other one loose,
BMWK: Did you like Brandon before that point?
Nicole: I did. I liked his look when I walked into that classroom. I did have a man though. We studied together, I would watch him play basketball. I would go and watch him sometimes. When you like someone else, everything the other person does makes you mad. It was the straw that broke the camels back when my boyfriend didn’t pick me up that day. After that, we broke up. I didn’t tell Brandon right away that I didn’t have a boyfriend.
BMWK: Why didn’t you tell him right away?
Nicole: He had been trying to take me out on a date. I liked him liking me. It was cute. Brandon is the sweetest. I thought, if I date him, is he going to change. I liked the attention. I could call him and we could sit on the phone for hours. I was putting up a front. After that it was a wrap, not too long after that we dated. We dated for 5 years. Brandon told me a couple of things he wanted to do before he got married, buy a home, get a good job and finish college. He finished all 3 and then asked me to marry him.
BMWK: Brandon, how did you know she was the one?
Brandon: I don’t know if guys go through that “the one” thing. We do become suckers for love though. We do succumb to the writing on the wall. We feel the same way, but I never had that sense of she’s the one. I had confirmation throughout our relationship. My mom and Nikki are Scorpios. My sister loved her. My friends all like her personality and her approach to womanhood and being an individual. And her positive outlook on things. How strong of a person she is. They all know that Vitiligo is something some people just can’t deal with. The stares from adults out in public, the questions and comments from kids not knowing any better. We’ve traveled to the East and West Coast, Islands, people from all walks of life can walk right by her and not think twice about her skin. Then, there are people right here in the hood, in the city, show they have no couth, the pointing and the staring. It’s sometimes uncomfortable for me. But she just swings her hair and keeps walking. She leads a great life, and walks a good walk and is a great mom. She is “the one” so I did choose right. She’s cool people.
BMWK: Brandon, real quick, what happened with the relationship you were in. (Brandon pretends not to hear me).
Nicole: I captivated his heart!
BMWK: What do you both want us to know about you and your love story?
Brandon: Love is not perfect, love has no boundaries. Love forgives and love is real! I think my wife is going to be all over me tonight.
Nicole: He doesn’t hold his tongue. My story was basically just because you’re different doesn’tmean you can’t have a happily ever after. I hope and pray my confidence shines through my 3 little girls. Yes, they know mommy looks different but mommy held her head high and she walked tall and beautiful. So, I hope that it reflects on them as well.
BMWK: Thank you both so much. It was a pleasure speaking with both of you. This is the most fun I’ve had on an interview. Your story will definitely inspire our readers.