Love stories of TT

ALL you need is love, or so the Beatles say. Today is Valentine’s Day, a time where couples take time to spend with each other and appreciate being together.

Today reminds the world to appreciate their lover because love strengthens, intimacy brings people closer together, and through the good and bad times, love is there for support.

Newsday spoke to four couples in love on Tuesday to learn about their love and how they’ve kept their relationships going.

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Here are their stories:

Amina and Harry: love that lasts a lifetime

Prayer, dancing and curtailing mischievous behaviour is what kept Amina Patel-Ghuran, 75, and Harry Francis Ghuran, 83, together for 58 years – for 54 of which they’ve been married.

Newsday met the two shopping in Long Circular Mall, St James.

Amina said. “We pray a lot. We brought God into our relationship and that bonded us. We love to dance. We do things together. We try to communicate and that is important in a marriage.”

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Amina, originally from Belmont, met Harry when he rented a room from her neighbour. He lived in Penal and needed a place to live closer to work.

He described her as a “friendly girl” and was attracted to her charm, but she would raise hell with Harry whenever he got up to “mischief.” Harry didn’t want to say what type of mischief, but admitted, “All the mischief young people used to do, I did.”

Harry eventually stopped his mischievous ways and settled down with Amina. The two have four children and several grandchildren.

Intimacy, communication and genuinely loving each other’s company are what Amina credits for her long-lasting marriage.

“You must always have at least two dates a month,” Amina advised. She said time spent together brings a couple closer.

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“You must get time for yourself. We had children one year after the next – one was two or three years apart – but doing things together all the time helps tremendously,” she said.

The couple love to dance and they waltz, jive and salsa to the world’s greatest love songs. Elvis Presley’s Love Me Tender is one of their favourites, and Harry loves to hold Amina in his arms.

“Her whole body is music,” he said.

Forgiveness, Amina said is the secret to having a love that lasts a lifetime.

Harry doesn’t know yet, but he’s taking Amina to the Hilton Trinidad for Valentine’s Day.

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Rachel and Sherwin: love strengthened through tragedy

Today Rachael Ross, 29, and Sherwin Dick, 37, will bury their one-day-old baby.

Complications in pregnancy led to his death a week ago. Newsday met the couple while they were shopping for a burial outfit for their son.

Rachel is a labourer and Sherwin a driver. The common-law couple have been together for six years. Rachel named their son Sherwin.

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Sherwin said the past week has been difficult, but the baby’s death brought his family closer together.

“I would always be working. I would be on the grind. She would be home or working. By the time I get home, she’s sleeping or the children are sleeping.

“Now I’m spending more time with them. It’s been a long time since we walked in the mall together,” he said.

Spending time together is Sherwin’s advice for couples going through the loss of a child.

“You have to hold strong for one another and keep the faith. The man has to be there for the lady and spend more time with her.

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“A woman carried a baby for nine months and after she lost it, she would be down. Spend time with her,” he said.

Rachel describes Sherwin as her safe space.

Their only plan for Valentine’s Day is to bury their son, but Sherwin hopes he can take Rachel out for dinner.

Forbidden love: real-life Romeo and Juliet

Romeo and Juliet met in a store in Chaguanas. Romeo is a 29-year-old salesman from India and Juliet is a 21-year-old university student.

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Their names have been changed because they must keep their relationship secret. The two say they are in true love, but Juliet’s family does not approve of Romeo.

“We came from different countries, but destinies wanted us to meet and we came together. We are not from the same country, but our love is the same,” Juliet told Newsday outside a coffee shop.

Juliet said her mother had an arranged marriage, and wishes Juliet had one too.

“She doesn’t understand that I fell in love. She doesn’t know what true love is. She thinks arranged marriage is the best thing. She would tell me she would find somebody for me, but she knows that I love him,” Juliet said.

The couple cannot do anything for Valentine’s Day or Juliet’s parents would get suspicious, so they met on Tuesday for a cup of Valentine’s Day coffee.

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“I can’t even get her flowers,” Romeo said. “She can’t keep them.”

Juliet says being in love – once it’s true love – is the best feeling, and Romeo is always there to support her, especially in the hard times. Though her parents’ disapproval is difficult, Juliet believes she must fight for her love because she wants to be able to make her own decisions.

“I have to live for myself. My parents already lived their life. I love them and care for them, but I have to live with him, not them.”

Because Romeo and Juliet come from different countries, they had to adapt to their cultural differences, but because they love each other, they are willing to learn.

“We get to learn about each other’s differences. We accept each other. It’s two different people – two hearts become one. Distance, country, age, height, those things don’t matter in true love,” she said.

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Juliet hopes when she finishes her degree, her parents will see her as mature enough to make her own decisions and respect their relationship.

Steffan and Stephanie’s young love

Steffan Bhagat, 24, and Stephanie Ali-John, 22, met as first-year undergraduates at the University of the West Indies (UWI), St Augustine.

They were sitting outside Rituals and Steffan walked up to Stephanie to introduce himself.

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“I just wanted to break the ice because I thought she was beautiful,” he told Newsday at UWI.

The two became close friends, but started their relationship when Stephanie’s sister got sick and had to go into hospital. Steffan met Stephanie there and they have been together for more than three years.

Steffan loves Stephanie’s passion and intelligence.

“She has a strong fire and passion and I really love that about her. She’s amazing at anything she puts her mind to. I wish I could be like that. I don’t know where she gets that strength from,” he said.

Stephanie loves his compassion, forgiveness and commitment to her.

“I love that he’s understanding and no matter what the situation, he never looks to walk away but always work it out,” she said.

The two say they’ve never encountered many major problems in their relationship, because they are willing to work things out rather than break up.

“You invest so much in a relationship you don’t want to break that up to start all over again with something new,” she said.

The couple don’t go out partying, and when they do go out, they are always together.

“There’s nothing to pull us apart,” he said. “I don’t play. I can’t do something stupid to mess it up. I can’t look her in the eyes after that.”

The two spend their time playing games, watching TV and cuddling. Though Stephanie appreciates her personal space.

“I get buff up if I am a little too clingy. If I cling too much I would get kicked,” he said.

Steffan and Stephanie would like to get married after they finish their master’s degrees and settle into jobs. Stephanie is doing her master’s in criminology and criminal justice and Steffan is starting his in September. In the meantime, he helps Stephanie’s father sell doubles, and he’s a certified personal trainer.

The don’t have any plans for Valentine’s Day because they are both busy, but on Friday they want to go to the zoo.

 

Source: Newsday https://newsday.co.tt/2019/02/14/love-stories-of-tt/

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