Theodore and Alphanscena Henry cherish a unique type of love
There is something about youthful unadulterated love that melts even the hardest of hearts. It simply cannot go unnoticed and if you are not already experiencing it, it is a feeling yearned for.
Twenty-six-year-old Alphanscena Wright-Henry and 25-year-old Theodore Henry are newlyweds who spent a significant part of their lives in the same spaces - school and church - without crossing paths. But on New Year's Eve of 2012, by the Waterfront in downtown Kingston, something magical happened.
"That night, we went out with a group of friends to watch the fireworks at the Waterfront and got to talking during the ride home. Don't ask us how the fireworks looked or what anybody else said, because once we started talking, we couldn't stop. And things progressed from there. We started talking outside of church on the phone, though we could never have a conversation longer than 15 minutes because the signal kept cutting out. At the time, Theo lived in 'bush' and I lived in 'deeper bush'," laughed Alphan, as she is affectionately called.
Theodore, who was attracted first to Alphan's maturity and then to her one of her best physical features - her neck - stated that those were two of the attributes that led him to believe that she was indeed a keeper.
"Talking to her was different than talking to most of the other women around me and still is. Re(garding) the neck business: Alphan has the most graceful neck I've ever seen on a woman. Weird, I know, to pick out that attribute, but it's the one that really got me first. She's really good at messing with people's heads too - in a good way - writing cute messages in my hand and then refusing to comment on it, stuff like that. Despite the various obstacles at the time, though I realised this would be a good woman to pursue. So mi mek sure mi ketch har," he said laughing.
For Alphan, the attraction was quite similar.
"The average woman would probably be attracted to Theo's light brown eyes, his masculine legs or his captivating smile. But for me, that wasn't the first thing that caught my attention. I was drawn to his leadership qualities, which were demonstrated in church activities and just how he lived in general. Spending time with him, I quickly realised that he wasn't 'playing his faith', but really living it."
She added, "It made me realise that I could trust him as a man in terms of being faithful, compassionate, and loving because these traits were demonstrated in everything else that he did. He also always made me smile. He would say the most far out, ridiculous things at the most unexpected times and strangely enough (for me) I always laughed. At this point, I decided that this was a man worth having in my life. So mi ensure seh mi ketch him."
Theodore, who is a webmaster and photographer, after approximately three years with Alphanscena who is a medical technologist and trained massage therapist, decided to pop the question
"The proposal went through three or four versions before it happened. First of all, I proposed on my birthday - I figured correctly that she'd be so caught up in planning my day that she would have no idea a proposal was coming. This was the plan: we would go for a sunset boat ride, return to the shore to be met by a small group of our friends. The words 'Will You Marry Me?' would be written in fire on the beach, my best man would hand me the ring, I'd survive the mini heart attack and say the words and she would say yes. Simple."
"Well, our friends were late so the boat was out on the water circling aimlessly for nearly an hour. Rain fell, so no fire, but at the end of the day I asked her to marry me in front of more than 50 people who were hiding from the rain with us, and she said yes. It was really emotional," Theo relayed.
A few months later, the couple celebrated their love in the company of family and friends. It was a beautiful rooftop ceremony that reflected their crazy, fun-loving personality and the seriousness of their faith with a foot-washing exercise.
"We chose the foot-washing ceremony as a pledge to each other that we would do exactly that. It exemplifies servanthood and humility to each other, not as an afterthought, but as a way of life. This is one of the hallmarks of our faith (Seventh-Day Adventism), usually practised during our Communion Service and we wanted this ideal to be an integral part of our marriage."
Looking forward to even better days as their marriage progresses, the couple is sticking to some fundamental hallmarks to make this possible.
"Make sure your love triangle is between you, your spouse, and God. Make it work for you; don't let anybody else tell you how to react to and love to your spouse. Don't try to emulate anybody else's relationship either. Communicate. Speak about how you feel - good and bad. Talk about the good things to make your partner and yourself feel good. Express the bad things, not to prove the other wrong, but to seek a solution."
"And this is a bonus: be physically intimate. Yes. Sex. Do it. One hour of intimacy and good sex can wipe away six days of fighting and hurt. Physical intimacy isn't just sex though, head rubs (Theo's favourite), foot rubs (Alphan's favourite), run-dung-and-ketch in the house (playing together) and hand holding can all contribute positively to the physically intimacy of your marriage," she concluded.