Zora Neal Hurston once said, "Love makes your soul crawl out from its hiding place." That is the kind of love worth living for, the kind of love that protects and understands. It allows you to be your self with all of your imperfect parts, appearing perfectly in the eyes of your lover. And if you take a stroll down the Instagram timelines of Miami, FL couple Amir and Vanessa Celestine, you will find your self caught up in the rapture of all things right and rich in black love.
Art is love and the bond shared between Amir and Vanessa is a creative necessity of existence and the power of a unit. The two recently took their affinity for creative arts (all things black love if you will), and created NouNou Home, a photo collection of their personal love abode, handmade goods and home design inspo, completely centered around the feel good vibes and aura of their love. Representation matters when it comes to the concept of not only love, but strong family units and the expression of ones self.
We asked the couple how do they keep the romance is their relationship: one word, SEX. Don't be shy or a prude, that is after all, a very important ingredient! All jokes aside, Amir and Vanessa consciously make an effort to do the same activities that built up the fire and desire during their courtship, such as dancing, photo shoots, outdoor adventures and traveling to new places. What does Amir love most about Vanessa? Her fiery spirit is what attracted him. "She's a go-getter, and a great one at that."
And how about Vanessa? "I love his beard. I thank sweet baby Jesus for it all the time, LOL," she says jokingly. Amir's calming spirit and integrity is what won her over. "I needed someone with his discipline and patience to complement my weakness." Your life partner should do that for you, and you in turn should put to rest any insecurities they may have with the power of your love. Love is a beautiful thing, the strength and power that unites black couples together is something that's "truly divine." We asked the couple for their definition of black love, and Vanessa's response snatched our edges and tugged on the strings of our soul. Black love personified came full circle for the couple during their honeymoon.
"While on our honey moon in Paris, my husband and I watched the video of Philando Castile's last moments in silence. Once it was done, you could feel the atmosphere in our little Parisian flat change. The gravity of being black had laid heavy burdens on our shoulders. We felt helpless. We felt discouraged. We felt broken. And maybe a little defeated. As a black woman, a partner to a black man, how do I shield him? How do I encourage him? How do I position him to be seen as a king and a mighty man and not a thug in the eyes of society? How do I protect him? How can I assure him that his clean record, clean-cut, respectful demeanor and faith in God is enough to save his life?
I could feel the weight on his shoulders too, and see the pain in his eyes as he saw himself move down the food chain to become hunted prey. So I grabbed him and held him in my arms as if they could shield him from the outside world. I wanted him to know that I am with him. I wanted him to know that I would be defending him until we took our last breath. I wanted him to know that those vows we took before God (better or for worse - till death do us part) are pierced in my heart in allegiance to his well-being and livelihood. Then in one of the weakest and vulnerable moments in our seven-day marriage, we both got on our knees and prayed. We prayed for peace, justice, restoration, strength, discernment, and victory over the weapons of the enemy. That's black love. We suffer together. We persevere together."
Grabs tissue, slowly claps and reaches out for a strong hug because Vanessa just took us there! If THAT isn't what black love is and all about, I ain't black. Get into all the goodness of black love that is The Celestines' and follow their love story on IG.