I realized two things this morning. First, I struggled with the fact that I’ve allowed myself to become so busy and distant from the blog thatI didn’t know what to write about anymore. Second, it dawned on me that I’ve spent the last month sending our wedding images and our love story to various outlets for features, neglecting the fact that I am a writer and who better to tell the story of our love and honor the most memorable day our lives than me?
Yes, I’ve been MIA from MUA due to TWO very eventful years. In 2017, our son was born. On September 28, 2018, Germaine and I exchanged vows and dedicated our lives to each other in front of God, family, and friends. The day was big. The day was memorable. The day was magical. These are observations to any naked eye, but what that day truly meant to the two of us…
….can’t be explained nor described by anyone other than the two of us.
Growing Up HOWARD
Do you know what it’s like to grow up with the love of your life? No, I don’t mean childhood friends who played on the seesaw together and pushed each other in swings tied to oak trees. I’m not talking about the “made-for-movies” stuff. This isn’t even that high school sweetheart type of thing. That too is a fairytale. (No wonder, “Love Story” by Mariah Carey, was one of our first dance songs..lol.) I’m talking about meeting someone at the pinnacle moment of when childhood transcends into adulthood with no real guidance or structure around you because you’re both in a place and space where it’s time to learn this world and figure it out on your own. Of course, we all have support systems and family to give us advice, but this was the time of our lives where we had to live and learn on our own, endure all things (literally) and grow from it. See, I met Germaine in 2004 on the campus of Howard University. We were both Freshman (I know, if you know this already you’re rolling your eyes, but it’s OUR story) and drop dead in the middle of a whirlwind of life experiences. Come on…we were new students at Howard University. I hadn’t been an 18 year-old for a full month by the time we met. Our first week of school was full of nonstop introductory and orientation events so cleverly tied in with monumental partying EVERY NIGHT. So, not only was I completely uninterested in a relationship because I spent my high school career “in love” and experiencing heartbreak, but I also knew how plentiful my options would be. It was college! It was a HBCU! It was Howard University, the Mecca! Ok you get it…..And it was a new city for the both of us. So here I thought I would finally experience the world of dating, plus I had no time to fuss and fight over the guys at Howard since there were about one million females to every male and we all know how that goes. TUH!
To make this (extra) long story somewhat condensed, everything I said I DIDN’T want to do, I DID. ALL of it! From falling way too fast to spending a good chunk of my free time arguing with females over “that boy”. That all happened and then some. I fell, and I fell hard. It went from not wanting to be bothered with this silly dude who liked me, to me not wanting to let him out of my sight. Through all the crazy that came along with that was growth and learning. I was learning how to deal with these emotions on another level, as I was approaching adulthood. My mother couldn’t sit in my bed with me this time while I cried and complained over what we all know was a part of the process when doing this young love thing. I had to find ways to stay on my business and remember why I was in Washington, D.C. in the first place. Then there was his learning and his growth. Germaine faced so many challenges and situations that grown men may know how to deal with, but any young man would struggle with as he found his way. The hidden blessing is that I was there through it all. I got to see his tears and he got to see mine. With all that came closeness, a bond that was already unbreakable, unbeknown to us.
More Than a Feature…
I could write a novel on our history together, just the four years of college would fill 50 chapters, but that’s not what this is. This is a prelude to why September 28, 2018 was so much more than just our wedding day. This brief glimpse into the beginning of US is what sets the tone for why every person in the building that day could feel nothing but genuine love and happiness and it consumed us both. The energy was real. The energy was powerful. We celebrated our homecoming this past October and it was the class of 2008’s 10-year reunion. Do you know a fellow alum told me that our relationship inspired him? Who US? It took me back. No, not because I ever doubted our love, but because over the years I can count on FIVE hands how many outsiders did. If I had a dollar for every naysayer, both of our kid’s college tuition would be paid for. I’m just saying. But it’s life. It’s the reality of ups and downs. It’s the growth in learning that you can’t vent to everyone. It’s the understanding of loyalty and what that looks like for friends who see a glimpse of what they may not always know to be true or even the picture you paint when things aren’t going your way. But then comes the blessings. And those blessings came after lessons, and the teaching isn’t over. The growth hasn’t halted. We have a forceful bond that has taught us how to strengthen and build one another up and look not only in our own mirrors and evaluate our own reflections, but to be the mirror for each other as well. I know Germaine better than he knows himself, whether he accepts that or not. And vice-versa.
This is more than a ‘feature’. This is more than a post for likes and comments or social media fame. This is my personal journal entry for how September 28, 2018 reset our lives. BOOM! That was day I saw the version of the man I always knew would be mine. I saw a MAN. My Husband. Not my boyfriend who had to mature through college. Not my children’s father who had to grow into fatherhood and grapple with the scary reality that it inevitably presents. Not even my fiancé who had to adjust with the fact that this is it bro, playtime is over. And I am sure he saw growth in me too. I know it. I was and am faaaarrrr from perfect. I know my flaws and the ones I try to conceal by bringing up his. Oh you better know he let me see myself for who I really am. Check! We both had some maturity hurdles that kept us from winning along the way and forced us to go right back to the start and fight through another race of love and friendship. Oh, but on September 28, 2018, BABY….we crossed that finish line. Every obstacle was worth it. Even the mini successes we had that helped push us along were not forgotten. It all taught us how to love on a whole other level.
Love Endures All Things
See this league we’re in now, it’s not for the faint-hearted. But we’ve been prepped and prepared and Love Endures All Things is more than words from a scripture. It’s real life. It’s FACTS as this new generation would say. There isn’t a stone, hell a boulder, that could be thrown our way that would stop this journey. Through God, love, friendship, and family, we have held up and been held up by an everlasting armor of support and strength. There is no down from here. Salute to US. We did it, we’re here and The Salmons will never falter!
To My Husband:
I love YOU. My #1, forever and always.Tiara Salmon, 2018
Watch below for a snippet of our wedding
From Howard to Honeymoon
Thank you so much to all of those who not only supported us on our day, but have remained constant systems of support throughout our lives. We love you and we appreciate you all.
Dress: Allure Bridals via The Bridal Boutique in Columbia, MD
Shoes: Manolo Blahnik
Makeup: Janessa Ortiz
Hair: Arneisha Robinson
Photographer: Ryan Harris, RH Imagery
Videographer: Kyle Hammonds, A Kyle Hammonds Visual
Tuxedo: Calvin Klein
Groom’s Shoes: Saks Fifth Avenue
Bridesmaids Gowns: The Dessy Group
Groomsmen Tuxedos: Generation Tux