How did you two meet? And what were your initial thoughts?
ChaRon: We met in a U.S History Course while attending Community College of Allegheny Campus. My initial thought was Cheryl was a cute girl who seemed to be nice, quiet and shy. Someone I wanted to get to know more about. And although we didn't talk much, due to my daily routine of writing rhymes in my notebook, we did sit next to each other in the back of the classroom. I left my number in her notebook right before summer break in anticipation she would call. I was amped and a bit surprised when she finally did!
Cheryl: I really liked his hair, he had the #Nubian twists back then, and I just basically sat next to him cause he was the only black person in the class. But he was definitely busy writing rhymes. We built our relationship as friends for sure not as GF/BF which I think ultimately helped us be more authentic. And it was Christmas break when I called.
How long have you been together?
ChaRon: Oh my, I'm scared to answer this question, but let's just say a long time. More than 10 years.
Cheryl: Oh gosh a while. I think we are at 18 years now in total.
Tell us about a special moment when you realized that you wanted more than a friendship?
ChaRon: My apologies, the answer to that may incriminate us with our parents. It may have to do with hanging out at the house while parents were away, being out late, watching movies, getting to know each other etc. Lol.
Cheryl: Yooooooooooooo! He is doing too much. I plead the fifth.
Favorite things about each other?
ChaRon: Her golden heart. I'm inspired by her selflessness and honesty and humility.
Cheryl: His passion, his hugs, his authenticity, his grateful heart.
ChaRon: When she wears one of my hats without asking and stretches it out.
Cheryl: He mad. Lol Jk jk UMMMM I would say hair in the sink from him shaving.
First date memories?
ChaRon: Whoa first date? Wow, unfortunately, my memory is not that good but I have plenty of more recent date memories. We have graduated from date nights to full date weeks. This past week we called off of work to enjoy some of our favorite restaurants, theater shows, wine tasting, comedy show etc. It was amazing sharing quality time and space with my Love.
Cheryl: Our first date was a double date with his friend, now our friend, to the movies. But he got sick so we ended up leaving early and watching movies at somebody's crib.
ChaRon: By being present, attentive, honest, direct and loving. Thinking before we speak. Speaking before we act. Being cautious with each other’s passions and feelings.
Cheryl: Definitely what he said and respecting each other and giving space. We really work on what we speak to each other. I really worked to learn how to respect his cancer sensibilities. Speaking the truth with tact.
How do you build together?
ChaRon: We build mostly by planning goals, trips, and aspirations.
Cheryl: We talk over wine sometimes late night. We have who can play the most flame songs battles. We like to keep things silly sometimes.
Do you have special things that you do (art, music, create, etc)?
ChaRon: We both are performance artists, with interest in continually growing, therefore many times we are the first set of ears and eyes to witness whatever project each of us is working on. And it's great to be able to trust Cheryl's opinion knowing she has my best at heart.
When things get tough, how do you work through your problems?
ChaRon: By communicating. No matter how difficult it may be, it's the best remedy. Prayer and meditation are also powerful practices that we utilize
Cheryl: Definitely. But we take space first. Going back to thinking before speaking.
First time you met each others family?
ChaRon: Once again, that's taking me back pass what I can remember, but I know it was quite awkward. These things take time.
Cheryl: I remember his mom came to one of my plays and I was super nervous to meet her. I knew how much he honors his mom. We are all super close now. I have great in-laws.
How important is values and family in your relationship?
Cheryl: Values and family are most important. Without our families, we would not be the people we are today therefore who knows if we would have attracted one another. It’s a balance of love and respect that we want to honor our family by working hard to bring more productivity and progression.
How did your past relationships and experiences prepare you for this one?
ChaRon: They have all been helpful in showing me the power of a strong woman. The supportive and loving role, in particular of Black Women.
Cheryl: I looked at past experiences to weed out my deal breakers as to focus more of what I don't want in terms of character.
Advice for other people in relationships or looking for love?
ChaRon: Continue being the best you are independent, it will only make the relationship better. Never stop growing yourself, and love [loved] ones by providing them [with] honesty and unconditional love.
Cheryl: I agree. And have fun with your relationship.
*all photos provided by Cheryl & ChaRon