As part of our community series, we’re hoping to connect you with all-around badasses in the South Asian community. This time we're doing a couple spotlight. We've interviewed Seema, who is here to share the story about how she met her husband Krzysztof.
At LUKH, diversity of thought, culture and identity is what inspires us everyday. We hope to share inspiring stories and helpful resources to continue fostering this inclusion in our community.
How did you two meet? When did you start dating?
We both fatefully crossed our paths in the crowded middle school hallway when Krzysztof, a known troublemaker, ran right into me. At the time we were perfect strangers, little did we know we would end up married!
It was years later when we officially met. This time I noticed that a couple of gummy bears were thrown my way and landed in my lap during lunch.
But this sweet and playful food fight was the start of our even sweeter relationship. Since that moment we started to have lunch together regularly with a group of our friends. As we learned more about each other and learned to enjoy each other’s company, we decided it was time for our first official date. We started to officially date on May 20, 2013.
What type of couple are you?
I would describe Krzysztof and myself as a goofy couple since we love to crack jokes and pull pranks on each other.
We both love to go on a hike, go for a run, and travel but if I was to choose one thing, I would always love to just sit on the couch and put my head on Krzysztof’s shoulder and watch our favorite shows, such as Naruto.
How did you tell your family you two were dating?
I told my mom and siblings after the first year of dating Krzysztof. I still remember the moment when I broke the news to my mom. I cleverly chose the time when she was doing laundry so that she could be distracted and not hear the news properly. However, mothers always figure out their kids even if they haven't spoken a word. At the end, I spilled the news that I like someone.
I told my dad about my relationship after I got engaged. I know, I hid my relationship for 6 years! I was too scared to confront him that I was dating someone, because dating in my culture means marriage so I texted him paragraphs explaining who I was basically and why I made a certain choice.
How did your family respond when you started dating? Were there any challenges? How did that change over time?
In the beginning, my mom responded that I was too young to understand love, and to maintain only friendship so I don’t get hurt if we break up. My mom and siblings would always prefer me to choose someone within my culture and weren’t 100% happy with my choice even after my engagement.
My dad was against my relationship and didn’t believe in it. He told me that he accepts his daughter, but will pretend that I never fell in love with someone who is different and would not acknowledge Krzysztof even after marriage. My dad wanted Krzysztof to convert so society could accept our relationship and not consider it as a sin. However, I fought back and did not want anyone to change against their will. There was a period of time, where I did not talk with my dad over several months. This, not only hurt me but also hurt my dad since I was his closest and first daughter.
Few months before the wedding, my dad accepted my relationship openly as if the fights and disagreements never happened. Today, he is happy as long as his daughter and son in law are happy with each other.
Tell us about your proposal story.
It was on May 20 2019, where we were in Florence, Italy. That day there was a light drizzle and we had to make our journey to Piazzale Michelangelo in Florence where we could see a view of the entire city. With the rain making it a less than ideal hair day for me, I took the opportunity to fix my hair once we reached the lookout. Just then, Krzysztof seized the moment. He got down on one knee and waited for me to turn back around to see him on his knees holding a ring. When I turned, I yelled, “are you serious?!” and through rounds of laughs, tears, and at least ten repetitions of the phrase “are you joking?” ….I said yes!
How are you two handling wedding planning this year?
I started to plan my wedding right after my engagement. For at least 10 months, I had to do all the planning by myself since no one from my family was supportive and the majority of my friends had no idea what to do in the wedding planning.
Both Krzysztof and I were the only ones who worked hard after work or on the weekends to find the vendors, finalize outfits, wedding cards and the list goes on.
But there is always something coming our way and it was a Pandemic! Our hashtag was ideal in our process, #SeemsKrzy (seems crazy)! All the planning that we did went into unplanning the entire wedding since we did not want to risk anyone's health and safety. Despite this, we still decided to tie a knot on 7/11 because we did not want to wait any longer. So just five days before the wedding, we decided to have one of our friends officiate us with a small ceremony and we held an intimate reception at my parents backyard. We couldn’t have our big memorable wedding as originally planned, but instead we got the next best thing, a backyard party in Sayreville where it all started.
Are there any words of wisdom you'd like to offer to other couples in a similar situation as you?
Both Krzysztof and I said in our vows, “It’s gonna be us against the world.” In the end, no matter the ups and downs, your partner’s love and support is enough to brighten your day. So never give up!