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‘Love is not always a feeling, it is a decision.’ With that beautiful thought in mind, Nivedita Shetty and Rohith Vallus’s friendship graduated into a beautiful relationship that only grew with time. From simple surprises to a magical proposal amidst the northern lights… Fairytales do come true, let’s hear it from Nivedita herself!
Our love story goes back to 2014 while we both were doing our masters at Northeastern University, Boston. While I lived in Mumbai for 21 years of my life, Rohith was born and brought up in Hyderabad. We belong to different cultures, speak different languages, have two different areas of study and yet were strongly bound by love.
My roommate played cupid in introducing Rohith to me. They had been classmates for long, and one afternoon, while I was casually chatting with her about ‘the kind of guy’ I would like to date, she prompted me to see Rohith’s Facebook profile. “Nivi, he would be perfect for you,” she said. My first reaction was not very favourable, little did I know that a year later, I would be crazy about the same man! To be honest, there was nothing wrong with Rohith’s Facebook profile, it just was a bit weird to look into a random guys’ profile and seem interested. For me, it was very necessary to know the person, connect emotionally, spend time together. Rohith was exactly the tall, dark and handsome guy I was looking for, just that I had to meet him to know that he had a wonderful heart too.
Finally, as Christmas break arrived, my friend coaxed me into meeting him and I tagged along for a party at his place. This was the first time I met him, and I must say, I was absolutely mind blown by the Hyderabadi biryani he had cooked for us! Although I was definitely amazed that he cooked for so many people all by himself, I had loved his friendly and welcoming nature the best. We later exchanged numbers, went out with a few friends for outdoor activities and bumped into each other at a couple of different places. With every meet I subconsciously started falling for him. I loved everything about him - his friendly nature, his cool dressing style, his passion to try new things and of course, the fact that he could cook so damn well! Being the impulsive Aries woman that I am, I could not hold on to my feelings for too long and quickly confessed my love to him. Sadly, he wasn’t interested at that point in time and suggested that we’d be better off as friends. I was certainly disappointed but was definitely not ready to give up. I really thought that we could make a great couple and tried my level best to impress him in my own little ways. I still don’t know what worked, but one fine day, just before I was leaving for India for my Christmas break, Rohith asked me to meet him and said, “I am not sure if I’ll love you forever, but I love you for now”. That was all I wanted to know and appreciated him for his honesty. Since then (December 13th, 2014) there was no looking back. The ‘I love for you now’ quickly changed to ‘I love you more with each passing day’. I always believed that LOVE isn’t a feeling; it’s a decision. Feelings come and go, but the decision to stand strong, be there in the toughest storms and face it together for eternity was something we yet had to decide.
Things took a turn when I had to leave for a different state in USA to pursue my PhD while Rohith stayed back in Boston. We spent hours skyping and flying every month and would also take little trips to explore a new city together. And it was during one such trip to Alaska that my life changed… Forever! The entire trip was a complete surprise for me and I had absolutely no clue of the places we were going to visit or the activities we planned to do. On our very first day in Alaska, he took me to Mendenhall glacier for a hike. This was my first hike and the best one ever. Not only was the surrounding beautiful but his company made it easy as we walked up hand-in-hand. We finally reached the beautiful ice caves and the next few moments have been forever etched in my mind… He proposed to me amidst the Northern lights! To say that I was stunned would be an understatement. My happiness knew no bounds and I was definitely tongue tied to say the least. Never in my wildest dreams did I expect Rohith to go down on his knee, but it was the most heart touching moment of my life. He had spent months planning our vacation and finalizing the perfect proposal ring for me. I did not even bother to say a YES and just gave him a tight hug for the sweetest gesture.
We are best friends first and that is what makes our bond so unique. I wouldn’t want to imagine my life with anyone other than him as he gets out the best in me. We sure have our ups and downs as anyone else, but we have and will always stand by each other through it all.