Today, September 28, 2008, marks four decades that my parents have been married.

40 years is no joke, especially considering my parents’ unusual romance. As my dad himself disclosed in an awesome comment on my Vegas post, he has “also experienced some negative reactions from family, friends and even people who do not know me at all, because I married MY soulmate, who was older than me with two children. I said was, because now she is much younger that me! …at least, that is how she looks to me.”

I must say, Mama Bella does look stunning. And not a lick of plastic surgery or cosmetic injectables on her, for the record. She’s an obsessive water drinker, and that’s one of her beauty secrets I need to work on if I want to look like her when I’m in my Tina Turner years.

My parents were both born and raised in Belmont, a suburb of Port of Spain in Trinidad. My mother was 29 and divorced, raising two kids on her own — my sister Petal and my brother Clint. My father was just 19 years old, the best friend of her baby brother, my uncle Rhoden. My father recounted the relationship for me on the phone today.

“The circumstances that brought us together were not the best. There were so many people who weren’t ready for us, who tried to interfere in our lives. The world wasn’t ready for us, and those difficulties made us stick together. Because of all of that, we bonded, and we became best friends. Not everybody was supportive, from family right down. People just stop talking to you, everybody makes your business, their business. Your mother is an extremely courageous woman to have stuck through it with me. She got it from all sides, from her parents, her sisters, her brother, her friends. She saw gold in me. What I had in me, I didn’t even know yet. But she saw gold.”

My parents eloped, and famously, Mama Bella wore a white leather mini dress to her wedding. Hey, it was the Sixties!

They had three children of their own, my brothers Patrick and Dominic, then me almost ten years later, long after they assumed no more kids were in store.

I’m not going to sit here and pretend that it’s been a seamless and idyllic 40 years. My parents have been through just about everything. “We have withstood things that have led many other couples to divorce,” my dad informed me today. Watching my parents marriage – the loving moments and the arguments, the lofty ambitions and the crushing disappointments, struggles over money and the rewards of hard work, and between it all managing to raise five children and realize quite a few of their shared dreams — has been an invaluable education for me. Without all of that, I wouldn’t be the Afrobella you are reading today.

When I asked Mama and Papa Bella their secrets to lasting love, their answers were unsurprisingly similar.

“Prayer first, and compromise. And prayer to help you through the compromise. Unhesitatingly, I will tell you that,” my mother said with a hearty laugh.

My dad replied, “Prayers. And luck. Finding the right person has a lot to do with it, and most times people choose the wrong person. So there’s an element of luck. Marriage can be heaven or hell. But once you find the right person, you live a good life, and you pray, and you share everything the good and the bad, in sickness and in health – you good. I sometimes wonder what my life would have been like, without your mother. I can’t even imagine. I don’t think anyone else in the world could have been as compatible with me.”

As their youngest daughter, I gotta say that I agree. Despite so many odds — a ten year age difference, being practically excommunicated by their families (most everyone has come around, I’m happy to report), and some really trying times and marital obstacles, my parents have stuck it through. Forty years! That deserves some kind of reward, and they’ve found that in each other. Mom and Dad, I love you very, very much. Here’s to many, many more wonderful years to come. I learn more and more invaluable lessons in life and love from you every day — thank you so much for allowing me to share the lessons I’ve learned from you, with so many people around the world. Love! What a beautiful thing.

Hey bellas — Feel free to wish Mama and Papa Bella a happy anniversary — most of you who read this blog regularly know that they’re reading and will most likely leave a comment of their own somewhere!


Bebroma says:
September 29, 2008, 12:19 am
Happy Anniversary, Mama & Papa Bella! What an accomplishment, staying together and raising your children, such a good example of what a real man and a real woman look like. The Bible says a three-fold cord (God in your marriage, plus the two of you) cannot quickly be torn in two -- from what you said about prayers, it is obvious how important it is to have that. I like what you said, "prayer to help you through the compromise" LOL!! May you have many more years together, and much joy. Now I think I'll go drink a quart of water! Feel free to share what else is in your bag of tricks, 'cause I'm tipping over into 40, and I'm much more interested in maintenance than I used to be!
pets says:
September 29, 2008, 12:20 am
Yup 40 years! of our parents being's parents were married for 40 years when dad married mom!so there is staying power in the genes...clint will be 17 years this year, you have made 6 & dominic will be 14.....wonderful post..they'll really enjoy it!
bella says:
September 29, 2008, 12:22 am
Hey Bebroma! Mama Bella shared her beauty tips here (and I just realized I posted a photo from the same party, LOL! I love that skirt) I will get her to recommend some of her favorite products soon. That post is long overdue!
The Connoisseur says:
September 29, 2008, 12:54 am
First and foremost, Happy Anniversary to the lovely couple! Oui Pappa, that is time yes!! Bella, it's a coincidence that I too am celebrating a day of love and strength. Today is my mother's 60th birthday. We just lost my dad (well it has been a year, but it still feels like yesterday) to cancer and my mom is my heart and soul - along with my 3 other siblings. My Mom and Dad have been together for 33 years, it still amazed me as I watched how time can pass and their love for each other grew stronger and stronger like a fine wine. All through the good times and tribulations. I will be honest, your write up brought a tear to my eye. :) But for all the right reasons! Again, I wish your parents continued happiness and love. Show the youngsters what it is about! By the way, I do not mean to do a shameless plug, but you being of West Indian descent WILL enjoy my entry! I am a proud carrier of Saint Lucian blood in these Canadian Please do check it out! :)
sandra says:
September 29, 2008, 1:00 am
A fine couple indeed. After 26 years of marriage :I understand the trials of 40 years, the committment, love and resolve demanded.Compromise, understanding, a willing to listen and laughter lightens the load. Marriage is tough-You've got to be committed to staying marriage and working through your issues: together. As long as you listen and agree to disagree with out being disagreeable you have half a chance. It's so nice to see strong and solid couples such as yours. You are blessed. Thank you for sharing them with me.
Huemanity says:
September 29, 2008, 12:05 am
Congratulations Mama and Papa Bella! I'm only on year three of my marriage - 40 seems like a looooooong way away - LOL. But seriously, marriage can be a beautiful struggle with incredible results, such as Bella herself. Again, congratulations!
Dee says:
September 29, 2008, 1:19 am
I'm a lurker too, but I wanted to wish them a happy anniversary. Such a beautiful couple!
Luvvie says:
September 29, 2008, 12:36 am
I'm usually a lurker, but I couldn't resist wishing Pa and Ma Bella a HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!! They are the picture of AWESOME! Black Love is a beautiful thing, I tell ya. I definitely wish for that in marriage.
LB says:
September 29, 2008, 3:45 am
Happy Anniversary to Mama and Papa Bella :-) They look so young and happy. I truly believe in prayer and compromise in marriage (especially the compromise part). It will be only 17 years of marriage for me in Oct. I want to grow up and look like Mama Bella. She looks amazing :-) Congratulations again on your beautiful lasting love for each other. Lisa
DblDee says:
September 29, 2008, 4:38 am
Happy Anniversary Mama and Papa Bella!!! :) -- Maya Angelou, "In and Out of Time" The sun has come. The mist has gone. We see in the distance... our long way home. I was always yours to have. You were always mine. We have loved each other in and out of time. When the first stone looked up at the blazing sun and the first tree struggled up from the forest floor I had always loved you more. You freed your braids... gave your hair to the breeze. It hummed like a hive of honey bees. I reached in the mass for the sweet honey comb there.... I love your hair. You saw me bludgeoned by circumstance. Lost, injured, hurt by chance. I screamed to the heavens....loudly screamed.... Trying to change our nightmares to dreams... The sun has come. The mist has gone. We see in the distance our long way home. I was always yours to have. You were always mine. We have loved each other in and out in and out in and out of time. :) :) :)
Noirebella says:
September 29, 2008, 5:40 am
Wow! Forty years. Congratulations Mama and Papa Bella. I am thirty four years old, never married and hoping to be some day. I've been wondering if I'm cursed because all the men I meet are younger. To be honest I have been judging men on the basis of their age thinking that it could never work. Forty years is proof that it can! I guess I need to open my mind.
Mochagold118 says:
September 29, 2008, 7:30 am
Here is to Mama and Papa Bella, many happy returns for many more wonderful years of love, happiness and great health. I want to be just like them when I grow up, and creeping into 10 years myself I pray by God's grace I too can make it to 40years. So to love happiness and great marriage here is a toast with your favorite drink!!!
Bridgette says:
September 29, 2008, 7:32 am
This was a beautiful entry! Happy anniversary to Mama and Papa Bella! May you celebrate many many more together.
Rogbog4299 says:
September 29, 2008, 6:46 am
40 years is no joke! No, 40 years is a lifetime and then some!
MrsYFA says:
September 29, 2008, 7:50 am
Wow, what a beautiful example. I just instantly thought of Garnett Silk's "Nothing Can Divide Us". Happy Anniversary to Mama and Papa Bella! I pray you continue to reap the benefits of loving without a limit.
ceecee says:
September 29, 2008, 7:55 am
happy anniversary Mama and Papa Bella! Your story is amazing and inspiring...I'm going to start praying extra hard not to marry the wrong person! ...and I've got to get on the water train.
LoveIsDope says:
September 29, 2008, 8:09 am
Congratulations to your parents for forty years of marriage! That is wonderful. :) It is absolutely invaluable to have the example of a strong marriage (through good and bad) right in your own household. I actually think it's great that you have seen your parents go through struggles too. If everything seemed peachy all the time or awful all the time, you would have ended up with a skewed perception of how and why marriages work. My parents set an awful example, but fortunately, I think all those goofy 80's movies led me to believe that true love does exist. (And it does! Thank you Molly Ringwald and John Cusack.) I think the extreme examples of my parents' marriage and movie relationships led me to a more realistic middle position. I set out into the world firmly believing that there was a man who I could have a fun, adventurous, happily ever after with and I did find him. We've been married for over a year now and somehow it feels like we've known eachother for ever, but just got married yesterday. :)
Mrs.Mckinzie says:
September 29, 2008, 8:46 am
Happy Anniversary Mama and Papa Bella.Mama Bella you look beautiful,and Papa Bella you are sharp.Thank you for being such an inspiration to me,and my husband of almost 2 years.
September 29, 2008, 8:52 am
Bella your post over the last few days have been so touching. Your parent's story is most inspiring. I was a divorced 30 yrs old women when I meet my future husband who was 23. We married 10 months after we meet and have been together for 5 years. I can only pray that we have a long lasting loving relationship like your parents. BTW, your mom looks greats!!! I would have never guessed that she was 10 yrs older than your dad. People always assume that my husband is older then me. LOL @ her advise about not gossiping. I think I'm going to listen to your mom and stop talking bout folks.
tracey in Ohio says:
September 29, 2008, 9:03 am
What another beautiful "love story" (LOL!) Happy Anniversary Mr. & Mrs. Bella! Nice to see real, true love that endures. He's handsome & she's gorgeous.
T.T. says:
September 29, 2008, 8:04 am
Congratulations Mama and Papa Bella! The two of you are shining examples for us all to follow!!!
Kandee says:
September 29, 2008, 9:34 am
You made me cry at work! *Sniff Sniff* Happy Anniversary! I hope that my marriage inspires my children in the same way. I hope that they feel from us the rich and deep love you feel from your parents. Here's to many more years to come!
b. says:
September 29, 2008, 9:40 am
Happy anniversary, Mama and Papa Bella! May this year's blessing be outdone only by the blessings of tomorrow! I must say, ya'll are FLY! Afrobella, no wonder you are the marvelous person you are; you have a great example. This post gives me great joy and hope as I celebrate my 3rd year of marriage next week and ten years of knowing my spouse. The others comments here of people who are married also give me hope. Sometimes, after hearing various news stories and watching tv/movies, it seems as if no one remains married anymore. Thank ya'll for proving otherwise! :D
nikki says:
September 29, 2008, 9:41 am
Ma and Pa Bella, congratulations on 40 years of marriage!! You two look very happy still and I wish you 40 more years of happiness!!!
Niki says:
September 29, 2008, 9:52 am
Mama & Papa Bella, congratulations on 40 years! You are what true love looks like--you have obviously set an example for your children. Continued happiness!
Yan says:
September 29, 2008, 9:57 am
Happy Anniversary to your parents. I did the math and your mother looks F.A.N.T.I.S.T.I.C! Your dad's pretty sharp too. May they have many more year of continued bliss! Looking forward to those Mama Bella secrets.
Wes says:
September 29, 2008, 10:00 am
What beautiful parents you have!!! I wish them a very happy anniversary and many more... I adore a couple who can be strong and withstand so much. Love will and can truly conquer all.
BK says:
September 29, 2008, 10:11 am
Happy anniversary Mama & Papa Bella!!!! It's great to see a love that has endured all this time.. gives bellas like me hope!!! and neither of them look their age!!! Ha.. I love it!
tanya says:
September 29, 2008, 10:11 am
Congratulations Mama and Papa Bella, Your marriage serves as an inspiration to us all. And it serves as a lesson in love, understanding, and patience. Thank you Bella for sharing their story with us.
nolagirl says:
September 29, 2008, 10:19 am
40 years! I think its more than just water thats Keeping Mama Bella happy and young looking, Bella I think you are working with great genes! Happy Anniversairy Mama and Papa Bella!
ChocolateOrchid says:
September 29, 2008, 9:24 am
Happy Anniversary, Mama and Papa Bella! They are absolutely beautiful! It's such a blessing to have love in your life and their 40 years together attests to that! Mama Bella looks radiant! Bella this post your recent other posts are truly blessing me! Thanks for sharing!!
westindianladee says:
September 29, 2008, 10:29 am
Happy Anniversary Mama and Papa Bella!!! You both have been leading by example how to stick it through with love, prayer, and compromise to your kids and even to us hopefuls out here in the blogosphere. Here's wishing you both many more beautiful, joyous years!
civilrightstoday1 says:
September 29, 2008, 10:31 am
I haven’t made a comment in some time now. So here goes.... I think it’s absolutely beautiful the relationship you two have. I say even in the mist of your storms, please stick together. No mater what. If there are problems, work it out. Remember why you both decided to get married. Stay faithful to each other in all that you do. Let no man no matter what race or religion enter your world and break it apart. So many people, no matter what race are so quick to say I love you and get married without ever knowing what that means. We live in an instant society that is selfish and wants it now or does things out of condition "gets" meaning, “I do for you, if you do for me.” “My sister” and I say this in spirit, hold true to your love and soul. If you love this man, then honey love him with all of your heart. And I say this not just for you but for all of my Bella’s on the internet. Stop limiting your selves based on race, color, or physical appearances or some invisible loyalty to your race. Trust me it fades, and at the end of the day what will you have left? I pray that those who are looking, hoping, praying and waiting on a suitable mate to come into there lives be blessed with one no matter what race, color or creed they are. It’s about love and communication at the end of the day. By the way he is handsome! (…does he have a brother, cousin, uncle, good friend?) LOL
Amn.eris says:
September 29, 2008, 10:42 am
Congrats to your parents. What a beautiful couple. I wish them 40 more years of marriage!!
Aisha says:
September 29, 2008, 11:25 am
This is so sweet and inspiring. Happy Anniversary to Mama and Papa Bella and many more to come!
Shell says:
September 29, 2008, 11:31 am
I'm a little late with my wishes. Happy anniversary to Mama and Papa Bella.
mojitochica says:
September 29, 2008, 11:43 am
Bellas, you all are such an inspiration to this newlywed that has been married exactly one year today. I hope we make it to our 40 year anniversary! Congratulations and I hope you have many more years of celebration!
LD in PDX says:
September 29, 2008, 11:51 am
Continued blessings to each of you and your union! My folks have been together for 40 years this past June...and I know this is no small feat!!! Take care! And good job with Ms. Bella she is a true and wonderful spirit!
missmajestic says:
September 29, 2008, 11:51 am
wow, your parent's make such a handsome couple, they look so good together!
Resa says:
September 29, 2008, 11:58 am
Happy Anniversary!!!!!!!! YESSS, I love this post. Very inspirational... that love is ever lasting with God in your life leading the way. Meanwhile, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE make a post in regards to your mother's beauty tips, favorite products, and skin regimen. Lol. Thank you =)
DiosaNegra1967 says:
September 29, 2008, 1:27 pm
may they continue to have many, many more wonderful years together!
Davina says:
September 29, 2008, 1:33 pm
Congrats to them :) It's quite an accomplishment in this day and age.
Trinichica says:
September 29, 2008, 2:22 pm
Happy Anniversary to such a beautiful couple!! I wish you so many more! Bless
Yolanda says:
September 29, 2008, 1:34 pm
Congratulations on 40 years!!! What a lovely post for an absolutely lovely couple. I can definitely see where you got such fantastic genes from- simply beautiful!
Eboni says:
September 29, 2008, 2:46 pm
I L-O-V-E it!!!! I happened onto to this webiste surfing the web one day and have been hooked ever since...:-) 40 years!!! An awesome accomplishment and an inspiration for all. I love to see success stories instead of all the negative reports of divorce that we see today. I am still a baby in the marriage world(only a year and a half)but I can appreciate what Mama Bella and Papa Bella have to say about how to make it work. You two are both very beautiful people. Please continue to share your "secrets" to marriage. And I a pray many more years of blessed love with your soulmate.
StAr says:
September 29, 2008, 3:02 pm
Congratulations and may you be blessed to have many more blissful years together!!!!!!!!!!!!
Denise says:
September 29, 2008, 3:27 pm
Awesome! Congrats. I love reading about people who have sustained their marriages. My parents have been married for 35 years, so i do have a good direct example, but it is always great to read more. I only have 5 months under my belt, so 5 years seems like a fete to me. I can't wait to continute to develop and grow with my husbsand as Mama and Papa Bella have done! Happy Anniversary- I pray you have many more:)
Nicole says:
September 29, 2008, 4:08 pm
I just wanted to say HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!! It is beautiful that two people are able to make it and are still going strong. I come from a single parent home. My grandparents on my mother's side had been married for 60 years and my grandparents on my father's side had been married for 52. I want so much for that myself and it is so hard to find a man to commit. I am just like most single women who want that. I was married once before when I was 22 but divorced soon after. We have a beautiful son to show for it but I wasn't patient enough to wait until he matured enough to be married. Now I long for the day I find someone who is ready to be fully committed. I want another child but I am not going to have one unless I am married. Maybe one day if I am not too old. My forties is right around the corner. I wish your parents all the best!!!
Anaylli says:
September 29, 2008, 4:32 pm
Awww, Happy Anniversary to Mama and Papa Bella! They're beautiful...
sho nuff says:
September 29, 2008, 7:25 pm
happy anniversay momma and poppa bella! and many, many more! that's just not something you hear on a regular basis. i'll be dead before i can be married for forty years.....unless something awesome happens in the next couple of weeks!
Sabrina97 says:
September 29, 2008, 7:45 pm
Happy birthday Mom and Pop Bella! My parents are at 38 years and counting. It's god to see couples growing together and debunking the myth of the disappearance of the black family. I am always given hope...
Tomica D Harper says:
September 29, 2008, 9:14 pm
Happy Belated Anniv. and I wish you soul-mates the best happiness that life can give you both! Stay as beautiful as you are and continue to out shine everything and every one of the world may God continue to keep you both.
lovelyjd says:
September 29, 2008, 10:03 pm
Happy Anniversary! I am inspired by your love!
Butta says:
September 29, 2008, 11:01 pm
Happy Anniversary to Mama and Papa Bella! What an encouraging story of love despite all obstacles and odds. It's funny because I'm in a relationship with a man who is 9 years my junior, and we just celebrated our 6-month anniversary of dating this weekend. I can only hope to be in a loving and lasting relationship as long as your parents.
LBellatrix says:
September 29, 2008, 11:22 pm
Happy happy anniversary to Mama and Papa Bella! My parents will celebrate 44 years of marriage this December. It's wonderful to see love that lasts! (LBell goes to drink a quart of water before bed)
UnalteredBeauty says:
September 30, 2008, 12:03 am
Angelica says:
September 30, 2008, 1:40 am
please post the wedding pic of mini-skirt. I've got to see that. lol.
nyc/caribbean ragazza says:
September 30, 2008, 10:57 am
Congrats to mama and papa bella!
Curlychronicles says:
September 30, 2008, 3:54 pm
Aww this is lovely! Happy Anniversary! :)
Lauren says:
September 30, 2008, 5:24 pm
HAPPY 40th ANNIVERSARY MAMA AND PAPA BELLA!! Ur parents are a gorgeous couple! It is always wonderful to see two people who love each other overcome odds and find true happiness and peace with each other! I must add that I know mama bella and she is more beautiful than those pictures can show, inside and out!! And papa's humor and wisdom are to be envied by all! love u guys and happy anniversary! Thank you for deciding to have another child all those years ago and giving us Afrobella! We are all better 4 it!
Nandi says:
September 30, 2008, 9:02 pm
Happy Anniversary to Mama and Papa Bella!!! Those pictures show a couple that has lived a loving and meaningful life together. As happy as I am for them, I have to say that I can see why their being together at ages 29 and 19 respectively would have caused some concern (but not justify the cruelty they received). As the mother of twin girls aged 19, I know I'd be unhappy if I learned that they intended to get married at this age. I can also freely admit that I'd be even more concerned if the partner they chose at such a young age was considerably older than them and already had children. How can I explain it? I want my girls to gain more life experience before they can think about committing their lives to someone, let alone becoming parents or step-parents. I want them to finish college, work a while, get to know themselves better, and so much more. I do hope you don't take this as a negative comment, but I think it's so easy for us in hindsight to say, it all worked out, so it would be okay for the next 19-year-old. Please also understand, it's not the age-gap per se that I oppose, it's the difference in maturity and life experiences between a 19-year-old and someone 10 years older. I know that gap is closed as we get older and it is a different scenario when we talk of say a 53-year-old and a 80-year-old e.g. Graca Machel and Nelson Mandela;-) Your parents successful marriage definitely challenges many of the concerns I've raised, but I think it would be more meaningful if we told this story to our kids and grand-kids in the context of "this could have gone very wrong" and that "19 is a very young age to be thinking of starting a family". So sorry for blogging on your blog. I guess my comments are really targeted at my daughters who, btw, love your blog and really look up to you.
Dad and Mom says:
September 30, 2008, 9:59 pm
Thanks to all of you who took the time to post a comment. We truly appreciate your very kind and encouraging words. We particularly appreciate the last post since we agree that our situation may not work for everyone.The difference is that, as parents, we would communicate rather than alienate. We already said that we were very, very lucky and in spite of all that was happening around us, we stuck together. Look, there is a lot more that we can share, but then, you will not buy the book. So thanks again for taking the time to respond and may God bless you all. D&M
TIAZ says:
October 1, 2008, 11:45 am
Happy Anniversary to Mama and Papa Bella. I was directed to the blog from Patrick's facebook page and I must say how moved I was.....words fail me. Peace in your hearts, peace in your marriage, peace in your home.
heyhey says:
October 1, 2008, 6:18 pm
I raise my glass of water in toast to Mama & Papa Bella! Congrats! (My "Tina Turner Years"... I'm going to start using that phrase regularly)
Kweenie says:
October 1, 2008, 7:06 pm
Happy Anniversary! I'm a newlywed--We've only been married two months, but I know I married my best friend. We're going to aim for those 40 years and more! :)
Naki says:
October 1, 2008, 11:39 pm
Beautiful story! Parents Bella: congratulations and excellent success! It's always inspiring to see happily married black couples! My parents are celebrating their 35th in November, I'm so proud of them.
HarlemBella says:
October 2, 2008, 12:17 pm
Congratulations Mama and Papa Bella!! 40 years is really amazing and Afrobella this post is so inpriational. I'm preparing to marry my high school sweetheart next year, after 10 years of "courting". I know that he's absolutely the one for me but marriage has always been a daunting idea. Reading this post, along with the praying I've been doing, give me the strength and wisdom to understand that it doesn't have to be so overwhelming. In these times it's so nice to see such commitment to one another and I can only pray that my fiance and I will have the ability to do the same. Thank you so much for sharing. Congrats again!!
Divaborn says:
October 3, 2008, 10:14 pm
HAPPY, HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!! What an inspiring milestone!
BoBa says:
October 4, 2008, 10:56 am
Bella, your parents are truly inspiring!
tiffany says:
October 4, 2008, 3:53 pm
happy belated anniversary and many more! best wishes! very inspiring.
Tiffany says:
October 5, 2008, 11:48 am
Congrats to your parents
melissa says:
October 5, 2008, 6:46 pm
Congratulations!May you have 40 more!
FLO says:
October 7, 2008, 10:48 am
I celebrate your parents(mama and papa bella), this is what love is all about. I feel so encouraged reading this post. A blessing in troubled times.
WARRIOR11209 says:
October 7, 2008, 3:17 pm
Congratulations to your parents - may they have 40+ more yr together.
Nikki says:
October 7, 2008, 5:55 pm
Happy Anniversary! May I have the same type of luck one day!
SoFrolushes says:
October 8, 2008, 5:51 pm
40yrs wow. what a blessed union congrats to mama and papa bella. you two look stunning.
dhmeyers says:
October 10, 2008, 2:16 am
hysterical palin video!!!
Jennifer says:
October 10, 2008, 11:58 pm
Major Congrats on your 40 years of dedication to eachother. You are an inspiration to all those just starting out. To Mama Bella: The comment that you made to your daughter about Prayer,compromise, and prayer to go through with the compromise makes me want to cry. Reading that especially at this moment in my life really helps put things into perspective for me. I plan on using and putting into effect your wise words in my marriage. Hopefully I can celebrate 40 years also. Again, Happy 40 Year Anniversary. I wish you both 40 more.
muslimahlocs says:
October 14, 2008, 4:18 pm
when will their book be available in stores? congratulations to you and your family.
African Mango Reviews says:
January 10, 2011, 7:53 pm
Nice blog, looks really good. If you want to see it rank in Google though, you're going to need to build links.
Coco Cooks says:
September 28, 2011, 8:25 am
They look so beautiful! Glad they followed their hearts.
Ylorie Anderson says:
September 28, 2011, 8:27 am
Love! Indeed it makes the world go round. Congrats to your parents!!!
Calandra Branch says:
September 28, 2011, 8:29 am
Thank you SO much for sharing your parents' beautiful and inspiring story. They are a lovely couple and I wish them many more years. Happy Anniversary Mama and Papa Bella!!
feliciayvette says:
September 28, 2011, 8:34 am
Happy Anniversary to Mama and Papa Bella!!! High five for sticking through EVERYTHING together. I'm a newlywed and this is noooo joke! lol One can only hope to have lasting love like yours. Have a blessed day!
Katina Grays says:
September 28, 2011, 8:34 am
This post resonated so deeply with me! My parents also faced similar adversity in the early part of their marriage. And I am also the "surprise baby" that happened when they thought they were no longer able to have kids :-) What a lovely way to honor your parents 40th wedding anniversary! And they both look so beautiful. Sending peace, blessings, and light to you and your family!
Micaella says:
September 28, 2011, 10:03 am
Happy Anniversary, thank you for showing what hard work and love for each and looking to God can's to many many many more wonderful years and to the ultimate gift of selflessness......Love. Mica
IngeB says:
September 28, 2011, 10:53 am
Happy anniversary!! Glad to read about such a great example of love. :)
SOFnFREE says:
September 28, 2011, 12:34 pm
How lucky we are to have parents who love each other, love us, and we, them. What a great read, Patrice. -- Lisa
C Dawn Farrow says:
September 28, 2011, 12:47 pm
That is a beautiful story and very inspiring. My parents 40 years this past July! They didnt go through all the trials your folks went through but they too have weathered some storms that may have lead to a different ending if they werent so commited to loving and respecting one another. I want to have that and hope to have that. It is a beautiful thing! Congrats to you all!
Pamela says:
September 28, 2011, 2:09 pm
Happy Anniversary Mama & Papa Bella!! Thank you for being honest and inspirational! Your union wasn't the "norm" and you've both made it work for 40 years! I wish you both many more blissful years of marriage! God Bless!
Brown-eyed Girl says:
September 28, 2011, 3:10 pm
I am so inspired by Mama and Papa Bella's story! Thank you for sharing it with us, Patrice.
Nastassia Davis says:
August 24, 2012, 9:02 am
BEautiful parents and story. Love this about lasting love, "Prayers. And luck. Finding the right person has a lot to do with it, and most times people choose the wrong person. So there’s an element of luck. Marriage can be heaven or hell. But once you find the right person, you live a good life, and you pray, and you share everything the good and the bad, in sickness and in health – you good." My parents who've been married for 31 years say a lot of prayer go into it, too. Thank you for sharing, Patrice!
Millard says:
November 14, 2014, 3:43 am
There are complimentary E-cards with serious and uplifting mail messages and ones who are plain silly as well as funny. Send a credit card to yourself and see how it appears on the receiver's end. Want to tell your step-dad how glad you are he is your step-dad.
Roz says:
June 7, 2015, 5:02 pm
What an inspiring and lovely read!!! I'm seeing this site for the first time today and had to reply...came on it by accident from a friend of a friend of a friend profile...very rare sight for me and I am in my 40s! 99% of the Caribbean and Black marriages i've known and heard of throughout my life even when they've lasted for many years are plagued with infidelity! So heartwarming to read of a faithful marriage, a great example and from a couple from my homeland of Trinidad. 10thumbs up Mama and Papa Bella!!!!!!! You all make me smile inside out....God bless you with neverending love and faithfulness to Him and each other....shine on!!!!!