How We Met
We met my first day at college when I moved into the dorms at UCSB – Pratish was my Resident Assistant (RA)! He was the cool senior with a charming smile that my freshman self, had a huge crush on. We were friends that first year and he ironically would ask me for girl advice. After my freshman year, we dated casually for the next 4 years but we were never in a serious relationship although loved each other very much. Pratish even said to me one night, “you need to know you will never be my girlfriend.” He kept his distance since he ultimately “needed to marry an Indian girl.”
Eventually, we ended things for good, or so I thought. After a 9 month break, he came back into my life. He had told his family about me and wanted to make us work regardless of the expectations people had (and that he had himself) of who his partner should be. When he came back 3 years ago, I knew we were in it for the long haul! Now we are happily engaged and even have a joint Instagram handle @thehinjewcouple. We love meeting other interracial couples on social media and hope we can inspire others to be with whomever they love. <3
how they asked
For a few weeks, Pratish had told me he had a work party on a Sunday evening that plus ones were invited to. I wasn’t thrilled to be going to this party but put myself together and Uber pooled to the JW Mariott in Santa Monica. The Uber driver happened to be Indian and had Indian songs playing which is funny to look back on as it was foreshadowing what was about to happen.
When I arrived, the front desk escorted me upstairs to where the refreshment hour was being held. There was signage for the “CAA party” as we walked to the suite and they knocked on the door. No one answered, and I began to think I was in the wrong room. The hotel staff got a key and opened the door where I peaked in and saw a sign that read “Hinjew Historical Museum.” Pratish had left a note for me to read along with having large photos of us on the wall and sweet notes under each. The room was covered in candles and roses but I didn’t notice any of this, I was so excited and ran outside to where he was waiting inside a heart made of rose petals on the balcony overlooking the ocean.
After he popped the question, he told me we would surprise my parents that next weekend when we saw them in Kansas where we were going to visit my grandparents. I was totally bummed that they weren’t there but at that moment my parents and my whole family along with Pratish’s ran out onto the balcony.
I was so excited to be able to share the news with my grandparents that next weekend in person. A long time ago I had asked my Jewish grandma (who was raised Orthodox) if I had to marry a Jewish man and she said, “I just want you to be with whoever makes you happy.” Pratish makes me happy =)