Nikita and Sean Michael

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How We Met

The year was 2013 and the sounds of Avicii were sweeping the land. Argo had just won Best Picture. The Baltimore Ravens had just won their second Super Bowl in glorious fashion, beating the San Francisco 49ers 34-31 (despite a blackout in the stadium conspicuously delaying the game). Like any good love story, this one began on a cold winter’s night in New York’s East Village. Sean, 22 at the time, was watching basketball and was tired of waiting for his roommates to finish pregaming. I, 23 at the time, was looking for somewhere to continue the festivities after a boozy DJ brunch with my girls. As fate would have it, the two of us would decide to spend our evenings at a high end establishment known as The 13th Step.

The 13th Step is known for being packed at 4am and hosting the finest Dollar Beer Tuesday’s in all of NYC, the city that truly never sleeps. Sean and his NYU friends went there so much that they were basically greeted like Norm from Cheers every time they stepped inside. And so it went on that fateful night, Sean posted up at his usual spot, not knowing that a striking young girl (aka me!), singing to Taylor Swift, would wander over to his table and change his life forever.

Sean and I connected immediately. I sipped my beer, smiling as always while Sean belted out some A$AP Rocky to me. As the night wound down, the two of us exchanged numbers and planned a date to go see Argo the next day. I remember telling my friends that I thought I met my “dream boy.”

The problem was, our texts would go ignored. Or so we thought. I messaged Sean later that afternoon saying I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to make our date and asked to reschedule. But I got no response. So I waited a day. Then another. In the meantime, Sean randomly added me on Facebook. “Who adds someone on Facebook but doesn’t reply to their text?!,” I speculated with my friends. But I was using an old Blackberry because I had recently lost my 5th phone of the year (remember, we’re barely through February at this point). The following weekend, my best friend advised me to restart it (having the same issues), and wouldn’t you know it — I suddenly got a text from Sean. We met up later that evening and realized none of our messages were going through. We had texted each other all week — no one was ghosted after all! We laughed at the possibility that we could have never met up again but were both so happy we did.

Sean later told me that hours before he met me, he wandered out to the rooftop of his apartment on a beautiful winter day. Something was in the air that he couldn’t quite describe. A positive energy. A feeling he couldn’t shake. He took a picture of the Empire State Building and captioned it “a beautiful afternoon in Manhattan.” I, even today, have this picture from 2/17/2013 framed in our home which Sean gifted me on our 6-month anniversary.

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How They Asked

After over 7 years together, from making memories living in New York City, to moving to Los Angeles into our first apartment together so we could follow our dreams of working in the entertainment industry, to traveling all over the world including Japan, Germany, the UK, and Bermuda… we decided to plan a trip to Lund, Sweden, to my hometown and where I was born.

Sweden has always held a very special place in my heart and I was so excited to finally bring Sean there. I was only 6 when I moved away from Lund so I would often share stories of growing up in my house in my small little town, so that was of course our first stop. We got to my old house and as I was taking pictures, I realized Sean was no longer standing next to me. I turned around to see Sean standing there with the most beautiful ring in the world. On December 18th, 2019, he asked for my future in the place where I showed him my past.

Sean later told me that his proposal practically wrote itself and he knew the moment we got serious that he was going to ask me to marry him outside of my childhood home. Our journey has been — one could say — a magic carpet ride. And it’s only just getting started.

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Special Thanks

Jordan Kubat
 | Photographer