We were set up on a date by a mutual friend on Memorial Day weekend 2011. When we asked our mutual friend why he set us up on a date, he said it was because we have similar values. We came to realize that our common values stem from our families. We were both taught to have respect for our parents, grandparents and the elders in our community and to be role models for the younger generations. Our parents also instilled in us the importance of kindness, forgiveness, being supportive of our family and friends, and reaching for our dreams.
We got married on June 8, 2013 in Northern California in Erick’s hometown of Sonoma. Many of Maricela’s family members came all the way from south Texas for the wedding. We are now one big family with friends and relatives from Texas, California, Canada, Mexico and other parts of the world.
We currently live in Oakland, California, which is across the bridge from San Francisco and within proximity to the majority of Erick’s family. Maricela’s family is in Texas, and there will be annual trips to visit them. Maricela’s family speaks Spanish, and we will teach our children to speak both English and Spanish. We have friends from various parts of the world, and our friends will reinforce the importance of accepting different types of people and cultures.
Erick is so much fun! He sings and dances at home and gets me to sing and dance too. My Dad passed away 8 months before I met Erick, and Erick has comforted me when I miss my Dad and family back in Texas. Erick will be a wonderful father as the love and kindness he has shown me will also be provided to our child.
One of the many things I love about Erick is his large and accepting family. His parents divorced when he was little but made an effort to put family first. This effort resulted in Erick’s family growing to include 4 brothers, 2 stepsisters, 3 nieces, 2 nephews, 1 sister-in-law and 4 parents (2 parents and 2 stepparents). Erick reflects the commitment and acceptance he has learned and has embraced my family and culture.
Maricela is beautiful, loving, loyal, committed, humble, fun and faithful. One of the things I admire about her is how she carries forward her ancestral and cultural heritage and lives out that heritage on a daily basis. Maricela grew up in South Texas near the Gulf Coast with her mom, dad and 2 sisters. She is a product of her Mexican-American community, and it’s an honor to experience that way of life alongside her. Maricela carries who she is and where she’s from everywhere she goes.
Maricela worked very hard to earn a college degree and highly values education. She is committed to supporting our children’s pursuit of their academic and artistic goals. She loves to read and I know she’ll enjoy reading stories to our child, teaching them how to paint and draw, and helping out with homework when they come home from school. Maricela really enjoys traveling back home to South Texas and being surrounded by her big family. Our child will be able to experience these trips and feel the true love and joy these experiences create.
Maricela has a real appreciation for simple things like a beautiful prayer, a clean home, a good meal, or a sunny day. She will be a wonderful, caring parent and any child would be blessed to have Maricela as a mother.