Let me share with you a love story that will move and inspire you.
It was pleasantly bright and slightly warmer than usual in Coonoor on 6th May 1982. An unsuspecting, coy and simple young girl was going to take a step that would change her comfortable, cosy life forever. Her beautiful thick, black hair flowed below her waist and a friend braided it for her with fresh, fragrant mogra flowers. There was a tangible knot in her stomach. She didn’t even know the man she was going to wed today. She just knew she felt an unusual peace about what she was doing. She came out of her house fully dressed and looked at her father’s face. He looked pleased and smiled at her. He had raised his oldest daughter well. She trusted him and he was proud of her. She took one last look at the smiling flowers in her garden and left for the church with her family.
Waiting at the end of the altar for her was this strange man she hardly knew. He was thin, dark and good looking. He had a thick moustache and a carefree vibe about him. He was from Bombay and she was to travel back with him to this massive city she had only heard tall tales about. The thought petrified her but when she saw him smile at her, she knew she was going to be okay. They said their vows and pledged to be with each other for better and for worse.
That’s not the end. That wasn’t a love story. That was just a STORY. What followed for the next thirty-seven years is LOVE.
He gave up drinking alcohol and slowly gave up smoking too. For her, he was willing to change. What didn’t change though was how he made her laugh every day. He made up songs about things that she worried about. He worked hard to make sure he could protect and support her. He took her for long walks in the evenings and bought her trinklets from roadside shops.
She happily made his tiny 200 sq. ft. room into a beautiful home. She made curtains out of old sarees, made wallpaper with magazine covers, sewed frills onto cushion covers, and filled her home with flowers. She was the queen of DIY when that term didn’t even exist. She made friends with neighbours and learned to make pleasantries with them in Hindi. She’d wait for him to come back from work. He was her ONLY friend.
They didn’t have much material wealth and, on some days, they had nothing. But even on those days, they had God and each other and that was enough.
Together they couldn’t wait to have a family and not before long, they had their first child, a daughter and few years later, a son. They looked at their children and couldn’t believe how they were so much like them. They didn’t have elaborate parenting journals to fall back on or the internet to browse when they had challenges. They just winged it.
She taught her children to read. She taught them to be kind. She made her little home a haven for them. She smacked them when they got on her nerves, which was quite often. She’d discipline them but also write little notes to them telling them she loved them. She poured Rasna into ice trays to make flavoured ice cubes for them. She told them stories from the Bible each night and taught them how to pray. They wouldn’t always be this close to her, she knew. But she spent every ounce of energy doing special things for them.
He came home each evening to his children and never once let them see the fatigue from his toil. He tickled them, played with them and made them laugh till they cried. He took them to the Byculla zoo on Saturdays in a double-decker bus. If he had only ten rupees, he bought them ice cream and lied to them that he didn’t want any. He took them for walks in the evenings and taught them to ride cycles that were taken on rent — 5 rupees for one hour. He sang songs to them, all sorts of songs — most of them he just made up.
They both made sacrifices for their children every day. Sacrifices their children would never know they had made. They did everything they could to make sure their children did everything they wanted to.
They were a team.
They became the infamous Leslies.
They started a culture that became infectious. A culture of loving people unconditionally, having an open home with lots of food in it. A culture of giving whatever is there to whomever needs it without thinking about tomorrow. A culture of not holding back anything and working really hard for everything. A culture of singing and playing games and laughing so hard that you cry. A culture of praying together and reading the Bible. A culture so strong that it won’t fade away through posterity. It will live on.
It’s 6th May today, thirty seven years since the day they got married.
He is almost 70 and she is 60, but they both look much younger. He hasn’t stopped making her laugh, she hasn’t stopped taking care of him. They both haven’t stopped making sacrifices for their children.
Their children are married too now and want to know the secret to their parents’ marriage. Turns out it is no secret at all — they just never gave up.
TessPosted on May 6, 2019 at 3:01 pm
Such a beautiful story that turned into a still more beautiful love story !!! I love the two stories they produced too ! Definitely master pieces !!! Those who have met them know there is a soild foundation to their marriage !!! Great Becky ! I wish them years and years of togetherness love and laughter !!! God bless them and you all abundantly!!!
JuliyanaPosted on May 6, 2019 at 3:16 pm
Baby… You brought back beautiful memories..
Memories sure are treasures no one or nothing can steal…
Thanks my baby… Love you 😘😍❤️🤗
Melita PintoPosted on May 6, 2019 at 3:45 pm
So beautifully penned Becky
Shiba RodriguesPosted on May 6, 2019 at 3:46 pm
Amazing. Well written. Living life simple and at its best. The mantra for today is “never give up” !!!
JacobPosted on May 6, 2019 at 4:45 pm
Awesome chinks. So true..
JacobPosted on May 6, 2019 at 4:46 pm
Awesome chinks. So true..
Felicia JayakarPosted on May 7, 2021 at 10:25 am
Very beautifully narrated.I salute you for the love you have for your parents.
TharaPosted on May 6, 2019 at 5:34 pm
Wow.. Awesome… Really touched by their story.. Really blessed to read!!! Love to Uncle & Aunty😘😘
Daphney FernandesPosted on May 6, 2019 at 10:18 pm
Amazing Becky. Makes us fall in love with them too. God bless this amazing couple and let lords light shine on them forever. It all ends with one line they walked with the lord always that’s the beauty of their love story.
DaisyPosted on May 7, 2019 at 4:05 am
Wow!! I cant hold back my tears….so much love that we got from Juliana Akka!! And yes i remember that 200sq ft house….probably my first demo on how beautiful and inviting a house could be….those egg shells turned into beautiful accessories to accompany the flowers…..those wall papered walls…!! And Rebecca…ur upper deck….indeed some beautiful memories….God bless you Leslie anna and Juliana Akka…you’ve been an inspiration 😘😘❤❤❤
Vasanthi MuraliPosted on May 7, 2019 at 6:39 am
Beautifully written Becky… They are a blessing…Wishing them many more years of togetherness…
ReenaPosted on May 7, 2019 at 8:20 am
So beautifully written .. Their life truly reflects every word that is written here. We are Very blessed to have Uncle and Aunty in our lives. So much to learn from them and from their walk of love in God. God bless both of them and the entire family immensely.
Arleen TerryPosted on May 7, 2019 at 1:32 pm
Loved it to the fullest !! Thanks for sharing this beautiful relationship thats a miracle at every step which is very rare to be found these days. They have been so pure and devoted and more over achieving the goals of what they promised each other for lifelong. Praising God for your family <3
May the name of the Lord forever be praised !!
Reet SaraogiPosted on May 9, 2019 at 9:59 am
I went into imagining each and every scene that you have penned down so beautifully…they are such an adorable couple…You are one special family!!!
Valerie SalwayPosted on May 6, 2020 at 4:52 am
Joyful and Glorious Anniversary Lesley and your Bride! What a Team you both are! Invincible!
God’s Rich Blessings on Both of You, Lesley and Julianna!
beckyleepearsonPosted on May 6, 2020 at 5:19 pm
SalmaPosted on May 6, 2020 at 9:14 am
This is so lovely becky. Their life has always been an inspiration
beckyleepearsonPosted on May 6, 2020 at 5:19 pm
Chitra MascarenhasPosted on May 6, 2021 at 10:55 am
There is so much we can learn from them. Walking with God, never giving up n prayer is something I have witnessed so closely….They have been a blessing to us n many….God bless uncle and aunty with long healthy life n may all their desires cone true….
Stephen SamsPosted on May 6, 2021 at 1:48 pm
Well said!!! God bless you all
Christopher KanagarajPosted on May 7, 2021 at 1:27 am
Best gift a parent can get…. Beautiful
Catherine DiasPosted on May 7, 2021 at 4:32 am
Wow. Yes you are inspiration and light. Continue to radiate . God bless you in your endeavours. We love you !