Nina Ceves is the indie published author of several romance novels. Find out more at www.ninaceves.com and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ninacevesromancenovels.

How did you meet, and how did you know this relationship was special?

I was a bridesmaid in a wedding. He was in the wedding band. The rest is history! Our love story. I remember sitting with my friends, and feeling as though someone were looking at me. You know that feeling? I turned, and saw him. At that point, I did not know he was in the band. I thought he must be someone’s boyfriend. I looked away. I felt so flustered, I actually got up, went to the bar for a glass of water, and went outside. He followed me. I made a joke. He laughed. I was only twenty-two years old with no interest in falling in love, and it happened right then. When I went home that night, I couldn’t make sense of it. But, I didn’t want to. I just knew. And every moment of that summer, as we first got to know one another, I could see what an incredibly special person he is.

Do you feel that you’re connected on a soul level?

one month standYes. It is something inexplicable. I feel that my love for my husband will last forever, that our souls are timeless and so our love is timeless. In one of my novels, One Month Stand, the character Theo describes how he felt, the moment he met Ever, who is the woman he has fallen in love with:

“From the moment I met you, I felt there was a magnet within me, undiscovered until you walked up to me, asking if I wanted cake. The magnet drew me to you; I felt you had an answering shard within you, and they were pulling us together, to meet at the heart. Every moment since then, that pull grows stronger. For me. I love, I love the light and dark of you…”

What passions do you share?

We have a passion for laughter. I don’t know why, but we make each other laugh so much. I tell him things that happen to me, or thoughts I have, and he laughs so hard. I feel as though I can share whatever quirky thing passes through my thoughts and he just *gets* it. He gets me. I think he is extremely funny and he cracks me up, just with his take on the world, his experiences, and how he relates them so comically.

Creativity is another shared passion. We both value it tremendously. My husband has always encouraged me to make time to write, and is so happy for me, so sincerely happy for me, that I’m now publishing, sharing what I’m writing. He is an incredibly gifted musician and I see how hard he works at it, and how much joy it brings him.

Tell us about one of the most soulful experiences you’ve had together.

One time, in the Sierras, we stretched on the ground, staring up at the sky as night fell. Then, bats started flying overhead. They were so beautiful, silhouetted against the twilight. Somehow, it was such a still, lovely moment, full of wonder, and I was so glad it was just the two of us together sharing it.

Dreaming Silas

Truly, nothing can compare to meeting our child for the first time. That morning, before sunrise, felt holy. The two of us together and then the three of us. My husband made up a song for our child on the spot. I’ll never forget it.

How do you benefit from being in your relationship?

My husband helps me be the best version of myself and he says the same of me. He challenges me, gently. He protects me. He cares for me. He puts my happiness before his. I know he would lay down his life for me, in a heartbeat. That kind of love and loyalty? I’ll never take it for granted. It blows me away. And I give it right back.

Our child sees that she has two parents who love one another deeply and love her unconditionally.

Do you feel that you have a shared purpose for being together?

I love this question, and I wish I knew. I wonder if that will be revealed over time. My husband and I both value kindness, and we try to practice that, if that doesn’t sound weird, in any interaction that it is possible to do so.

What challenge have you faced together, and how did you find your way through them?

Illness, deaths, losses: life has its challenges, its ups and downs. I have had to learn to share my feelings and ask for the kind of help that I needed from my husband. He had to learn to be there for me when he could not fix things. We’ve learned so, so much about how to be there for each other. He knows I am beside him, no matter what. And I know he is with me, too. That connection means so much, there are barely words to describe the depth of my gratitude and appreciation for that.

What are you learning in your relationship right now?

I am learning how lucky, how blessed I am and just to savor that. I am learning how in love I am — the depth of that connection — and always will be. I am learning that a relationship can grow even better and better.

How do you keep your connection strong?

Shared laughter, heart to heart talks, wordless touches and looks . . . and I flirt outrageously, but only with my husband.

ninaIf you’ve read The Soulmate Experience, what ideas or suggestions have been most helpful to you? 

The entire book is highlighted, practically! There are so many insightful and practical ways of looking at growing closer, I loved it. If I had to choose just one, I would say: invitation instead of expectation. I loved the way that has helped me look at a few things in my relationship with my husband. Well, I can’t just pick one, so I’ll also add: how would this be if I were coming from a place of love? That has helped me so much, too. Oh, and just one more: the concept of the honored guest. That’s so beautiful and so true. These three examples are just amazingly helpful and practical but they go to a very deep, spiritual level. They have truly helped me become a better wife to my husband if that doesn’t sound too dorky…

What advice can you offer other couples to help them keep their connection strong?

Don’t be scared. Or, be scared. Go ahead, but don’t stop connecting, trying, reaching out, being brave, expressing yourself. Being vulnerable can be scary, and true love has a way of making you face your innermost fears. Don’t shut down, don’t start to skim on the surface of routine and responsibilities.

What advice can you offer single people who desire a relationship like yours?

Believe that its out there. Believe that you deserve it, because you do.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?

I just have to merely think about kissing my husband and I get butterflies. We’ve been together over twenty years. I love him more every day.

With so much love in my soul, how could I not write romance novels, full of tenderness, heat, awkward vulnerability, tears, and laughter?

Thank you, Nina, for sharing your love story with us! ~Mali & Joe, authors of The Soulmate Experience: A Practical Guide to Creating Extraordinary Relationships52 Prescriptions for Happiness, and the upcoming book The Soulmate Lover, and creators of Mantras for Making Love