Photo courtesy of Melissa Dooley Photography
A New York transplant plus two ballet dancers and a true friendship. I smell a beautiful love story! Let's set the stage!
In the summer of 2013, a beautiful ballerina, Carolina, relocated from New York City to Birmingham to join the Alabama Ballet. Enter Frederick Rocas (Derek), the handsome fella that would eventually sweep her off her feet, literally!
In need of furniture, one of the first people Carolina would meet moving to her new city was Derek; who sold her a bed and is one of the main dancers with the Alabama Ballet. "We instantly became good friends", Carolina recounts. However, Carolina admits feeling "a little intimidated by him at first." Thankfully, those feelings did not last long and a genuine friendship began to develop. "He was always very nice to me and always made me feel comfortable around him." Over time that friendship gradually turned into a romance. According to Carolina, "we started dating before we really knew we were dating...friendship became love without notice."
Carolina admits Derek "stole my heart over time." With the stress of life and pressure of outside forces, the key is knowing "he's my best friend. There's no better feeling in the world than to know that you're marrying your best friend. I always felt so happy and comfortable when I'm with him." These confessions make it clear to Carolina that Derek is "the one".
Although Carolina may have felt it, Derek was the first to profess his love for her at a New Year's Eve party. It came "out of the blue", Carolina reports, "I actually didn't say it back until weeks later."
With a love story of filled with wonderful memories together, one that seems to be the fondest for Carolina involves ballet. Carolina and Derek were able to dance together with the Alabama Ballet's performance of the ballet Coppelia. "I love dancing with him...we don't get to do it often, so that was a lot of fun."
Their time spent together involves lots of cooking (and eating) and visiting the local dog park with their dog, Marzi. However, we believe it wouldn't matter what they were doing as long as they were doing it together. According to Carolina, "we love being together more than anything. We respect each other..., I know he's got my back and he knows I got his."
This proved true on the night of the proposal. After what Carolina recounts as a "wonderful but simple dinner at home", Derek amusingly began joking about asking her to marry him with a crochet ring made of pink yarn. Derek began to size her finger with the yarn and he "told me he had a small box that he could place the crochet ring" in. He proceeded to get the box and upon his return, "he got down on one knee, opened the box" and asked Carolina to marry him. Being completely surprised and not expecting " that anything special would happen that night", Carolina recalls with pure joy, "I saw the most beautiful rose gold ring a girl could ask for." And, of course, "I said YES!" Simply agreeing to a life time of togetherness!
Carolina dreams of a wedding day that is "special and fun." A laid back, romantic themed wedding filled with "lots of greenery, ivory, light pink peonies and a touch of lilac" will be held on August 4th, 2017 at the Historic Rucker Place here in Birmingham. After nearly two years together, Carolina reports she "can't wait to marry my best friend! I'm looking forward to spending our special day with the people that are closet to us, having some great food and dancing the night away."
Dance on! Together. Here's to The Beginning!
Photos courtesy of Melissa Dooley Photography