A Story Of Love & Determination In The Midst Of Beirut Devastation

@luvabistrobar | Rayan Aouad

The lives of the Lebanese have changed ever since the explosion. Plans for the future, near or far, were disrupted, homes were destroyed, families were broken, and much more miseries, including shattered dreams and hope.

But, at it appears emerging in the midst of devastation, the determination of the Lebanese youth to believe in their country and rebuild it is stronger. So is love.

This young Lebanese man, who lost tremendously in the blast, just went ahead and proposed to the love of his life. In normal times, a proposal comes with the question Will you marry me? and the expressed intention to “build” a life together.

This one, though, was different, profound, and so indicative of the times Lebanon is living.

It spoke of “rebuilding the future” together.

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And so the construction begins..

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On the doomsday of August 4th, Rayan Aouad was with his friends in Beirut planning for the proposal that would take place the next day in Ryan’s new bistro-bar in Gemayzeh, Luva.

“The sad truth is that I was going to propose on Aug 5th in Luva privately with a romantic dinner. Then, we would celebrate our engagement in a rooftop in downtown with our friends,” Rayan told the961

But, the mighty explosion disrupted his perfect wedding proposal… and destroyed his Luva Bistro Bar, his Va et Vient mini-market in Karantina, his parents’ house, and his home-to-be with his girlfriend.

Anyone in Rayan’s situation would have given up or at least postponed his wedding plans. But he didn’t, even though his two businesses were totally destroyed.

“After the explosion, I knew I wanted to continue my life with the woman who has been with me through every step of the way. This near-to-death experience made me determined, now more than ever, to ask my girlfriend to rebuild our dreams together,” Rayan told The961

Rebuilding our dreams…

A powerful indication that there is more to the Lebanese youth than coping with the disaster. There is a strong determination to prevail, to rebuild, to work for their future, and to live and prosper in their country and for their country.

They are not giving up. Rayan is not giving up. And, his beloved Lutchiana is not giving up. She said yes.

If there’s anything that we’ve learned from this catastrophe is to hold the people we love close to our hearts, now more than ever.

While we see nothing but misery and pain in the media, it is important in these depressing times to highlight the good happening. We certainly need plenty of it, and all that can come on our way.

Photo credit: Rayan Aouad

Rayan and Lutchiana’s story is indeed empowering. It inspires us to search for the light in the darkness of grief and despair immersing Lebanon these days.