By: Victoria Clark
Love. It is the four letter word that we strive to find in this world of constant chaos, but which proves to be a difficult feat for many of us. Therefore, if and when we do find true love, we must be smart enough to hold onto it and fight for it, even if it means taking crazy risks and making life altering choices. After all, not many people are lucky enough to find the real thing, so when we do, we must never let it go.
A couple that perfectly embodies the force and power of love is Pania Rose and Thaddeus O’Neil. Sure, they may seem like a picture perfect couple from the outside, but once you get to know them, you begin to believe in true love all over again. From the moment this model saw her fashion designer husband on a photoshoot in Australia, they knew the love game was all over.
Not only are Pania and Thad two of the nicest, kindest, and most passionate individuals, they are even better versions of themselves when they are together, which is what true love is all about.
Read below to get your love fix from two of our favorites:
COUPLES WE LOVE | PANIA ROSE & THADDEUS O’NEIL
Every couple has a story…what’s yours?
Pania: We met on a photo shoot in 2003. It was my first underwear campaign for a brand called Bonds which is like the Australian version of Hanes – so lovely cotton, sporty stuff, not sexy lingerie. Thad had walked onto set to meet the photographer and I noticed him immediately because he was insanely handsome. But also because he was very respectful on set and kept his eyes averted. I was smitten. This happened a month before I was about to fly to NYC for the first time. He had created a life for himself in Australia over 7 years, in fact he had just gotten his residency. But when we met, he threw it all out the window and jumped on a plane to be with me in NYC. We got married a year later. Everybody thought we were crazy. We were crazy! We were completely in love and there was no doubt!. It’s been nearly 14 years now.
Thad: We met in Sydney, Australia on a job. It was love at first sight. When our elbows finally glanced by the kitchen sink and those little hairs stood on end, it was all over. A few key electrons jumped ship and we’ve been all mixed up ever since.
Each of you has such a busy schedule. How do you find time for being together?
Pania: In our early years together, despite intense travel schedules, we never spent more than a week apart as a strict rule. We live very hectic & social lives during the week and then weekends are just for us. Family time. We disappear out to Long Island and relax at our cottage, enjoy the beautiful nature of our garden and local area. We’ve missed many a weekend social event just to claim that precious and restorative space for ourselves. It’s so important and I think one of the secrets to our marriage. Each of us have reclusive tendencies so it’s the most natural thing to be home together, side by side, each doing their own thing. If we haven’t spent enough time together, we miss each other fiercely & one of us will demand time. Thankfully, the other is always happy to oblige.
Thad: Enjoying the simple closeness of domesticity for one thing, just being near each other in our home. We may be and often are doing quite our own thing but the physical proximity is profoundly sweet. And then laying in bed with a film or talking late into the night, our son Cas nestled between us, it is heaven.
What do you both do to recharge?
Pania: Thad’s ultimate recharge is surfing so we try to get him out of town on a few surf trips every year. I am blessed with my job that I’m on location jobs a couple of times a month and get to spend nights in hotels with a crisp king bed all to myself and a television (which we don’t have at home) Its such a treat!
Thad: Surfing or failing the cooperation of the ocean, a long walk with my dogs along the bay or in the woods. And reading, lots of reading.
What’s your perfect Date Night?
Pania: Thad and I will meet after work, babysitter booked and walk down the street, arms draped around each other ready to have a flirt across the table at a restaurant or bar in our neighborhood. Thursday nights are our favorite nights. In the summer, Thad’s Mom (bless her) will take our son Cas (who is 4yrs old) overnight for a sleepover at grandma’s house so we can have some precious time alone. We’ll pack up dinner and take our boat over to Fire Island to grill and picnic at sunset. The ride home we’ll be a little bit tipsy and filled with love for nature, the water & each other. Those evenings have been some of our most perfect dates.
Thad: See above.
How would you say you compliment each other, or balance each other out?
Pania: Thad is confident, spontaneous, fun, cheeky and funny. With a studious side & love of books that is very attractive. I joke that he is the older brother I never had because he’s always stirring me up and saying outrageous things to shock me or make me laugh. He comes up with these crazy ideas and I’m the calm, practical one whose like, “hold up, lets think this through a bit” He’s the one who then proves to me that his crazy ideas aren’t so crazy after all! We are both very positive and supportive of each other. We also can’t help ourselves and love a good argue & make-up. We talk a lot…calling each other many times a day to chat & check in. We are grateful & strong as a couple and know that it is because of the little family we have created (and our truly wonderful circle of friends) that we thrive in NYC.
Thad: Pania is organized and practical. I’m spontaneous and oblivious. Together we manage to have and survive many adventures.
How do you inspire each other?
Pania: I love Thad’s natural confidence, strength and energy. He can walk into any room, any setting and be completely at ease. He is warm and friendly to everyone. He inspires me to have fun, be relaxed and enjoy life.
Thad: As saccharine and Hallmark as it sounds, Pania inspires me to be a better person just being who she is.
Favorite moment together?
Pania: There are so many but one was the first time I ever told him I loved him. We had taken a bike ride to the bay and were looking over the water. I got all quiet and serious & turned to him with a low voice “I have something important to tell you…” When I said it he just started laughing so hard. Then we got on our bicycles and he started singing “she loves me! She loves me!” at the top of his voice with no hands on the bars whizzing down the road. It was truly a jubilant moment that I’ll never forget.
Thad: Holding our son together for the first time was fairly exceptional. He was born at home in our bedroom, The perfect unbroken, simple grandeur of that moment is high on the list.
What is your favorite thing about each other?
Pania: His laugh, his long lanky legs, his stride and his sexy dimples. I have a HUGE crush on him still and often catch myself checking him out. He is one gorgeous hubby!
Thad: Her naturalness and caring, her womanliness
Photo credits: Oliver Pilcher Photography