It’s been nearly five months since the tragic death of NBA great Kobe Bryant and his similarly talented daughter Gianna. Grief still lingers for their loved ones left behind however and recently, Vanessa Bryant was reminded of her tragic loss once more as she was forced to celebrate her own birthday without her late husband and daughter.
Still, despite their noted absence on her big day, Bryant was given an emotional surprise that, while bitter, seemed very sweet.
On May 5th, Bryant celebrated her birthday and shared a special surprise from her day on Instagram.
In a post to her Instagram page, Bryant revealed that before her birthday, she found an envelope addressed to her and from her late husband.
“Yesterday I found an envelope labeled To: The Love of my Life. From, Tu Papi I waited to open one more letter on my birthday. It gave me something to look forward to today. The irony is that Kobe had a photo of me drawn with an Angel holding me up by an artist on the cover. Missing the Love of my Life and my sweet little Mamacita- my fellow Taurus. Grateful to wake up to my 3 sweet girls today. Wish we were all together,” she wrote in the caption.
Bryant kept the message left behind for her private, but we can only imagine how emotional her experience in reading it was.
Bryant’s surprising post comes just a few days after she celebrated her deceased daughter Gigi’s birthday. In a caption about her birthday, Bryant encouraged Instagramers to “consider wearing red, caption an act of kindness or show how you will play Gigi’s way since she always gave everything she did her all and led with kindness.” She also asked fans to use the hashtag #PlayGigisWay to join in celebrating her daughter while also sharing an image of a special bracelet with her daughter’s nickname on it. “We are in the process of making this bracelet available for proceeds to benefit our Mamba and Mambacita foundation. I will update you with a post when we have them available for purchase),” she wrote.
When it comes to getting married, just about everyone has opinions and advice. Of course, while input on dos and don’ts of considering marriage can be overwhelming, they’re also so important to listen. Recently, we came across a Tweet by Twitter user @cxkenobxkery who posted a thread called “Don’t get married before…” We reposted the question and asked our FIERCE readers what advice they had for other Latinas who were considering marriage and the answers were pretty eye-opening.
So here goes, if you’re thinking about getting married consider pumping the breaks unless you’ve…
Worked out your parenting styles
Too strict? Too soft? Balance and teamwork is crucial. It comes down to what kid of little humans do you BOTH want to raise.” – ramfamfour
Discussed mental health stuff
“ANY mental health issues. My ex husband was not verbally or physically abusive, but his mental health issues were at the core of our marriages demise. I would also add to pay attention to how compatible you are when the ‘feeling’ of being in love isn’t tinting your glasses. He hated new foods and I loved to cook. He didn’t understand hyperbole, sarcasm, analogy, humor, etc. And those are all native to me. Otherwise, this is a great list.” – dinneronmylap
Learned how you plan to grow together
“I think asking how a person plans to continuously seek knowledge during their lifetime is important.” – lachullavida
Have underlined your boundaries
“Speak about the boundaries you plan on having with your families as you create one of your own. TRUST ME, you don’t want a spouse who doesn’t know or understand how important this is. Nobody wants their in laws overstepping. If their parents or yours are doing this now, it will only get worse once you are married and it will create so much drama. People have divorced over this.” – taialvarez
Talked about credit scores
“And CREDIT SCORE, family health history, twins?”- liani9
Seen them when they’re angry
“Other tips: See how this person reacts when angry, see how this person treats strangers, see how this person faces a difficult dilemma. This will tell you a lot about a person.” –mariar09_
Have self-appreciation on both sides
“Don’t get married before you truly know, love and have appreciation for yourself.”- moni.gram
Know their family
“You absolutely need to know about family, how they were raised and around who… she’s wrong on that one.”- your_phoenix_
Have the age experience
“Don’t even THINK about it until you’re in your 30s.” – arlee_la
“Parenting / disciplining! Questions about in laws expectations. Alone time vs quality time – are you someone who needs a lot of time away or close to your partner? How fairly do you fight? How did your parents fight growing up? How do you negotiate with one another?” – melmor
Lived on your own
“The best thing I did for myself: Live away from family. I had a whole year to live with roommates and I learned so mhch about myself. If at all possible, consider doing this!!!” – dj_enamoured
Asked how their prior relationship ended
“Always ask how the prior relationship ended, been almost marry for 5 years and I never asked and I found out that he got 7 women pregnant and all of them got an abortion, also ask about mental health issues with the family I never did and found out his mother was bipolar without treatment now I know why he is the way he is cause he is bipolar… I thought things would changed but nothing has changed and don’t marry a men that has a lot of guy friends cause his priority are his friends… Yes I know don’t need to tell me to get divorce I m already working on it.” – suequte_yoginyc
Figured out how to spend time alone and apart
“Date/Outing expectations – is one a home-body vs outdoorsy? This made for some very uncomfortable situations for both if us in a prior relationship. Would lead to full on arguments. But if both aren’t comfortable with group dates or don’t consider a quiet dinner at home as romantic then someone is going to become resentful.” – rosanam1978
Been genetically tested
“On having children, it best to get a gene-carrier (gene disease testing) before marriage. It makes me so angry when hearing that married couple… MARRRIED, do it after marriage. What if both of them are carriers? Then having a kid with their gene disease is on its way, if they have 1 biological.” – officialdarlin
In her latest music video for “Cardigan”, Taylor Swift wore a cream cable-knit sweater that had gray stars on the elbows. Soon after she revealed that she was selling copies of the sweater on her website, fans went crazy. As part of the promotion for her new album “Folklore” Swift has been sending out replicas of the sweater to celebrities like Jennifer Hudson to promote its release. The album launched last Friday and has already sold more than 1.3 million copies worldwide according to Variety.
And while the replica cardigans might be selling fast, Swift made sure to send a very special one to Kobe Bryant’s eldest daughter Natalia.
Swift gave Natalia a replica of the cardigan she wore in the music video.
“Thank you SO much @taylorswift,” Natalia wrote in a post to her Instagram story over the weekend with a photo of her wearing the cardigan. “I am OBSESSED with ‘folklore’!!!”
The Bryants have long been supporters of Swift over the years.
Kobe Bryant joined Swift onstage during two of her Staples Center performances. Once for her “1989” tour in 2015 and another time in 2018. Back when the singer went on her “Reputation” tour, she posed alongside the Bryants including (Kobe’s late daughter Gigi) backstage.