Imagine that you're in the process of starting a new life! You've found your soulmate. You proposed and she accepted. Now you're ready to live happily ever after. But then, life throws a wrench in your plans and gives you a horrible disease. That's what happened to Hisashi Nakahara, 34, and his bride to be, 32-year-old Mai. A brain disease had robbed Mai of her memories of her future husband Hisashi, but he was definitely not willing to give up on her. And if you thought that the tale of Cinderella and Prince Charming was romantic, wait until you hear the one about Mai and Hisashi.
They spent so much time together that it only made sense that they would eventually get married. They had scheduled their wedding in Okayama for March 2007. The couple had dated for a year before Hisashi popped the question in July 2006.
She was not only using a strange voice, but had apparently lost her short-term memory as well, which prompted the couple to go to the hospital. But the doctors couldn't figure out what was causing Mai's symptoms.
She was eventually transferred to the Okayama University Hospital in Japan. After months of research, doctors assumed that Mai had contracted Anti-NMDA receptor encephalitis, an auto-immune disease that attacks the brain.
Doctors began the appropriate medical treatments and her condition slowly improved. She even reacted to the voices of those closest to her.
By the spring of 2011, she was discharged from the hospital and by the time she was home, she was able to recognize members of her family. But there was one person that she was unable to recall, and it was the most important person in her life, her fiancé.
"Why is he always here?" That was the question that crept into her mind every time she saw him. It wasn't until she saw the words "wedding ceremony" written in her pocketbook for the date March 11, 2007, that she asked if she was married.
Eventually, Mai realized that Hisashi was her one and only. By June 2014, the couple called the wedding hall and rescheduled the ceremony that had been on hold for eight long years. Ai Kubota, the hall's wedding planner, couldn't believe it when he heard from the couple.
After getting permission from the couple, the wedding hall operator posted the video of the ceremony on YouTube with the title: 8-negoshi no Kekkonshiki, which translates to wedding ceremony over eight years. The video has been seen over 640,000 times so far.
Mai was so grateful for the fact that Hisashi was willing to wait for her for the last eight years. The two ended up finally getting hitched on Okayama, on December 21, 2014.
He found the thought of walking away from Mai's side to be unimaginable. And as he watched her recovering slowly but surely, it gave him hope that this day would finally come.
Now that Mai Nakahara is heading back to the hospital and Hisashi will be right at her side. But don't worry. Her memories aren't on the fritz again. They're about to have a new addition to their nest when she gives birth to their first child.
**You better have a hanky handy when you watch this trailer of the film, "The 8-Year Engagement," 2017. You'll also get an inside peek into the lives, struggles, and joys of the real-life Mai and Hisashi Nakahara.**