3am it was. The time that most people would have walked deep into their lala-land, we were sitting in the park, holding the hands of each other looking into the busy port of Singapore. On the hilltop opposite the place where people worked all hours of the day, the bench was made cleaned from the sweeping of my magical hands.
She was 30; I was 26. Her marriage of 9 years had just ended, while I was in the process of tying the loose ends of my divorce with my ex-wife. Under the dim lamps installed to ensure the safety in the park, we talked about everything under the sky, at the same time fingers interlocked, as we held on our sources of comfort in that cooling night.
2 years passed, and my 28th birthday was near. Being 4 years older than me, she was just like wine, perfecting over the years. The quintessential woman in my eyes. I, on the other hand, saw myself standing the side where the milk was – souring as I aged.
It was year 2011. The year we said “I do” in the presence of the solemniser, and had our rings exchanged in a way to signify the binding of the two of us. The day we would become one. She did not want the hassle of going through a wedding, and I thought so too. It was simple, yet memorable for us both.
After the arrival of our kid, we put on the super-parents’ capes, and embarked on our journey to raise this kid created through the pure love and lust we had – and still having – for each other. It was the start point of fatherhood for me.
It was also the year I ended my first business. Put aside the visits I had to make to see my little fellow who was at that time taken care of by my mother-in-law, I juggled between winding up, tying the loose ends, and ensuring that the bread will still be put on the table. Not the hardest time, but still, a period I had weights on my shoulders.
I live by the motto we observed during the days in the army: Advance and Overcome – ensuring the troops’ mobility, counter-mobility, and survivability. The objectives from being in green that I put into the physical aspects of my life. Ensuring the mobility of life, counter-mobility of obstacles, and survivability of my loved ones. My friends wonder – even till this day – why do I stay true to what we learnt during the 2 years that most of us hate. Perhaps not everyone has the same path, and not everyone understands the feeling of having to stay strong during difficult times.
6 years down, and we’re still holding our hands tight. It wasn’t easy; yet, it isn’t something we are ready to give up.
Yes, in the eyes of the ones around me, she may not be the perfect woman. In the mind of those who were once (well, people come and go. Self-victimisation of one party makes the other a villain, but life goes on) besides me, she may be one of the poor choices I’ve made.
Yes, she may have temper that I’ll find sticky to handle at times.
Yes, she may not be perfect.
But, who is?
I’m not exemplary, neither am I a successful man who is able to provide her a life without perturbations. I’m far from good, and yet she stays by me. What more can I ask for?
“I’m a failure” is a sentence that will earn more than a tight slap from her, and that’s one of the loving parts of being her life partner.
Her temper – although bad – makes me gentle, and it teaches me to think before I speak. At the same time, my efforts in loving her make me the first one in her prioritization list. On this path that is walked on with two pairs of feet, we learn ways to love each other, and occasionally looking back and tell ourselves “this is how much we’ve been through together”.
We’re still walking, and we’re still looking back. Not to regret, but to remind ourselves how far we’ve walked through in the arms of each other. We’ll look back, so that we will not forget where those nights up the hills had brought us. We’ll look back; to thank ourselves for the decisions we’ve made that are right.
We’ll look back to know how many milestones we’ve reached with our feet.
A marriage is not an union of two perfect persons, but the journey of 2 imperfect ones.
Andy Lawson is the average man on the street that you’ll not even trouble yourself looking at him if he passes by you. He’s sensitive to bullshit, and he hates mediocrity in most people.
He is the author of his self-published book: Facts and Fiction of Fengshui: Facts that Masters are NOT Telling You.
He doesn’t have Facebook or Twitter, because he hates to be associated with people who tend to be passive-aggressive online, but he does have a very limited set of vocabularies, terrible grammar, a twisted mind that makes himself God in his own twisted world and an ability to communicate with people who wish to be his friend.