Tribolum.com Making Light of Things

Joined as One

A wife of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.
Her husband has full confidence in her
and lacks nothing of value.
Proverbs 31:1-2

My dearest Faith,

It’s nothing short of amazing to think that it’s been twenty years since we first held hands, and in some jejune manner, made a choice to commit ourselves to each other. It’s easy to think as adults do and deride childish notions of romance, but when I look at it closely, love is something intrinsically understood, and the young probably have a better grasp of what it is, untainted by the constraints of pragmatism. As we grow older we believe that our choices are shaped by circumstance, and even in design the better designers view and accept constraints as guiding principles rather than restrictions, but things of God — the eternal things, the ones that really matter — exist outside of these constraints. These are the things that overcome.

In our journey together we faced our fair share of obstacles. As I sit back and recall how we dealt with the difficulty of growing up and staying together, as we both sought our individual identities, I remember how it tore at our very hearts that things didn’t seem to just stay “in a good place”. As we graduated from school to school, environments changed, and my sense of security was shaken when you wondered aloud back then if you had foregone many opportunities by being with me.

You definitely have.

You waited for me through National Service. You shaved my head, and thanks to my brilliant advice to use the electric shaver without its plastic guard, gave me the shortest and most uneven haircut of my life. You waited while I queued up for 3 minute phone calls on the public telephone at nights just to hear your voice. It was hard to put on a nonchalant face, but there were 30 to 40 topless men waiting behind me to use the phone. For two and a half years you waited.

You waited for me through college. In a time before Skype and Facetime, we chatted daily on IRC. It was 5 in the morning in Arizona, and the end of the day for you here in Singapore. There were days when you were so tired but still hung on to find out how my previous day went.

There were many opportunities, many nice prospective men, and somehow you hung on to this shimmer of a relationship so far away. It’s been one of God’s greatest blessings in my life that you did.

The second decade (9 years now) spent as man and wife have been the sweetest years of my life. Even now, the thought that I no longer need to bid you goodbye, and that we’re on an ongoing date thrills me to no end. The nights spent beside each other fills us both with the excitement of a sleepover, and I instinctively stick my toes out of our blanket, wiggle them and squeal at how blessed we are to be right here, right now.

Having you by my side as we admire the spectacular sunrise of our children’s lives can only be described as having the joy in our cup overflowing past its brim. Even now Anne reads over my shoulder, asking why I’m writing you a letter when you’re sleeping right in the next room. I tell her that like the storybooks she writes and illustrates, I write because I want to remember, and read this many years from now.

I thank God for you.