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A new convert

I used to think I’d never get married. 

Marriage, to me, was just a certificate; an outmoded social construct. It was a vow that could be broken on a whim — if two people were no longer committed to each other, a legal bond was not going to keep them together. 

And don’t get me started on weddings. Some girls spend their whole lives dreaming up their perfect, tinsel-trimmed affair, but I never thought very much of it. 

In place of marriage, I was always more interested in finding a lifelong companion to travel the world with, indulge in the occasional overpriced meal I can’t afford, and end the hectic day curled up with a good book to soothing jazz.

The meeting

I met my husband in the most unlikely of places. 

I’m a Chelsea Football Club fan, and was at the club’s fan tour in Kuala Lumpur in 2013. I had gone there with one mission in mind — to catch the eye of the gorgeous Belgian midfielder Eden Hazard. To my dismay, I realised that Hazard was already married, so I had to move on.

On the final day of the tour, I bumped into my future husband at one of the rest stops and we struck up a conversation. At that time, both of us were working at Raffles City Tower, so we decided to meet for dinner after work one day.

While we did not make much of an impression on each other during that brief introduction, we started becoming firm friends over weeks of chatting on Whatsapp.

During our first dinner together, we both felt a mutual connection. The interaction was easy and we even got on to discussing our Myer Briggs personality types — he is an ENTJ and I am an ENFP (sometimes INFP).

It may be because my husband is seven years older than me, but I really admired his calm disposition and quiet confidence (of course, I’ve come to realise that he sometimes morphs into a hothead when he is driving or gaming). Talking to and being about

him made me feel calm and he brought balance to the force.

 My husband is now my chief financial officer, while I am the indisputable CEO — chief entertainment officer.

Character-wise however, my husband and I could not be more dissimilar. He’s a corporate workhorse, and I’m more of a creative, footloose and fancy-free wild child. 

For example, whenever we travel, his luggage is always impeccable; mine is a garage sale. He has a very tight rein on his finances; I am admittedly terrible at keeping track of my money. 

Essentially, I think we work because our fundamental values are very similar. We value family, kindness and hard work, and both of us are very much givers rather than takers. We hardly ever quarrel as most of our issues are resolved as soon as we voice our disagreements (or maybe it’s because he gives in to me often!).

In spite of our differences, we make up for each other’s shortcomings and learn from each other’s strengths. My husband is now my chief financial officer, while I am the indisputable CEO — chief entertainment officer.

The wedding

Getting married was a natural progression for us. My husband was very sure of what he wanted, so he put a ring on it. 

We faced no restrictions from our parents, in fact, I think my parents are so enamoured with my husband that they would rather swap me for their new son-in-law now.

Unsurprisingly, our expectations of what we wanted our wedding to be like differed greatly.

My husband wanted a traditional Chinese wedding with a big banquet for all our family and friends, but I wanted a more (wildly romantic) private ceremony for just the two of us. 

True to our nature, we arrived at a compromise — to have both! 

We eloped to Iceland and solemnised our marriage on a sea cliff on the eastern coast; and half a year later, we held our Chinese wedding lunch for nearly 300 guests at a hotel in Singapore.

I contributed the wild ideas, while my husband put all of them into a coherent and concise project plan with a budget. 

There were no bridezilla moments from me, and my husband was very receptive to my unorthodox ideas.

Happily enough, our weddings were a joint project which brought us closer together. It was a good example of how the two of us bring different strengths to the table and work well as partners. 

Little ones

Now that we have a house and are nicely settled in, having kids is definitely on the cards.

Honestly, I am not crazy about the idea as I am afraid of taking on the stresses of child rearing, as well as the potential negative impact on my career. 

The whole idea of having a little human growing in my belly, sapping my nutrients and energy, then bursting right out (okay, not exactly) also brings to my mind gory images from Sigourney Weaver’s Alien movies and Prometheus.

But looking at my friends’ adorable baby photos, I cannot help but feel a desire to have one of my own.

I wonder what it would be like to raise a mini-me, read him or her bedtime stories, nurse cuts and bruises, and teach him or her everything I know about life. 

Having a baby with my husband would be the ultimate expression of our love and bond, a joint project, a shared experience and life-long journey.

I know my parents and in-laws cannot wait to hold their grandchild in their arms.

With such a wonderful and supportive partner, I think we will be able to survive babydom and have fun while we are at it. 

In my younger days, I used to dream of a love that would rock my world, but over time, I’ve come to realise that the best lovers are the ones who consistently, day after day, make an effort through their actions to show their love and care for you. It’s not the most romantic love story, but it is easy-going, fulfilling and keeps you sane. 

This kind of love builds you up, and spurs you on to be the best you can be in other areas of your life.

Man carrying woman over his shoulder.

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