I decided to make today’s blog entry a special tribute to my husband (a.k.a. lifelong partner, forever date, co-parent, best friend, and many more) as we celebrated our 13th wedding anniversary last week. It’s hard to believe that it has been 13 great years since we formalized our love and commitment to each other via our civil wedding. Looking back, I realized that we have been partners ever since – in different capacities, of course – and I’m glad that we continue to work hard to make our relationship with each other (and as a family) stronger.
Partners right from the start
I remember I was an eager neophyte employee fresh from the university, and he was a more experienced engineer who has worked on some construction projects. We were both nervous on our first day at work as management trainees (or “cadets” as what they called us), but we listened intently as our training program was explained to us. Minutes later, we found ourselves as partners for our “getting to know you” icebreaker. Who knew? 🙂 It was our first time to actually talk to each other, and being the funny guy that he is, he made me laugh a lot and so I enjoyed our brief interaction. I guess you could say that we connected right from the start.
A few weeks into our training, we were sent out to do field work. And guess what? We were assigned as partners again. This time, however, we were more comfortable with each other and had an even better time together. More “opportunities” like this came up as months went by, and these made us closer and closer. Soon after, we became good friends, constantly checking on each other and making sure we meet up from time to time though we had different offices. He knew many of my stories, including my love life at that time. 🙂 He was a good friend first, and the rest, as they say, is history.
A life-long commitment to partnership
We were married at a relatively young age (by society’s standards, at least) with very little knowledge on how to do household work, budget money, and more importantly, start and build a family. I’m grateful to my husband for being patient with me as I admit I wasn’t exactly a wife material back then. 🙂 We also had limited funds at the start as we were just living off our salaries. My husband tried his best to make life comfortable for me still, to the point of giving up some things for himself. (See related: Reflections on starting a family at a young age ) As we took this stage of our relationship most seriously, we vowed to be financially independent, and to have a home of our own no matter how simple it was at the beginning. We chose to be partners in life and for life, and we intend to keep it that way.
We also knew that our union was bigger than us – that we will soon be parents and be responsible for the life of our precious gifts. We were clueless on how to do just that, to be honest, but we were willing learners of the complex concept of parenthood. We were partners as responsible parents, always keeping in check one another if we are doing the best we can to be the kind of mom and dad our kids deserve. It has always been about family – our family of five – and everything else comes second (or even third or fourth).
It’s just a blessing to have a partner who sees things the way you do and who espouses your values and principles in life. We may be brought up differently, but I’m happy that we agree on important matters for the good of our family.
Moving up as partners
As we moved up the career ladder because of our own merits, we were together as husband and wife, and we continue to be supportive of each other. We celebrate each other’s success, regardless of how trivial it may seem for other people. We beam with pride when one of us gets recognized because of our performance. Needless to say, I am proud of my husband – for what he has accomplished, for the kind of leader he is now, and for his potential to reach new heights. I actually call him a superstar! 🙂 #proudwifey
We talk about our issues at work and offer advice to overcome them. You’d think that having your husband (or wife) as a co-employee is problematic and suffocating, but from my experience, it has been nothing but refreshing and comforting as you can talk to someone who has a clear understanding of what you’re going through in the office.
As we started taking on more senior roles, which meant additional responsibilities, it became more difficult for us to manage our time and excel at our jobs both at work and at home. I can say we managed to do that, although we had to make certain adjustments and a lot of sacrifices. And I think this is where partnership is key. As partners, we try to divide the tasks that need to be accomplished, take turns in attending our kids’ school events and activities, and basically just making everything work for everyone. I am extremely thankful to my husband for being open about this and for not subscribing to the overly masculine idea that I should be the one doing all child-rearing and household-related work since I’m the wife and mother. He actually helps me out a lot, and that, I think, is one of the reasons he stands out as a model dad and hubby. 🙂
As I reflect on the life we’ve had so far, I thank my husband for being who he is and for continuously trying to be even better for me and our children. No one is perfect, for sure, but you have to give credit to someone who works really hard to be as perfect as he can be. Let me also thank him in advance for the next decades that we’ll be together because I’m confident that he will remain the best partner I or any wife could hope for.
Happy 13th to us, partner! Know that you are appreciated and loved unconditionally. xoxo