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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Dancing the Flamenco


Somehow, we are fond of naming the stages in our relationship after certain kinds of dance, even if we are not good dancers at all. And although our marriage is certainly not a walk in the park, I am glad that my dance partner tries his best to stay and make our dance lively and smooth, especially that we now have children and are dancing the flamenco.
 

I was perfectly happy and contented when I met the man who was to be my husband. I was joyfully serving in various ministries at my new church and  I was determined to enjoy and make every moment of my single-hood worthwhile. Although we belonged to the same church, and had noticed each other’s presence, it was not until about a year later that we were formally introduced to one another. We were both attending a small party for church volunteers and happened to be on the same table. His sister introduced us, but we never really talked. That was August 2001.
Months passed before we had the opportunity to get to know each other. Our respective ministries happened to co-sponsor the nightly church service (Simbang Gabi in Filipino, literally) during that same year’s Christmas season. Their ministry was in charge of the music, while ours was in charge of the rest of the program. After the service, our groups agreed to go out for some coffee, so that we could all get to know each other more, especially that we belonged to the same church and our ministries were closely related. He was with the Youth Ministry while I was with the Yuppies Ministry. Members of their group would become part of our group eventually, so it was imperative that we try to get to know each other. That was the start of our friendship.

More opportunities came for us to work together at church and get to know each other deeper. I discovered that this man was not only musically talented, but was also a good actor, a versatile artist, a whimsical writer, an athlete, and a very intelligent person. I also learned that he was very sensitive, moody, and eccentric in so many ways. Worse, I realized that we were very different from each other. However, in the end, it seemed that our differences were the very same things that drew us to each other.
He expressed his intention to court me on June 7, 2002. I tried to turn him down by saying that I was not ready for courtship, and that I was happy being single. Although I admired him for being so talented and the attention he was showering me was very flattering, I was not sure if I would like him to be my husband. Physically, he was not really my type. More, although I was only six months older than he was, it felt like I was years older than him since he was still in college while I was already working, putting into good use my Bachelor’s Degree. I did not have the heart to tell him these things though; instead, I told him that if I would ever get into another relationship, it would be with marriage in mind. That was true, however, and I thought that would also keep him away, especially that he did not seem mature enough to me then. Nevertheless, he professed to have the same objective, that is, marriage, and somehow, I was not able to find enough reasons to drive him away. That was the start of our tango or courtship.
He became my avid suitor and I slowly found myself liking him too much for my own good. During weekdays, he would bring me flowers, chocolates, and lunch at the office. He would write me letters—yes, old fashioned letters—as well as emails. He would often call me on the phone and send me numerous text messages throughout the day. By the end of office hours, he would be outside my work place, waiting for me, ready to accompany me to our house. On Saturdays, we would chat online, especially when we did not have church activities or reasons to go to church and see each other. On Sunday, we would attend the church service together. He was very consistent with his actions and made sure that I knew that he was willing to wait. By September of the same year, I was the one who could no longer wait. I finally said “yes” to him and we happily announced to our friends that we were officially a couple. Three more months and we were finally engaged despite my previous hesitations when he first expressed his intention to court me.
On 21 March 2003, we were finally married in a civil ceremony and were wed at our church on 28 June 2003. We called this new phase in our relationship waltz. Somehow, we are fond of naming the stages in our relationship after certain kinds of dance, even if we are not good dancers at all. And although our marriage is certainly not a walk in the park, I am glad that my dance partner tries his best to stay and make our dance lively and smooth, especially that we now have children and are dancing the flamenco.