28 July 2016, by Camilla Harrison
Julien and I celebrated our fifth year anniversary last Saturday. The hope was to spend the whole day out and about, but with Soma being just nine months old, it was a bit too difficult. So we actually split the celebration up into two:
- We had high tea the previous weekend and
- this weekend, we went out for dinner at this amazing rooftop place in the CBD area called Artemis. We had a sunset view of MBS and Gardens by the Bay – both of which lit up (I like to think that it was specially for our anniversary but I know it’s a nightly occurrence… lol.)
What I wanted for our anniversary was just time together. No presents, just some time alone. But before we left for dinner, Siena was already begging to come with us and I swear Julien gave me one of those “ok-let’s-just-bring-her” look. But I insisted on this being just us. I can only imagine Siena running up and down the restaurant (we are still working on staying at the table for dinner 🙂 )
Just to give you a bit of background on how we got to this fifth year celebration: Julien and I met in Vancouver, Canada, where I come from. Julien is French and had been living and working there for a few years before we got set-up to go on a blind date (see blind dates can work out :-)!) Within six months, we moved to the UK, then to Argentina and finally, Singapore.
We were married in France and had both our girls here in Singapore.
Our time in Singapore has been amazing, from having our children, to travelling, to learning all about Singapore. these experiences have not only stretched us as a couple but, continually solidify us.
I think that’s a huge part of marriage, actually: standing together amidst the unknown. And it doesn’t have to be the unknown of living in a new country like we are doing; it can be the unknown of just not knowing what you will be doing in a year, the unknown of wondering how your children might turn out or any other changes.
When I look back to our carefree pre-baby days, yes there was more time for us as a couple, but life is so much richer now with kids! And yes, it’s a lot harder too. I do worry about things like bullying and I am concerned with health insurance matters – when these never crossed my mind during the pre-children stage! But life is now funnier, more meaningful and just plain awesome. I wouldn’t change it for the world.
So five years in, it is still in working progress. I have no secrets to a good marriage but I have learnt that you learn a lot more by listening than talking, support in the good times is just as meaningful as support during the hard times and it’s all about trust; trust in yourself and your ability to handle whatever comes your way.
It’s funny when we were on vacation in Italy once, we passed by a couple eating dinner and not talking to each other. I remember saying to Julien how sad I thought that couple looked, not talking and that I hoped we would never be like that. Julien responded by saying he thought they weren’t talking as they are so happy and content with each other they didn’t even need to speak. “I hope we are like that!!” I remember him saying. For some reason, that stayed with me and it is exactly how we were at dinner for our fifth year anniversary. Happy, content and silent (the amazing food did have something to do with it, lol).
And while I can’t spam you with all the highlights of our five years together, I can show you the newest addition to our home: a photo wall of my favorite photos from the past five years.