19 December 2018, by Sheila Sim

I didn’t get married at 26

Photo by: thisisthegaleria

Photo by: thisisthegaleria

When I was 17, I set myself a target. I told myself I’ll get married at 26.

I’m sure many of you find this thinking familiar. And we all know how that turned out… Haha! In the blink of an eye, I turned 24.

I realised I didn’t have enough time, nor was I in a relationship that was ready for marriage. But I was still hopeful.

So, I changed my target to 28. And then again to 30.

Eventually, on my 30th birthday, with much reluctance, I accepted that I had missed all of my checkpoints.

There are some people who’d plan and organise their life and meet every checkpoint with a desirable result…well… I’m not one of them.

Finally, at 30 I decided to resign to fate and stop having a target.

Ironically, turning 30 was the best thing that’s happened to me because that was when I decided to change my career path, from a model to a model agency owner, as well as an actress.

Turning 30 was also the fateful year whereby, for the first time in my life, I reflected about myself.

Not just a casual, on the surface kind, but a deep, intentional, painstaking reflection kind.

That was when I decided I am going to become a better version of myself and work on finding out answers even if it hurt.

And just like that, I started my journey of self-exploration.

With no knowledge at all about meditation, I signed myself up for a 10-day silent meditation retreat.

I went ahead to throw myself into the deep end.

Meditation helped me see things objectively instead of emotionally. It taught me to treat myself with compassion, to accept me for who I really was.

Slowly, I started seeing myself and life very differently. I learnt to look inward and to look at things from a different perspective.

When Deon and I found each other, I knew deep down, it wasn’t just because it was love at first sight, or that he was my destiny.

Yes, he was all of that, but, I also knew, I worked hard to be the person I am, so that when he came along, I was ready to be with him.

In fact, this doesn’t just work for a love relationship. This is how life works. We are in a constant state of practice, be it work or relationship, culinary skills or motherhood, etc.

We are constantly practising the different roles we are being dedicated in our life, so when the opportunity arises, we will be ready for it.

Take an actress, for example, we aren’t always given leading, fancy roles. We work our way through many small roles so that when the window of opportunity arises, we will be ready to take it on!

Another example is how many people go through the same cycle of falling in love with the wrong person. It hurts like crazy, but we keep making the same mistake of falling for the same type over and over again.

We keep practising and learning about what doesn’t work for us, eventually, we’ll learn how to appreciate and embrace the right person when they come along.

“The universe doesn’t let us get away with anything. Its loving energy allows us to repeat similar life experiences over and over again until we learn that spiritual lesson.”

What they say about right time right place is absolutely right. But I truly believe that this “right time, right place” magic doesn’t last forever.

It also requires a lot of effort in maintaining a healthy relationship. It involves both parties falling in love over and over again, in a different manner, at a different stage of their life.

Our marriage is currently 1 year old. We are still pretty much in our honeymoon period. Some will drown our excitement by telling us this “honeymoon period” is only temporary, “10 years later then you come and tell me lah.”

Tell you what? That marriage suck? That I would rather be alone?

The truth is, I wouldn’t know how life will be 10 years later.

They might be right, they might be wrong.

But that hardly is the right thing to say to any newlyweds anyway. No one goes into a marriage expecting it to fail.

What I know is, I’m going to try my best and enjoy the ride – grow the marriage with respect, communication, trust, faith, fun and love.

photo by: @thisisthegaleria

photo by: @thisisthegaleria

I look around me, and I see many married couples still living the magic, 10 years, 20 years, 30 years, some even 40 years down the road.

I made a promise to Deon, I’ll spend the rest of my life irritating the sh*t out of him.

And I’ve been keeping my word. He shouts for help every day and every night, but with a smile on his face no less.

Life is like a mirror. If you feed it with positivity, it’ll always gift you back with the same!

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