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Thursday, March 28, 2013

I know I've been neglecting my blog.. My entries are spaced further and further apart. I've been so busy with work and trying hard to catch up on my sleep or spending time with Le bf and his family during my off time that I don't have time to blog, but I am very active on Twitter still! :)

Well.. in case you don't follow me on Twitter, I have a big announcement to make! 


Is this news big enough to make up for not blogging for more than 1 month?

When I say married, it's the full wedding with solemnization, church wedding and dinner banquet! The date is set in September this year and I will only reveal the actual date and send out the official "Save the Date" notices when I've paid all the deposit for the venues.

I am so happy and excited, I'm still feeling the high even though it's been 2 weeks since we officially started planning for our wedding!

We have informed our close friends about our decision to get married and 90% of the reaction is "WAH! WHY SO FAST!?". 

Seriously? Before we decided to get married, each and everyone of you have been pestering us to get married and even kept pushing us for a date yet now you are asking us why so fast? Only a few like Tabby and my sister are super happy without the "Why so fast" question.

I've done a lot these 2 weeks. Initially I wanted to hire a wedding planner but in the end I decided to do everything by myself cos I am a control freak. Nathaniel called me a Bridezilla.. I beg to differ. I am just a very efficient and organized Bride-to-be.. it's difficult liaising with vendors and working my fucked-up night shift timing, but I am trying my best to do it.

What I've done so far:
  1. Sourced for venues and confirmed the dates for
    • Church Wedding & Solemnization (Paying deposit soon)
    • Dinner Banquet at a hotel (Signing contract soon)
  2. Confirmed and finalized my Bridal Party (7 bridesmaids + 1 attendant)
  3. Researched and shortlisted photographer, videographer & makeup artists
  4. Researched and shortlisted Bridesmaid dresses & Bridal gowns
  5. Confirmed and paid for Dessert Buffet Table for the Church wedding
  6. Researched for photobooth
And many many more... more than I can remember now...

I printed out ALL the banquet prices for Singapore hotels and actually bind them into 2 books. I also emailed ALL the hotels in Singapore asking for weekend dinner availability. (Mama Chew doesn't want Sentosa hotels, so I didn't bother finding out from those).

Most people book their wedding dinner 1 year in advance so I am being very ambitious to try to find a date in 6 months time.. but I managed to find it! Yay me! Initially I got 12-Oct-2013 for Mandarin Oriental, but Yaya & Joyce insisted that it's an inauspicious date to marry and tried very hard to dissuade me.. Both Brendan & I are not pantang (superstitious), but in the end I chose September because of the package and date offered by the other hotel.

As for the "Why so fast question", this is a very complicated question to answer (which I will try to explain below), but the simple answer will be..

In December, we tried to apply for our 1st BTO with HDB at Toa Payoh. Failed miserably.. our queue number was 1500++ and there were only like 300 units. In February we tried for Tampines BTO but also failed.. this time not that bad, but our queue number was still doubled that what was offered. We are not bidding for the latest BTO cos the locations are Punggol, Sengkang & Bukit Batok. We want somewhere in the East side, nearer to his parents.

Our main purpose to apply for the BTO is for investment purposes because we planned to live with his parents after we get married. We don't need the house to live in and we can just leave it till it's time to sell it since property prices kept jumping every year.

Back in late January, I had the sudden thought to go overseas to further my studies. I was disillusioned and jaded about my prospects in Singapore. Our government kept introducing policies that are not very assuring for local born Singaporeans. I am being paid above my pay grade now and if I lose my job, it will be very difficult for me to find a similar job that can pay me what I am getting now.. though I am also feeling disgruntled at work because the new hires are receiving a higher basic pay than me even though I am here for 1.5yrs and I have to mentor them! On top of everything, my rental is just killing me! At SGD1500 a month, it's more than half of my take home pay and it's really downright ridiculous that I am paying so much money for a room to stay. As of this month, I've already paid SGD18000 for my rental. That's the basic gross annual salary of many Singaporeans.. and I'm just throwing that money away for a place to sleep.

If you want to preach about how I can find another cheaper place, blah blah blah.. save the effort and go do your own research on the prices of housing rent in Singapore. It has increased so much, I doubt I can find the same kind of accommodation at SGD1500 now.

So, all the factors combine together made me consider about going overseas to further my studies. Yes, it will not be easy because I am giving up my income, I am leaving Le bf in Singapore, I am going back to full time study after a long hiatus from studying.. But I was determined to make it work. For my future, for our future (with Le bf) cos we can have an option to migrate to another country.

I discussed with Le bf extensively about my plans and he was very supportive though he couldn't bear to be apart from me for a few years. He even offered to be my guarantor for my study loans and brainstormed for days on how he can extend his business into Australia so he can always travel there to be with me (but it's difficult cos his business dealings is usually with China and USA).

I told Tabby about my idea and she suggested that I go to Perth to further my studies. She very generously invited me to stay at her house for the duration of my study for free and help me in anyway I can. I really don't know how to express my gratitude for having such a wonderful friend who don't hesitate to help me even though she will be inconvenienced.

As advised by Tabby, I researched on the schools and courses I want to take, I went to IDP and submitted all my documents, found out on how I can bring Chloe over with me when I go there. Made a list of what I should do, which banks I should go to for loans.. etc.

Le bf told Papa Chew about my plans and he was taken aback because Le bf threw a bomb at him by saying "Maybe I'll migrate to Australia with Jasmine". Like seriously! I didn't know he was gonna say that but Papa Chew nearly fainted (I think), cos he is the only son, the eldest child, the eldest grandchild and he's telling Papa Chew that he's leaving Singapore for good to go overseas.

We spoke with Mama Chew together and she was trying her best to discourage me because she felt that a long distance relationship is very tough and may not work out. Also, she's worried about my career prospects as the economy is very erratic now and I may or may not be able to get a well paying job to pay back my study loans, worse still I may not get a job in Perth and have to come back to Singapore to work for a lower salary than what I have now and end up being worse off. Time wasted, money wasted and putting our relationship at risk.

However, Le bf and Tabby were very supportive of my decision and they did everything they could to help me. They encouraged me, did research for me and also urged me to do what I want to do.

Le bf and I discussed about getting married before I go for my studies. Just a simple ROM solemnization ceremony... But we gave up on that idea because it kinda defeats the purpose. We don't want to get married for any other reason except wanting to be wed to each other because we want to, not because we have to.

Many people get married for all the wrong reasons nowadays. Unplanned pregnancy, to buy a house, to move out from their parents' house, insecurity, etc. We don't want to be like them.

So we also signed up for a marriage course at our church. It is not compulsory but necessary if we want a pastor from our church to marry us. It is also a good way for us to understand each other better cos we both know being in a relationship is different from being in a marriage. Priorities and responsibilities are very different and we want to make sure we are both sure about what we want in a marriage. There were a few assessment tests we had to take and we are both surprised and glad that our affirmations and ideas of a marriage are very similar. There are further assessments we need to take and that will be in a few weeks time when our pastor meets up with us to go through the homework that we have to do. The homework is.. crazy hard. I told Le bf that those few pages left me mind-fucked cos the questions asked are so though-provoking..

Meanwhile, time goes by and I did not receive any news from IDP even though I was promised a reply (either rejection or approval) by end February. Tabby regularly text me to ask about the outcome and I always tell her "No reply yet..", which is true. She is so excited for me to go over to be with her and I feel so loved and blessed.

Le bf did not ask me about me about the outcome. I don't know the real reason because I did not ask him, but I guess he is secretly glad I did not receive any news...

But guess what? After we made the decision to get married this year and to abandon my plans to head overseas, I just received an acceptance letter from one of the Unis in Perth 2 days ago! I decided to ignore the letter because after all the waiting & discussion, I decided my heart and place belongs here in Singapore with him.

I am working in the night shift and both my timings and Le bf's clashed. I remembered one week where we did not meet for 6 days and we both missed each other like crazy. Being physically apart in Singapore is already so unbearable when we can meet up easily with just a maximum of 45mins drive away, imagine being away from each other.. in different continents (literally), 5hrs10mins by flight to see each other? It was after that week that we both realized that long distance relationship is never gonna work for us. It's not that we are insecure or clingy, we just can't stand being apart.

Le bf did not propose to me.. well, not yet. He is going to plan something and he needs to do something cos the first question / or second question after the "Why so fast?" question is "HOW YOU PROPOSE?!?!".. He need to think of something before we announce our wedding to the world cos everyone is gonna ask him. Hahahaha!

We told Papa & Mama Chew about our decision to ROM first then marry 1 or 2 years later.. they insisted that ROM is not considered marriage and we should just do everything together.. So that's how our plans for an ROM turned into a full fledged wedding.

And how did we end up deciding about going for ROM? I really don't know. I guess it's just a combination of all the factors above plus the fact that we love each other a lot and we know we are the one for each other. Marry now, marry next year, marry next decade.. it'll still be the same outcome.. we will still be together forever.

It may sound cliche or mushy, but Le bf completes me and makes my life complete. I know he feels the same way too. His presence calms me and makes me happy. We can be with each other in the same room doing our own stuff but we are happy because we can see and feel the other person's proximity. When I am in his arms, the whole world just disappears and I forget about all my unhappiness & worries I have.

I cannot imagine my life without him and it actually scares me that I am actually dependent on a person cos I've been independent for the most part of my life and my past relationships are nothing like what I have with Le bf. I actually worry when he is not beside me.. worry if he has eaten, worry that he will hurt himself, worry that he is stressed out from work.

My life used to be just me & Chloe. Imagine a bubble of protection.. inside is me and Chloe and no one else. Chloe loves me unconditionally and will never hurt me so she has been there since Day 1.

If you know me and my previous relationships, I never let any of them into the Bubble because I don't trust any of them. If they do things and say things to hurt me whilst outside the Bubble, imagine what kind of damage they can inflict on me when they are inside?!

It took me some time before I let Le bf completely into the Bubble... And now that he's in it, he actually strengthens my Bubble and made me stronger. :)

1 Corinthians 13:4-8

New International Version (NIV)
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.

If you understand what the bible says about love in Corinthians 13:4-8, good for you! Because you are in a beautiful relationship that's blessed by God. If you don't... well, I hope you will experience it one day. I waited all my life for someone like Le bf, and it's worth the wait and all the heartaches I went through.

I never believe in marriages because I've never met the right one before. Now I can't wait for our forever to start.

I will try to update more about my wedding planning soon. This entry has taken up a lot of my mental and emotional energy.. Good night!