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Sunday May 5, 2013
By STEPHANIE STA MARIA
DEAR Mum and Dad, when we got married last November, you often wondered aloud how we found the time to design our own menus, signages and table numbers, and even learnt two dance numbers. It was easy although it took a bit of running around. But what wasn’t easy was setting aside quiet time to write out my wedding speech. It was only when I was getting my hair done an hour before the dinner reception that I jotted down a few notes. And when I watched the video later, I realised that I hadn’t said enough.
I didn’t tell you, Dad, that what I subconsciously looked for in my life partner were the same traits you have and which you instilled in me. Your love for reading. Your thirst for knowledge. The importance of optimism especially in the face of doom and gloom. You taught me that it’s perfectly acceptable for a husband and father to openly express his love for his wife and children. And that the small, subtle sacrifices carry the same amount of weight as the large, obvious ones.
One of your quotes that I have carried with me into adulthood is, “fortune favours the brave”. I still mutter that to myself when I search for a parking spot!
The man I married embodies all of the above.
I didn’t tell you, Mum, that I learnt from you what it meant to be a wife and daughter-in-law. Even before Dad fell gravely ill, you looked out for him in the tiniest of ways. The small things you did (and thought nothing of) for him didn’t go unnoticed.
You took care of Nan (your-mother-in-law) like she was your own mother and it deeply comforted me that she took her last breath in your arms. So many who came to the funeral told me how lucky she was to have had a daughter-in-law like you.
I thought of you when I uttered the vows “in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health”.
Seeing how it’s your 36th wedding anniversary this year, I thought it befitting that I gift you with the speech that was rightfully yours to hear five months ago. I didn’t write it all in a card because this was the speech that all our family and friends should have heard, too.
Thank you for showing that there’s so much happiness in a lifetime commitment.
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