"It's a question of discipline," the little prince told me later on. "When you've finished washing and dressing each morning, you must tend your planet."
The Little Prince (1943) by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
I am not dead yet.
To bring everyone up to the breakneck speed by which I am moving, I am now married, expecting my firstborn's arrival and looking to relocate to Penang (where my wife had bought our first home) before the end of 2013. If you tell me in the beginning of 2012 that this is what my life would be like after just one year, I would sooner believe in the existence of God than believe you. I thought I would never be married. I was sure I wouldn't have a kid. Now, I did both those things earlier than any of my you-will-eat-your-words friends have.
I apologise for being away for so very long but I doubt there is any of you left to apologise to.
Marriage, as I have always suspected, is a very complicated and difficult thing. I have been humbled and no longer thinks that it is merely just a romantic relationship plus certification - it is not "just a piece of paper" as I have often called it dismissively. It is, to some degree, the extinction of the self. Never before in all my previous relationships do I feel the urgent need to think in terms of "us" instead of "me me me" as per my normal, pre-matrimonial self. Every decision I make now affects two - no, three lives (or twenty one, if you count our two cats). I can no longer just live in the moment but instead, somewhere south of at least twenty years into the future. Being the egocentric selfish jerk that I am accustomed to being all my life, this is not at all an easy transformation.
Being married also made me realise that I am in no way an adult just because I graduated, started practicing as a doctor and became financially independent. I am still learning to wrestle with adult responsibilities like car insurance, taxes, investments and housing loans; stuff which my wife is way more capable at dealing than I am. It is sobering to realise that no matter how intelligent or smart I am, I would probably not do very well without her help in handling all these earthier but ultimately more essential concerns. Being married to an adolescent so out of touch with reality must be terrifying for her. She likes to call it my "bubble" of idealism and ignorance - I have an idea of how the world should work and that idea somehow repels reality. I like to think of it as a forcefield of denial. For her sake (and our kid's and cats' sakes), I must deny it no further.
She is the first woman I have met who makes me want to be a better man.
This is why I was gone for so long. I had a lot of growing up to do. After all, I got to be adult enough in time to be a father.
k0k s3n w4i
k0k s3n w4i