So I came across this show called 90 day fiance – it looks into lives of different couples, essentially one American and the other non-American. There is a fiance visa called K1 visa where the non American can enter USA and stay for 90 days. In that 90 days, the couple have to get married or else the non-american has to leave the country. All of them met somehow or other briefly and seen each other face-to-face for brief periods of time, essentially having long distance relationship.
Though it is of different circumstances for me and M, I felt like I could relate to some of it – like the intercultural bit of the relationship. There was so many difficult questions in the beginning. And we were pretty ‘fast’ for a couple. We got together in October, he flew to Brunei a few months after (March?), his parents came over in June and we got married in September.
From the beginning of our relationship, I’ve stated that if we were to be together, he has to come to Brunei at the end of our training. That has always been my intention – I’ve never wanted to stay here forever and never felt at home here. He agreed, though it prompted many difficult conversations in the beginning. I think he was worried of his family’s reactions as opposed to him personally not wanting to come to Brunei.
Then there were questions that comes every now and then. Like if both of us are deceased, who will take care of our children. Where will we be buried. Will we leave the country if the other dies. It sounds morbid but I guess you have to broach these questions.
As a couple, I feel fortunate that we have the same values in life,work, religion, upbringing of children. We don’t fight much over the BIG things. I guess that made it work – watching the show, when there’s a core value that gets misaligned, it’s pretty hard to imagine how the couples go through it.
We’re still a young couple (6 years together, 5 years married) and we have a lot to learn and go through. There are things that I’m learning that are important to him and he’s realising is important for me. Like raya for me is the biggest thing. I love celebrating raya and being with family for raya and just making a huge big deal out of it. He didn’t grow up that way. He’s always been helping me out for first day raya every year but until last year, he was always oncall. So it was never a big celebration anyway. I think he gets it now though… make a big deal for raya: tick.
As for learning about each other, I KNOW to make things tidy for him (I don’t always though). I was a slob in my single days – my room was always like a shipwreck (‘organised chaos’), I am not tidy AT ALL, I could have damp laundry sitting in the washing machine overnight, I eat on my bed. I must say, I am so much better now. Friends who used to live with me would be surprised. The house is tidy 98% of the time – 2% messy when M is at work and then back to tidy 30 minutes before he comes back. I do find it stressy when the house needs to be tidy all the time. But actually having such busy schedules, it pays to have it tidy. We would have a shipwrecked house otherwise!! I don’t have to worry about allocating half an hour or an hour of cleaning/tidying up. Apart from meals and kids toys, there’s nothing to do really (M probably begs to differ – he who vacuums the house regularly).
Ok I gtg. Just rambling now.