“Wish I could turn back time, to the good old days” 

We just finished up our last wedding celebration in Jetaime’s hometown of Pekan Nenas in Johor, Malaysia. It was a huge blast. Her family is so welcoming, kind, generous, hospitable, helpful, and even hilarious. We turned the front yard and even the street in front of her house into a huge buffet eating area and over 200 people came to celebrate with us! 

I learned, and likely forgot, so many names and faces. It was so humbling to see how many people Jetaime has touched through the influence of her life. She has loved well and is well loved. I got to meet so many of the student reporters she was involved with. It was a simple extra curricular group but the bonds went deep and I was so surprised and encouraged by their joy and friendship they found in each other. 

I got to try out my mandarin in introducing myself to many of her relatives and they were all so supportive and cheered on my efforts. It’s been hard, but so worthwhile to put in the effort to learn Chinese. When I see all the amazing people that I can communicate with even better when I know Chinese well it motivates me all the more. 

The phrase I started this post with is a quote from a song that was on the car radio during our wedding day. It made me think. I’m actually living in my “good old days” right now. The moments that we will reminisce about when we are much older and the smile lines have worn into our satisfied faces. It’s still so easy to take them for granted or let them pass by. Or even worse, to neglect the opportunity to love in the moment that I’m in. 

I’ve been realizing that it is the small things repeated that become the big parts of our life. The simple, small acts of love actually carry great weight. During our Pekan Nenas wedding I saw Jetaime being so attentive to the needs of all her friends even though she was pretty tired. She made sure everyone had someone to talk to, that everyone who wanted a photo with us got one, and that almost everyone received a really heartfelt thank you for coming. Then later in the night, after everything was over, and she was even more exhausted, she spent the time to ask me how I was doing, to encourage me and I her, and to make me laugh, and then just to hug for awhile before falling contentedly to sleep. I’ve learned so much about what love looks like from her. 

These beautiful moments and days will be relived in my mind often in the years to come, but I think the most exciting thing is realizing that the fun is just starting. I know our life together is going to be really difficult, but I’m just as sure it will also be filled with moments of joy unspeakable and full of glory. No matter what comes our way I think we can handle it together and with Gods help. This life is so sweet, I can’t wait for tomorrow!