A letter to my 19-year-old self:
You don’t know this but ten years from today, you’re ten days away from your wedding day. You worked late today and then went to meet your fiance for dim sum at Geylang.
Ten years does seem like a long time. Your ideal age to get married is before 25, so you might not be very pleased to know that you’re getting married only at 29. I will not justify any age to be the “right age” for marriage but what I will say is that choosing the man you will marry is one of the most important decisions you will ever make. Don’t screw this up. Open your eyes and be honest with yourself. If you know you should not stay, be brave and leave.
You will meet plenty of men along the way. Some will treat you well but you don’t feel the chemistry. Some will take some time before either of you realises an attraction. Where you are now, you haven’t yet met this wonderful man you will marry but in time to come, you will. Be patient.
At this time, you’re working in church and still unsure whether you will be accepted into a local university. You have just experienced God in many different ways and He has revealed himself real to you. Hold tight to your faith. Hold onto your testimony. There are people who need to hear your story. I won’t tell you if you made it to a local university but I can tell you that you enjoyed your studies and made great friends, one of whom will even become your bridesmaid. Wherever you are, share your story. Tell anyone who is willing to listen how God healed you of your bad wrist, how He spoke to you intimately through a text message, and how He is the reason you live.
You have made a few mistakes and did some wrongs. It may feel like the biggest regret of your life but you will soon learn that there are greater regrets. I say this not to scare you but to remind you that we have a Father whose mercies are new every morning. When you realise you have done wrong, tell God that you’re sorry. He forgives. When you’re fighting with your boyfriend, it’s okay to tell God that you don’t know what to do. When you’re crying yourself to sleep, it’s okay to tell God how much it hurts. He cares. He cares a lot more than you think He does.
Love your parents. Care for your father and mother. Tell them I love you. Mummy has strict curfews for you at this point, don’t fault her for it. You may feel like you’re missing out but soon you will realise that the friends who mind, don’t matter, and the ones who matter don’t mind.
Not all your friends will stay the same. Some may not even stay. You will face disappointments, you may even be hurt. Just remember, humans are not perfect and cannot possibly be perfect while we are still here on earth. Even this wonderful man whom you will meet and marry is not perfect. He is just like you, full of flaws and quirks. The only one who is perfect is our Lord Jesus.
Life ahead seems uncertain. Don’t be afraid, you will be okay.
After all, ten years from today, you will be wolfing down prawn rolls and siew mai with your fiance in Geylang and discussing whether to pay a couple of foreign laborers to paint your house.
I guess I forgot to mention, you just bought a house too. Told cha you’ll be okay.