And what that meant for our relationship.
I had been with my husband since I was 21, and he proposed to me 3 and a half years later, shortly after I turned 24.
At that point in time, I had worked for a year at a stressful job doing new product design engineering, which included coordinating new sample requests up to their delivery to our end customers. Datelines and late nights were what I lived with in that season of my life. It was tough.
I worked 12-hour days, getting up just before the sunrise but going home after dark at night, typically around 8 pm. I had gotten used to stress eating after work, and having late-night meals, with no exercise whatsoever.
I was typically exhausted after work and the few hours of free time I had at night were spent eating and watching a show to destress, and eventually sleeping around midnight. Six and a half hours later, the cycle would repeat.
Needless to say, after a year of living this lifestyle, I had gained a lot of weight and was at my heaviest the year I turned 24.
And that was when my now husband proposed to me.
We sat together facing the sea, during a church camp at a seaside hotel. We looked at the ocean and talked about how the waves crashed under us and had their energy dissipated when they flowed into the circle-shaped cement blocks beneath us. Pretty unromantic topics, actually.
Suddenly, he proceed to ask me what did I see in our future, and I couldn’t remember what I said at that point, probably thinking hard about what he meant.
What a ad-hoc question, I thought to myself.
He went on to say that he envisioned us together and then took out a red box from his pocket, opened it, and revealed a diamond ring.
I was speechless for a good while, and when I came back to my senses I said yes, shakily.
I would spare the lovey details of our conversation, but the gist of it is that he decided to make a lifetime commitment to me when I was a really chubby girl, double chin and all.
And he was fit, being in his early twenties, so the contrast was clear when we were together.
Looking back, in my opinion, the me from that time was the least attractive I had ever been in my entire adult life.
Yet, it didn’t bother my husband then.
The wedding took place a year after that and thankfully, I managed to lose the weight on time for me to fit my wedding dress and look decently sized in photos. I have also moved on from that job to another which I am happier with.
I never really thought much about it till recently, as we approach our tenth wedding anniversary this coming September, now with three young children added to our life together.
His love for me was beyond skin deep, in this case, it went deeper than my appearance. He loved me for who I am, fat or thin.
Even so now, he tells me I’m beautiful whenever I ask him.
And as I get older, eventually becoming wrinkly and grey, I have the assurance that he will still love me.
And that feels, pretty good.