Ah yes. The day of luuurrve. In secondary school, some of my friends and I used to exchange little cards…V-day was kind of the day to celebrate friendships. Girlfriends ruled! Then in JC, February 14th was an entertaining day just because of all the crazy, dramatic displays that some guys put up in the hopes of winning the girl of their pursuit. Roses, presents, cards and letters poured forth. I still remember turning a corner in school and almost tripping over this guy on bended knee, with a bouquet of roses in a hand and a sheet of paper in the other (from which he was reading some soppy poetry). I couldn’t believe then (and still can’t now) how silly people are willing to appear in the name of…puppy love. My CT made a neat bundle during CNY street-fest selling roses and ‘friendship braclelets’ (that year CNY was very close to V-day so one of my classmates came up with the idea. And we did make a neat little bundle.)
Then, soon enough, the day came when I had a romantic reason to celebrate Valentine’s Day. But you know what? I can’t remember how I celebrated my first Valentine’s Day with Zibin. *sheepish grin* Or the second. Since then we’ve been apart every Valentine’s Day. Sometimes, I am surprised myself when I remember that we’ve spent nearly 5 of the 7 years of our relationship on different continents.
Zibin and I have never been big on celebrations, be it our birthdays, or V-Day, or even our anniversaries… we’re not big on gift-giving either (which incidentally, is something we both appreciate. ha ha) That’s not to say I don’t enjoy receiving presents…but I don’t usually remember what gift I receive on what occassion. In all our years together, two gifts I’ve received from Zibin stand out. The first, is my 21st Birthday Present (inset) because it was so simple, and yet it spoke of how well he knew me (yah who knew FF bears and a couple of Archie comics would make me cry?). The second, was when I graduated with my M.A. degree in 2004. Zibin couldn’t attend my convocation, but he sent a letter with my parents who came. It was a simple letter which ‘narrated’ our history together from his perspective. And there were little photos that we took at the various significant points in our relationship. Again, that was all…but I was misty-eyed and sniffling by the time I finished it. And even my most recent birthday present…the Tuesdays With Morrie dvd, is such a ‘Zibin’ gift. He bought it not just because we loved it, but because it had sentimental value for us (I watched the dvd with him in Dec, and he went on to buy the book as well as buy another copy for a friend). And really, how many guys can you find who would remember your friends as well when giving you a birthday present? This may not be something all girls find desirable…but for me, I’m filled with joy whenever he opens his heart to those I love as well.
This evening, while I was having my Valentine’s Day dinner alone at home, I got an sms from Zibin asking me what the 5 love languages were. Bemused (he’s at work! why is he asking about the love languages?), I replied him. His response came back, “Thanks, darling. Coffee-talk. Hee.” I sat back and thought back to yesterday when Yiling asked me, “So, you and Zibin usually make random calls to each other?” We kind of do (not usually when he’s at work though). Esp on weekends. Several times a day usually…and the calls range from 1 min to 30mins or so each time. Add to that a spatter of smses and msn msgs, as well as the occasional video-conference…it’s little wonder that I feel so connected with him even while we’re oceans apart. It’s something so much a part of my life, I don’t think about it much. But it’s something I shouldn’t take for granted, ever.
Well, with any luck, this would be my last birthday (and maybe Valentine’s Day) that I have to spend without Zibin. I hope that he’ll be somewhere in the States this time next year, and that he’ll be able to fly up to see me *grin*. But you know what? Even if that doesn’t happen, it’s not that big a deal. Cos I’m still happy with what we’ve got. :)