Most of all, I remember... There wasn't a specific "Aha!" moment when Jeff and I knew we wanted to spend our lives together. We're lucky because we were both ready to find the right person and settle down when we met; Jeff had recently moved back to Austin after spending years in Chicago and D.C. for law school and clerkship, while I was all too familiar with bad dates and the anxious insecurity that comes with relationships that aren't meant to be.
When we started dating, I quickly noticed that I didn't spend my days wondering when Jeff would text or call, or worry about whether I had said all the right things at dinner the night before. He didn't make any secret of the fact that in his eyes, I could do no wrong, and that he didn't care if I wanted to wear day-old hair and flip flops to an upscale restaurant. One evening a few months in, sipping some wine on my couch after work, I asked him if he would ever consider going to China with me; I've been obsessed with the culture for years but hadn't yet been to Asia, and as an American-born Chinese man, I knew Jeff would be the perfect travel companion for my dream trip. He hesitated for a moment, and then confessed that he had already planned an entire two-week trip to Hong Kong and Shanghai for the Lunar New Year, which was still nine months away. He had booked the flights, the dinner reservations, and the hotel view overlooking Victoria Harbour so as to see the spectacular fireworks unimpeded. Wow.
An older married friend once told me that for marriage to work--to REALLY work over the long haul--both parties have to make the decision to be active participants in their relationship every day, and to give 100% to their marriage. Jeff is someone who consistently puts my feelings and needs before his own, and I try to do the same for him. He is the most kind, thoughtful, generous, and wonderful man I've ever known (besides my Daddy!), and the idea of being married to him feels like the most natural thing in the world.