The anniversary gift for my husband

I remember when I was young, I saw some long-time couples celebrating their wedding anniversaries simply by having a dinner out together, not even getting each other a present.  When I asked why they didn’t offer present for each other, they said they had been together for so long that the gifts had no much meaning to them anymore.  I didn’t quite understand back then, in my small little brain I only judged them for giving excuses to not try to keep their marriage alive.  I remember I said to myself, “I am not going to become them when I have a husband…”

Time flies, I have been married to this wonderful man for 6 years, and today is our anniversary.  I want to offer him a gift.

My husband has been a great supporter in my vision of life, he offers me freedom in doing what I think is important to the community as well as in my life.  My vision is to spread the teachings of yoga and the message of love and peace.

Because of my teaching schedule, I often spend time away from home, away from my beloved husband.  This is the first anniversary we spent apart, I was so busy with my work that I had not prepared any gifts to him prior to leaving the country.

Having been with my husband for 8 years, I started to understand the saying of the old couples, that gifts are not as representative as before.   Both my husband and I have noticed a lot of our wonderful gifts often end up in the drawer and later become just another junk in the house.  Above all, we value our love for each other more than the material gift.

Thanks for the support of the yoga community in Asia, I started travel more and more and this year is one of the most intense travel year for me.  There have been days which I had to fly to one city per weekend for the whole month, and there have been days which I travel back to back for 3 week, and there have been days which I traveled to 3 cities in one week.

After all these intensive travelling, I went back home for about a week recently, and I have noticed something subtle has taken place.

My husband and I used to sit together, chat and just hang out.  We enjoyed each other’s presence a lot.  This time, after all the long trips away from home, I noticed we didn’t talk as much, I guess my husband was also at his peak month and he was very busy with his own work.  I noticed he spent more time looking at his cell phone, facebook, and the news more than before.

I didn’t blame him, I simply observed.  To be honest, deep down I felt a bit disappointed for coming home and saw him having more interests in others’ life on Facebook or on the news then my life.  But I just continued to observe, observe our interaction, observe my thinking, my feeling etc.  Through my observation, I noticed because of all the time away from home, I left him in the house alone and turning to the phone was the only way to comfort him.  So when I came back home, it’s not easy to turn around this newly developed habit.  I realized this is not his fault, his action was a result of my traveling.  I know I have to take partial responsibility for this.

Asking myself, what is my priority in my life?  If time is limited, what is the most important thing for me?  I would say it’s my spiritual practice.  I ask myself, “how do I define a spiritual practice?”  I would say it’s about how I live my life fully and wholesomely.  Then I know my spiritual practice includes harmony with my husband, my family, myself, and my teaching.  These areas have to be balanced in order for me to master my practice.

Yes, I don’t believe in offering a gift just for the sake of anniversary.  But I would still like to offer my beloved husband a gift, which is:

  • I practice minimizing comments (i.e. nagging) unless it’s being asked by him
  • I practice rearranging my schedule so I will be home at least 2-4 weeks in between programs

I think this will be the best gift for my beloved husband and for myself.

Although we are apart from each other on our 6th anniversary today, my heart feels closest to him ever.  I am so thankful to have my husband in my life.  He has definitely made me a better person.