Let me get my thoughts in order.
One of the things that I've come to realize while loving someone who is different from you, in a cultural and religious manner, is that there is more to relationship problems than just "You don't understand me" or the kind of petty jealousies that fuel little (and big) arguments. Even the basic fundamentals of what's right and what's wrong can be compromised, as well as large theological and theoretical concepts that can threaten to swallow you whole.
I guess the funny thing is that I never expected to fall in love with such a person in the first place. In fact, that wasn't my intention at all when I came to Singapore. But being with him is like living in a world with endless possibilities and light, and I can't imagine anything more wonderful right now that to just be here, with him. And I'm thinking that maybe God knew what He was doing, because I remember praying desperately to Him about a week before I met The Boyfriend, and asking Him to please, please bring this person I would spend the rest of my life with to me - the sooner the better. It was one of those prayers made when you're at the lowest of the low, when you're alone and you don't know where to go anymore, just an aimless wanderer trudging through life. You get the idea.
But mind you, it's not easy being with this guy. You have so many things to remember and to think about. Even the mere concept of going out for dinner is already limited, because seriously, how many halal restaurants can one go to after awhile? And while I'm happy that he's educated and flexible in a lot of the little things, there are certain moments where it's easier to argue rather than quietly give in. And then of course there's the parents (his!), the society (his!), the will you/won't you convert question - there are so many things to think about that it's clearly easier to just quit. But we can't. We won't. We're in this together.
Which then brings me to the other highlight of the day - we watched this Pakistani film called Khuda Ke Liye (In the Name of God) earlier, which apparently was the highest grossing Pakistani film of all time. It was released last year, to much acclaim and to much religious grumblings - I believe even a fatwa was issued against it. It highlighted a lot of issues that Pakistanis around the world and in Pakistan were facing, and of course the theme of interracial love was also highlighted. There was actually a scene where one of the main characters, Mansood, was fighting with his American girlfriend, Janie, and we both looked at each other and said, "Hey, that sounds like us!"
We are made of the win.
But I guess at the end of the day, the film was one of those "silent waters run deep" kind of film that stays with you even after you leave the cinema. For me, I guess it just brought home how difficult things can be by staying with this man. And a part of me has to admit that I am frightened - this has the potential of being bigger than I am, and I long to go back to the petty arguments and jealousies that I know a lot of my other friends have experienced in the past. (And I mean that in the nicest way possible, but seriously now, I would rather deal with things like flirting or small jealousies or quietness rather than his parents hating the idea of me just because of who I am and what I am perceived to be.) But at the same time, I also realize that this is a potentially good thing - it can show more people about how Islam is a religion of peace, that not all Pakistanis are religious fanatics, and that yes, they are actually quite logical and intelligent when they want to be.
But right now, the film has settled into my psyche and won't let go. And I guess it's because there are all these thoughts in my head and I wish there was someone to talk to about it. But he's asleep now, and it's almost 3 AM and yet...