WED­DINGS

BELLI, AN EN­TRE­PRE­NEUR, AND KARIS, A BANKER AT GOLD­MAN SACHS IN SIN­GA­PORE, TIED THE KNOT AT MANILA CATHE­DRAL, IN THE HEART OF THE WALLED CITY OF INTRAMUROS.

Town & Country (Philippines) - - CONTENTS / APRIL -

Is­abel Recto Jal­buena weds Karis Sese Napa.

WERE THERE SPARKS WHEN YOU FIRST

MEt? I was fresh out of col­lege in 2008 when I joined my col­leagues and their friends for happy hour. Karis sat be­side me and in­tro­duced him­self, and I left shortly af­ter. When­ever I ask him about that night, he says I seemed un­in­ter­ested in small talk. I never told him this, but I had watched him en­ter the room and took men­tal notes of ev­ery de­tail. We ex­changed only three or four sen­tences, but I al­ready had the im­pres­sion that he was dif­fer­ent—a cut above the rest. We didn’t see each other again un­til 2013, and for some rea­son, there was this feel­ing of com­fort and joy when I saw him. my shoul­ders re­laxed, and I was smil­ing from ear to ear, al­most as though my body was say­ing, “fi­nally!” This time around, we con­nected, and it was so un­like the very first meet­ing. I found out that he had been

based in Sin­ga­pore since 2011, but that short en­counter im­me­di­ately turned into con­stant com­mu­ni­ca­tion and count­less Skype calls and week­end vis­its. WHAT DO YOU AP­PRE­CI­ATE MOST ABOUT EACH

OTHER? Un­con­di­tional love is a term tossed around quite of­ten, but Karis has made this real for me. Co­in­ci­den­tally, Karis says that what he ap­pre­ci­ates most about me is that I make him feel loved ev­ery sin­gle day. God is at the very cen­ter of our mar­riage, and this is the big­gest fac­tor to our re­la­tion­ship’s suc­cess. An­other fac­tor is our mu­tual re­spect for each other’s iden­ti­ties, be­liefs, and ideas. Un­con­di­tional love, re­spect, and a lot of laugh­ter make up our re­la­tion­ship! HOW

DID KARIS PROPOSE? We were in New York and had been dat­ing long-dis­tance for some time, so this 10-day trip was the long­est we’d spent to­gether in the same coun­try. We had been talk­ing about the fu­ture early on and knew that we wanted to get mar­ried even­tu­ally, but I never ex­pected the tim­ing. Our itin­er­ary was filled with sched­uled shows and res­tau­rant reser­va­tions, but Karis man­aged to trick me into a lit­tle boat ride in Cen­tral park. his pro­posal was per­fect—a beau­ti­ful set­ting, su­per ro­man­tic, and only ours. No photos, no wit­nesses. my only wish is that I had given my­self more time to bask in the mo­ment. I was so sur­prised that my an­swer to his ques­tion was, “Yes, but did you ask my par­ents?” WHAT DO YOU FIND MOST EN­JOY­ABLE IN YOUR NEW LIVES AS A MAR­RIED COU­PLE? We love be­ing part­ners in ev­ery­thing and be­ing to­gether in find­ing mean­ing in this life. Be­fore we were mar­ried, the mo­ments that de­fined our re­la­tion­ship were the big ges­tures like vis­it­ing each other in Sin­ga­pore and manila. Now our defin­ing mo­ments are the ones that we share just be­tween us— the in­side jokes, wak­ing up next to each other, the way we show support for one an­other’s en­deav­ors, and tak­ing turns pick­ing up af­ter our beloved corgi, hamil­ton. We look for­ward to more mile­stones to­gether and mak­ing many more of th­ese mean­ing­ful mo­ments, big and small—like rais­ing a fam­ily, vis­it­ing new places, start­ing new projects, and of course, more laugh­ter along the way.

Edited by Man­ica C. Tiglao Pho­to­graphs by Pat Dy

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