What's the secret to a long-lasting marriage?
Club MemorABLE members Mr and Mrs Teo share their love story this Valentine’s Day
It is a delight watching Mr Teo and his wife of nearly 70 years, Mrs Teo, in Apex Harmony Lodge’s weekly virtual sessions in Club MemorABLE, a dementia-friendly social club. When their favourite songs play, they groove and sing along in tandem. After all, it does take two to tango.
Not a pair to celebrate Valentine’s Day, anniversaries or birthdays, Mr Teo and Mrs Teo show their love for each other in their daily lives – giving each other massages, telling jokes to cheer up their spouse, and telling each other how much they love them.
“I was standing outside (now defunct) Roxy Theatre when I saw her sitting at the nearby coffee shop. I thought she was rather beautiful so I walked up to her and asked for her name,” Mr Teo shared. He was then 20 years old and Mrs Teo, a few years younger. He decided then that Mrs Teo was the woman he wanted to spend the rest of his life with, and the rest is history.
Valentine’s Day date ideas
“We used to go to the Capitol Blue Room to dance a few times a week,” Mrs Teo chimed in. From having two left feet, the couple grew to love dancing, picking up the waltz, rumba, samba, foxtrot, and the list goes on. “I was the one who taught him to dance!”
For avid sports fan Mr Teo, watching soccer matches at the old National Stadium held some of their most memorable date nights. “Just hearing the crowd cheer for the national team is amazing,” exclaimed Mr Teo. “We can’t find that kind of atmosphere anymore.” After the matches, they frequented their favourite dinner spot – the old Airport Road Food Centre – where the two foodies indulged in popular hawker fare.
Staying active and contributing in Club MemorABLE
Despite being diagnosed with dementia, Mr and Mrs Teo continue to seek activities that match their interests. These days, they do not travel out much and date nights out have made way for gardening activities in their own home. Born with green fingers, Mr and Mrs Teo enjoy being in each other’s company as they tend to the seeds sowed in their garden. Even after diagnosis, they relish in the joys of gardening while utilising their horticultural skills and abilities. At the same time, it provides the couple with a therapeutic space to relax in their golden years.
Mr and Mrs Teo also stay socially and emotionally connected to the community in Club MemorABLE’s weekly sessions. During the sessions, they participate in interactive and cognitively-stimulating games, song and exercise with other club members, while also co-creating content for future sessions. “I like the sessions because they help me stay active,” Mr Teo grinned. His favourite session was the travel-themed session as he got to reacquaint himself with the different cultures and practices around the world. Mrs Teo, on the other hand, looks forward to singing along to her favourite oldies each week.
Everyday is Valentine’s Day
The secret to a long-lasting marriage? Mr Teo giggled, “She’s beautiful and hardworking. I am happy to always be with her, listen to her and eat good food with her.” Mrs Teo echoed her affections for her husband while caressing his arm. For Mr and Mrs Teo, this Valentine’s Day will be no different from any other day. Even after seven decades of marriage, their love continues to grow.
(Photo source: Debra Teo)
Club MemorABLE is a dementia-friendly social and activities club for everyone to learn, connect and have fun! To join Club MemorABLE, go to https://bit.ly/memorableclub