Friday, May 11, 2007

Well Hi Again

I sent my brother a book on photography for his 16th birthday last week. He emailed me this photo that he took with his thanks. I think he's got some promise.

Long absence from the blog, because there's too much going on in my head to properly record it. Swirling thoughts that don't lend themselves to posting, little snippets.

That, and Don and I are getting married in a few weeks, on May 26. Surprise! Yes. We are travelling to New Mexico, where my parents have a vacation home, and having a tiny wedding. 16 people, including Don and me, just immediate family. A judge (the judge?) is coming to the house to marry us there. Then we are honeymooning in Seattle, where we will drink too much coffee and perhaps try for pregnancy numero dos.

I have never been a "wedding" person. This is something that's hard to explain to most people. I remember once trying to earnestly tell my former 'best friend' that I don't much care for weddings, that I would never want a big, formal affair. She dismissed the idea out of hand, saying, "Ridiculous, every girl secretly wants a big wedding!" I once suggested that Don and I might have a Halloween wedding, a costume party in which our costumes were "bride" and "groom"; she told be to stop kidding around. I wasn't. Ah well, she never really got me, I guess . As little girls, my sister and I didn't play "bride". I have never fantasized about walking down the aisle, matching bridesmaid dresses, Pachelbel's Canon in D. I have never craved being the center of attention.

I don't know why, but I seem to be missing some crucial gene that makes it desirable to spend all of one's money (or one's parents', or go into massive debts) on one day. One day! That guests may or may not remember fondly. I've only been to one wonderful wedding, my cousin's.That you, yourself may or may not remember fondly. The hype, it is so huge. This is "YOUR day!": to get whatever you want, to look beautiful, to be the star. "Once in a lifetime!"... so they say. For about half, actually, according to the statistics.

Don and I always wanted a small, small wedding. His idea of small is just the two of us. Mine is to include at least our parents, because getting married without the parents implies that we're eloping, running away, that we don't have their approval and their blessing. I tossed some ideas around with my mother during our December trip to Big Bend, but it wasn't until I announced my pregnancy in early March that the wedding plans took off. Mainly this was because of my Dad, who after recovering from the shock of impending grand-parenthood decided that we needed to plan this wedding NOW. You know, before I got all big and pregnant-looking. Before having a kid out of "wedlock". Speaking of which, wedLOCK? Who on earth came up with that phrase? Don and I got a kick out of calling it our "shotgun wedding", seeing as we've been engaged for ... 2 years now?

Me: Really, I'm fine with it just being me, Don, and you guys.
Dad: And the uncle, aunt, cousins, and partners right?
Me: Umm, of course. That's what I meant, silly me.

So between my parents and Don's (!!!), one paternal uncle, his three kids (my first cousins), two partners/spouses, one baby, one maternal uncle (!!!) and his daughter, and of course my brother and sister, we have fourteen guests: flying in from Texas, Michigan, Illinois, California. I'm seriously touched that so many people would go so far out of their way, on such short notice; to be told about a May wedding in March. Don's parents I never expected to come. They just don't travel anymore; Don's been telling me for a long time that they wouldn't be able to come unless we had the wedding in their backyard, or something. And yet, they are bravely, stoically making the trip. As are my uncle and cousin on my mom's side, whom I've never seen outside of their own state before. They've never travelled on our account, before. Hence the exited exclamation points previously.

My parents, bless them, have done about 95% of the planning and logistics for this. First because I was in the exhausting first weeks of pregnancy when all you seem to be able to do is sleep, perchance to wake up and eat something. Then, because I was blindsided by the miscarriage and its aftermath. Now, I'm so exited about this. Apparently it IS possible to have an unusual, noncommercial wedding; it just requires examination of every "tradition" for personal value.

Does a frilly white cake mean something to us? Hell no. Chocolate anything does, though... and cupcakes, and tirimisu. Do we want the traditionsDo we actually want "attendants"-- bridesmaids, groomsmen, flower girls? For that matter, do we need a procession or even an "aisle"? In this case, no and no. No pomp, no circumstance, no 'here comes the bride...' Casual is the name of this game: casual, meaningful, and intimate. And yet I've bought a white dress, and a slightly poofy one at that. White is a really good color for me. And any dress I wear has to be full in the skirt because of the way I'm built, which is generous on the bottom. Sleek, straight dresses don't work on me; they bulge at the hips and look rediculous. Also, I wanted there to be something, some little part, that still connects with main-stream wedding culture. Some indication in the photos that this was, indeed, a wedding and not merely a family reunion.

So, world, that's my big announcement. In 2 weeks and 1 day, Don and I will make the quantum leap from shackin' up to legally wed. I'll post pictures when we get back from the honeymoon.


ayla said...

Congratulations!!! I can't wait to see pictures! I don't know if you're going to want to honor your lost child or not at the wedding, and I hesitate to bring it up because I don't want to be insensitive. But if you do, I have some ideas that I used in my wedding (which was traditional, sort of) that I'd be willing to share with you.

Oh, my rehearsal dinner was a pot-luck cookout, and my reception was basically a huge dinner party--no dancing. Basically I just wanted to throw a huge party and have my guests enjoy themselves, and I've heard over and over how much fun they had, even ten months later!

I love weddings! They're so much Fun!!!

Mara said...

Thanks Ayla! I don't think we'll be doing anything special in memory of Little Grain of Rice at the wedding, especially as most people don't know anything about it and I prefer it that way.

Our "reception" also is just going to be dinner at the house; I totally know what you mean about that!

Bella said...

I wanna see pics!!!! our wedding dinner was buffet texas style. outdoors at the park, shredded brisket...yummy. ask ben, he was there! good luck sweetie, i'm so very happy for you!! yay!!!

Benjamin said...

Congrats, Mara! I am very happy for you! New Mexico is a beautiful place to get married ... and conceive. ;) I wish you all the best! Give Don my fond regards! This is simply wonderful news!

P.S. Will you play "You Shook Me All Night Long" at your wedding?

Mara said...

Thanks you guys. Pictures will definitely be here afterwards. I think the music will be tending more towards classical than heavy metal, but perhaps...

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