Monday, May 17, 2010

Open Hearts

What no one tells you about when you're planning a wedding is the post-nuptial depression. The UPS man no longer comes to my house. I'm no longer planning the specialest of occasions where just about all the people I care most about in this world will be in one place to celebrate with me my blessing in finding the one person I wanted to share my life with. I am no longer a bride.

And let me tell you, right now I got a bit of the sads.

W Day was hands down the best day of my life thus far, as I feel it should be. My heart was so full that it practically started spilling out of me. I felt like I was going to burst from it. I was overwhelmed by the love and support from family and friends, many of whom had traveled great distances to be there. It was a perfect day full of special moments, laughs, tears, dancing and oh so much fun.

How does one top that? I mean, I know it's possible. Deep down, I do know that. But at the same time, how is it possible to achieve that high, that same feeling of supreme happiness, pure joy and bliss?

I don't know (ok, I have an idea, but that conversation is not happening yet), but I am going to do my damndest.

One thing about getting married is it really makes you think about what it is to be wife. It's a word full of connotations and cultural expectations. It is a word that is as different as every woman that owns it. I had to figure out what it meant to me. Is it letting DH take care of me financially and making big decisions for me? No. I'm too independent and opinionated for that. Barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen? Hell no. Well, I like to cook. So maybe that part.

To me, being a wife is just adding another level to who I already am as a person. Not giving up who I am. But sharing it. And even opening myself up for more growth. Shelley was the first I knew to really have the best words for how I felt about becoming a wife. So we took what she had found - because DH shared my feelings for what it meant to get married - and included it in our ceremony:

Because you will be safe in marriage, you can risk; because you have been promised a future, you can take extraordinary chances. Because you know you are loved, you can step beyond your fears; because you have been chosen, you can transcend your insecurities. You can make mistakes, knowing the other will be there to catch you. And because mistakes and risks are the very essence of change, in marriage you will expand to your fullest capacity. Within the shelter of marriage, you will continue to grow and develop, so you can discover your individual paths and offer your gifts back to each other and the world. Marriage, then, makes you free - to see, to be seen, to love. Your souls are protected, so your hearts can open.

That is what being a wife is to me. I loved this because it says I am not the stereotype. I love how it says I can catch DH if he falls just as much as he can catch me. I love how it declares you are a pair of individuals, and you don't have to give up that individuality just because you're married because it is the individuality that what you loved about each other from the beginning.

It's been a subtle shift. So subtle that I almost hadn't noticed it. At first I thought married life wasn't too different than our pre-married life (given that we lived together before we got married) other than the new rings we wear on our left hands. But then I noticed how the bond between us feels even more solid, more secure. It's hard to describe. I've got an alliance in this life that will give me immunity and safety when I need it most. My soul is protected, and my heart is open.


Anonymous said...

Damn Becky, That's perfect.

After almost 18 years of marriage, I've almost forgotten the fear, the insecurity, and the possiblity of our growth as a couple. Thank you for the reminder.

twononblondes said...

So you basically made me cry when you described your wedding day. And I do.not.cry. Also, don't let the post-wedding sads get to you. I had a friend who had post-nuptial depression and repeatedly told her hubby that her life is over now because she had nothing else to look forward to. I doubt you would ever be that girl so you've got that going for you. :)