Yesterday... I don't even know where to begin to describe it... it was a beautiful day - and in some ways it took me even deeper inside of myself - and I have learned to love those moments recently... I am all for learning to see my own shadow right now...
Anyway - I suppose the best place to start is at the beginning - of the day, that is. As I was really stressing over directions and such... I was going to the wedding of 2 dear friends in Connecticut - where I have never been before... and - I stress big time over two things - being late, or, getting lost. The day held the chances for both... so... I was frazzled - to put it kindly. And an instant message interrupted my mind jumbled chaotic flow - and it was a welcome relief in many ways. And as I told my friend what it was I was doing with the rest of the day - I was startled by a question - a question I had not even thought to consider asking myself... but she knows me all too well... "Are you going to be okay?"
Wow. All things in my life considered these days... it was a very logical question... and as I read it... typed out with such love - I was startled by my response: "of course!" And - I had not even thought of it, the day or meaning of the day, like that. Imagine that.
My day progressed... I got myself ready and I left... I made my way onto the Ferry and left my car. I sat down in the window lined room with all of the other passengers... all the seats with tables right at the windows were already taken - so I sat somewhere with the next best view, on the end - where a window was still at my side. Across from me - at one of the seats with a table, sat a man, and his daughter. No wedding ring graced his finger... the little girls age I guessed between 3 and 4... she was certainly hyper enough for 3, but well spoken enough for 4... he offered me a seat with them... "for a table for your book..." that I was reading, he said. I smiled and assured him I was comfortable where I was... and I continued to read. Though, my attention was constantly drawn to them... watching the wonderful interactions of father and child... something I don't get to see my children have very often these days.. (they see Andrew often - I just try to be scarce - otherwise their time together is tainted by me... they come to me for stuff, when - it is their time with him... etc...)
Sitting there... watching that... I began to take stock of my own life - and my identity (identities) - in all their glory... sitting there - on that Ferry... no longer a wedding ring on my finger... no children to hold my attention and chase in circles at my side... alone - just me - Who was I?
In that moment... who was I? Who was I being perceived as by others on that boat? With no indications of my life by my side... that was one of those moments of fear for me... I want an identity. And so... I sat with those thoughts for that moment.. for the day...
The Ferry docked - and the next of the days journeys began for me.
As I parked at the church... other stresses began to rise in my head... it is a wedding... would I be the only one in black? I felt like I looked great (albeit - a bit self conscious with how low my top dipped...) yet - Andrew (who saw me as I left, to spend his day with the kids) had placed a twinge of doubt in my mind as I left the house... I was wearing black... he said.. to a wedding. Leave it to him to deflate me... (he said he didn't mean it like that...) Anyway - I walked in - a girl looked right at me and said "Oh, thank goodness, I am not the only one in black!" So... there was one stressing thing shattered for me right there... phew...
Time went by - and Chris (the groom) appeared... natural wedding day stress, excitement, anticipation and such was in his face... (Chris - you looked great! You clean up real nice and all that!) And then... the music began - we all rose to our feet... and Kirsten (the bride) began her walk down the aisle as beautiful as always - and as stunning and radiant as a bride should be... (yes, I saw your lip quivering! Darn near made me cry right there!!)
As the ceremony began... and their vows were exchanged - I thought back to Niki's words from the morning... "you okay?" echoed around in my head for a moment... as I struggled to grab a memory of my own wedding ceremony out of my head... but this was SO different... in SO many ways...
Their support and love for one another was (is) undeniable... from the gazes they pass to each other... to the looks in their eyes when one mentions the other's name... the loving way she touches the back of his neck, and plays with his hair as they kiss...
A question was asked... "can you believe in something you cannot see?" The Pastor (Pastor? that right for your church guys?) answered the question as fast as she asked it - yet I wanted to stand and interject my thoughts... How can it even be questioned whether or not it can be seen? Love may not be something you can hold in a neat little box in the palm of your hand... but it can certainly be seen. Just look in their eyes, as they gaze into the eyes of the other.. and you see - Love.
I am tempted to end this here - with a dedication to my dear friends - Chris & Kirsten... however - take note of that, and I will keep going... I have to get these thoughts out as they come, you know.
The day moved on... eventually finding my way back to the Ferry.. back home.
"Is that rain out there?" The man sitting next to me asked... and to my surprise - it was. The day had been perfect, and beautiful... I was so happy it had held out... The man was trying to check the radar on his phone - but he had no service on the Ferry apparently. And mine did. So, I loaded it up and showed it to him. We had a simple conversation then... it lasted until the call to return to our cars came over the intercom. And then he said "when you get in your car now... do you have somewhere you have to be? Or, would you like to have a drink with me?"
Okay.. wait - what?!
The split second it took me to respond felt like a year... I haven't been in the position of having to flat out "turn someone down" in years. (Because I have not been asked out... in years. I did, of course - turn him down. And - not because I had somewhere I had to be...)
It took me by surprise. My mind starts reeling... you see - I don't view myself favorably like that - I think that is common, and a lot of people have an unfavorable image of themselves... Anyway... I will see myself in the mirror and think I have myself together well one day - and then, I see a picture of myself from that day - and scoff. (This is not some signal for you all to leave me any "you are pretty" comments... okay?!) (Hey... look! I said you all, not you guys!! It is starting already and I have barely started packing!)
And so... I jumped into this rationalization in my head... and once more found myself trapped in my head for the day... I had already surmised in my mind it must have been simply the cleavage showing top... (that, by that time I had grown to love during the day.. though I was still a bit self conscious... go figure..) And, maybe it was a little bit of my personality. I knew it certainly couldn't have been my looks. But then, I did wonder if I am looking better recently... my weight is finally going in the direction I have been trying to get it to go for years... a friend told me the other day how completely unsurprised he is by this - it has nothing to do with stress... it is because of my happiness. (I have not wanted to say anything, because I worry it will be thought that, I have had this begin because I am stressed or unhappy... when in fact, it is quite to the contrary...)
So... I try to give myself points for it... on more than just my personality, or my deeply dipping shirt... but that is a hard thing for me to do. After years of beating myself up over how I look... It is a very hard thing for me to do.
It will come in time... I know that. And I know that I need to relax a bit about it... and - I am trying. I promise.
Posted Date: : May 18, 2008 4:02 PM