Tags: marriage, weddings, widows
I was having lunch with a colleague of mine recently, an older woman, about the age of my parents. Her husband recently died suddenly, leaving her a widow. She is a very positive person as I know her and she was grateful that he went peacefully. From what I recall, she was back to work pretty quickly.
This happened about a year ago, so I’m unsure of what stage she is in in the grieving process, but something she said struck a chord with me. I don’t even remember what we were talking about or what she said after this one line — that’s just how much it stuck out to me. I still haven’t completely digested it yet, but hopefully in writing this I will be able to unpack the idea a bit.
She referred to her husband by saying, “Back when I was married…” For some reason, perhaps because I am young, I never really thought about the “’til death do us part” part of the vows in any real detail. It’s a hard idea to digest at this age. I’ve always thought of this phrase in the light of both of us being old and never thinking we weren’t married even when one of us passed on. Perhaps it depends on the age that it happens, but it is weird to think about being separated from your life partner by something beyond your control. Of course, the alternative means of being separated are clearly unsavory, but I just never thought too deeply about separation by natural means.
I hope I never have to think too much about it, but in studying my colleague’s grieving process from afar, it seems that she has gotten comfortable with her new reality. Though she may refer to herself as being unmarried, it doesn’t mean she doesn’t still love and miss her late husband, but she’s not living in a fantasy world either. I think it shows great strength and I admire her for being so grounded in a tough reality. I hope, when the time comes for my husband to be and I to part ways, hopefully we will be very old, but we’ll leave each other knowing that our love lives on.
A little musical complement to this post below.
Tags: brides, event planning, RSVP etiquette, technology, weddings
When I first got engaged, I, like many brides, had a few grandiose ideas of what I was going to do for my wedding. Mine, however, weren’t in imitation of any movie I had seen, any fairy tale I had read. I was realistic in terms of understanding my financial limitations. No, instead I had these great ideas that somehow everything related to this wedding was going to be high tech. After all, this is the digital age, is it not?
So I went about creating a website that would connect directly to an automated to-do list and guest list tracking system, and magically everyone would reply online. Guests would also use the power of Google Maps to get directions to the venue, rather than the traditional directions card included in the invitation. I snail mailed Save the Date magnets with the link to the web site, and proceeded to mail out invitations the old fashioned way, with a self-addressed stamped envelope — just to be safe.
As RSVPs clog my mailbox, I keep harking back to that original idea. To date I have had 2 people RSVP online, and I totally get it. There is still this connection to the idea that things need to be tangible to be real. In truth, a wedding is not something you typically just put up as a Facebook event. Those RSVPs matter and have dollars attached to them. We have not reached a point in our technologically advanced world where invitations and RSVPs can be done solely online, where we trust the click of a mouse as our word that we will attend an event. Any event planner, any online communications specialist will tell you that there is still a struggle to get online actions to become offline actions.
But we aren’t too far off, and someone has to be an early adopter and give things a shot. I will still use the online platforms available to me to push out pertinent information (aka pester my guests about RSVPing ) and I’ll be shocked by any email alerts telling me people have RSVPed online.
So if you are looking for me, I’ll be sitting by the mailbox, waiting.
Tags: 2012, goals, New Year's Resolutions, weddings
Hello, and welcome to 2012! By now you have hopefully recovered from any New Year’s antics (or anti-antics) you have taken part in and are coming back down to the reality that is before you. Those plans for New Year’s Resolutions kick into high gear. Gyms will be overcrowded for the next few months. The produce and diet sections of the supermarket will be packed, while fried chicken joints will see a temporary and barely noticeable decrease in business. But this stuff is never long-lasting. Old habits die really hard.
When I look at my New Year’s Resolutions from last year (after I write them, I do not revisit them as I hope to have internalized them/forget I actually wrote them down). I did much better in fulfilling my 2010 resolutions than I did my 2011, because they were more tactical items like finding a new job and moving in with my boyfriend. Last year’s resolutions were broader scope, true changes in how I live my life, and having started the year without an engagement ring on my finger, it has proven difficult to keep some of these resolutions (namely, giving more and spending “wisely”). My third resolution — take better care of myself — I think I did okay on. I did invest a few months in personal training, have always regularly seen my doctors, and do my best to maintain my skin, hair, and nails.
It’s really my last resolution that bothers me a bit. I’m not sure where my mind was when I wrote it — “Live in the moment more”. Hm… I think now I take what is likely a different spin on what this means. I think it is more about dropping pettiness and jealousy; not taking things personally — being more carefree. This is something I still need to work on.
But looking to 2012, I’m going to have to spin all of my New Year’s Resolutions of 2011 on their backs and live in the moment more, even if this conflicts with spending wisely. 2012 will brings lots of weddings and related festivities, and I’m sure I am in for a few more surprises.
So my real goal for 2012 is to enjoy all of the parties and trips that have already occupied my calendar and my wallet and just go with it. At the end of 2012, I will be a married woman and I will look back at my wedding, those of my friends, and all the adventures in between and be able to say, “Now that’s living in the moment. And now, let’s catch up on some bills.”