Thursday, April 23, 2009

Life’s Most Monumental Passage - the Wedding Day

“Don’t wish me happiness--I don’t expect to be happy… it’s gotten beyond that somehow. Wish me courage and strength and a sense of humour--I will need them all”

-Anne Morrow Lindbergh.

Weddings are inordinately polar occasions. They’re illustrative of touch points in life when all is mysteriously awry, but a humble acceptance needs to ensue; calm in the midst of a whirlwind storm. And this is the screeching, indwelling pain--amid the auspicious excitement--of the Bride-to-be on her wedding day. According to biblical tradition and wisdom, she is giving up the rights to herself, her persona.

She trusts, albeit fleetingly and ever hopefully, that her husband will return to her, that which she needs--her very personal, essential person--the flower that is her heart. Her husband-to-be too, though he knows it not yet, has his own journey of giving up self to make.
He needs to do it, for himself and most certainly for his bride. And he needs to do it continuously for the marriage to be a success, and to make his bride truly happy.

Marriage is intrinsically needed by the vast majority of us, and certainly notwithstanding millions of reluctant singles. The single person often yearns like no other for marital union--the panacea toward true happiness.

There are times in life, beyond simply marriage, when things are just plainly horrible, but then there’s a paradoxically pleasant acceptance that accompanies these times. We’ve been there when we have to persist and there’s no choice but to courageously go on despite the wrenching within. Suddenly, tears come and the chest heaves in rhythmic pulses and volumes of sorrow. Weddings intuit the same sorts of emotions. Things are changing for good.

In a letter to a friend before her wedding to husband, Charles Lindbergh, Anne Morrow penned the quote at first, and one can only wonder the topsy-turvy emotional roller-coaster she was on.[1] This is reminiscent of reality.

There’s a stark, grounded wisdom in the thinking though. There’s a recognition that in all the bi-polar hopelessness of present-day mourning and inevitability, mixed with thoughts of the blissfully, ecstatic consummation to come, the world is still an ‘okay place’ to be.
Citing The Desiderata we can see:

You are a child of the universe
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.

And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.[2]

Getting back to the wedding imagery...

“Be good to each other, you two, and get to work on the singing, on the labor of love”


Copyright © 2009, S. J. Wickham. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

[1] For an implausible short piece on the sanctity of the wedding celebration try: ... this article above is somewhat inspired by this lovely short essay.
[2] Source:

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