A Vision of Ourselves

Dear Husband,

By the time you come home

we have spent the day

refuting all the compliments

you now rain on us

 

We have spent half the morning trying to keep the baby out of the dog’s water bowl and the other half trying to find clothes that halfway fit because not everyone can make it through a pregnancy in fifteen pounds and our bodies are not ready for size four. We spend our energy fighting our fear and regret that we’ve done everything wrong and our horrific jealousy of our friends who seem to have gotten everything right.

Our tired eyes are glazed with the miracle that overfills our hearts and the bags beneath them are testament to our sleepless hours comforting our cold or hungry or frightened children until they fall happily back to sleep and we lay awake wondering if it will stick or if we should rouse ourselves to walk down the hall to the bathroom.

Unfinished artistry lays on the shelf where it goes untouched for days or weeks. Five minutes to sit and write is taken up with dead batteries and slow servers and a scramble to find a pen.

The living dream is everything we ever asked for. But it is everything else, too. And just because it’s perfect doesn’t mean it isn’t hard.

Vespers

Near the end of my junior year of high school, I auditioned for and was somehow miraculously accepted into the A Capella Choir. Just in time to participate not only in the regular yearly performances but also, greatest of all, in that year’s concert tour in England. The experience of being part of A Capella was the most rewarding in all my high school career. When I say I was raised in New York, I sometimes want to add that when it comes down to it, I grew up in London. What I mean by that is that during the years I lived here, I had a week long adventure there during which my entire life changed.

It’s sort of stock advice, but I’m serious:

Travel. Study. See the world.

Your experiences will develop for you new and more glorious senses. Experiencing other cultures, seeing new horizons, you can’t help but learn about yourself and grow as a person.

The life altering effects of that choir trip didn’t end upon landing back in America, nor even upon graduation from high school two and a half months later. Because of the friendships forged during our choir year and solidified in London, I eventually met, fell in love with, and got married to my husband.

So, back to present day:

Every year at Xmas time, A Capella does a Vespers Concert.  I have sung as part of Vespers three times.

1. My senior year.

2. The following year for the 75th Vespers Concert & Alumni Reunion

3. Five years ago for the 85th Vespers Concert & Alumni Reunion.

Today would have been my fourth year. This year marks the 90th.

And I had been planning to go, and sing, and celebrate my favourite experience from the 90s.

However, due to what I can only snark about being a huge lack of communication skills, very little information about the organization of the event was passed around, and just a few weeks ago I finally got the info about signing up (or rather, the email address to which to send my new contact info so that sign up info could then be sent to me). Well, that didn’t happen. Whoever was responsible for getting info out to us failed miserably. I never did manage to get signed up. I’m upset about this. And I’m upset they wanted us to pay to participate. At the busiest, brokest-assed time of year, when I’m struggling to pay bills, and celebrate the holidays in some vague way, and not lose my mind over the worst anniversary in my personal history. They suddenly wanted us to pay admission to a concert we were In.

Just, No.

Am I regretting missing the concert? O yes. In that ‘it hasn’t happened yet I can still change my mind’ panic that happens whenever I force myself to miss something that I’ve been planning on for months. I’m way not into the Holiday this year. I can’t muster the excitement I always tried to find in The Magic of Christmas. This is, in my opinion, the absolute worst time of year. To force myself to sit through the concert, hopefully without sobbing (out of personal grief or hilarity over how that one teacher’s solo sounds like he’s saying, “Come for Tea, My Peeeeooople!”), would be cruel to myself and those around me, as well as a waste of an afternoon.

So this evening while my fellow singers are belting out The Messiah or whichever traditionals they picked this year I will be enjoying the harvest of those friendships, built all those years ago, in my own house, with my husband, sister in law (a fellow A Capellian), and some friends, playing D&D, and chilling with our dog.

Blessed Solstice, bitches.

Six Months

Six months ago, today, we got married.

DSC03434 (2) (800x676) (photo by Steve Badgley, edited by moi)

I prefer celebrating the day that Nic and I became a couple, but I’m really glad we’re married now, so celebrating a half-year-wedding anniversary might be silly, but as I like celebrating things, and our relationship is something I really really like celebrating, Happy Half Year to Us!

People ask how we like married life. A lot of them seem to assume something has dramatically changed by us getting married. I think that’s pretty funny. We’ve been together officially since November 2011. Our relationship has grown and deepened ever since we met, back in July 2009. So by us getting married, I’d say, the only thing that’s changed is that our relationship has gone into a supreme level of fantasticness and officialness. O, and I now have a new last name. That’s pretty much it. That’s marriage right there. The ultimate edition of what beautiful life we already had. And it just keeps getting prettier.

Happy Demi-Anniversary to Us!

The Art of Believing in Happiness

These past few years have been an astonishing jumble of happiness and quite mad events.

So many misadventures preceded this time in which I have* loved Nic, that, primarily, I am often quite confused at the fact that I’m actually getting out of life exactly what I want. I still expect, almost daily, although to a lesser extent than I used to, that I will wake up one day and find that all this has been a dream. That is how it has seemed for these years in which I have finally found my happiness.

How did all this happen? How did I get all this? All this . . . ‘stuff’ that I actually want??? How did I find my joy?

It seems like a miracle some days. I worked for it, but that makes it no less miraculous. Sometimes, things just don’t work out no matter how hard you try. But here we are, day after day, creating this beautiful life, together, with a common vision, and a lot of laughter. When so many things have gone wrong in my past, it is a surprise when I get what I have really always wanted, but perhaps forgot I was eligible for:

A loving, caring, and hilarious husband. A fluffy, loving, caring, and hilarious dog. A home to share with them both. A career – not just a string of jobs. The potential for motherhood.

As you know, not all the past three years’ events have been made of happiness, but overall – despite depression, and difficult times, and heartbreak – overall, I am certainly on the Throne of All My Happiest Days So Far ™. And as with all adventures, the greatest Life Adventures do not, and cannot, exist if there is not some goal that is yet insurmountable. With all this joy, we’re going to keep making more of it. We’re going to keep on adventuring. 

I am going to believe in miracles. I am going to believe in hard earned joy. I am going to believe in happiness. 

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*have Known that I did. we’d been friends for years, but a courtship never really occurred to me until one day, out of nowhere, life shouted at me clear as day, You love this man! I’ll tell you about that another time. it’s a pretty cool story. And involves books and continents and adventure.

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