This is the 127th day of our wedding.
No, I haven't been snorting the embossing powder. Nor is this about how long our actual wedding will be, though with all that is going on on our wedding day -- Chinese groom's games, a tea ceremony, a bedecken (veiling) ceremony, the signing of the ketubah (the wedding contract), a Jewish wedding ceremony, cocktails, dinner, dancing (yes, I'll be blogging about all of these) -- it might seem like we'd need hundreds of days to get through all the activities.
It's the 127th day of wedding in the sense that Anita Diamant writes about in the introduction to The New Jewish Wedding:
In Judaism there is a willingness to ignore the boundaries between everyday life and holiness. Thus your wedding begins when you first announce your decision to marry and includes every aspect of planning and preparing for the big day. Even arguments about who gets invited and what gets served for dinner are part of the festivities. Nor is your wedding over until the last thank-you note is written, the last photograph is pasted in the scrapbook, and the last bill is paid.
I think there's something so beautiful about the sentiment that a wedding is not a single "perfect day." Instead, it's a long process that begins with the moment you declare your commitment to marry (May in our case), encompasses actions and decisions both significant and banal, and involves discussion, compromise, and community.
And as I reflect on this, it occurs to me that my favorite part of our wedding so far has not been the dress shopping, the party planning, or even the crafting -- in other words, all the things you do for the actual day of the wedding. Don't get me wrong, those have been awesome. I love myself a haute bargain with a side of Gocco! But what I've really enjoyed about this process are the more ordinary decisions Mr. HC and I are making that have nothing to do with the actual wedding day itself, the small ways in which we are beginning to build a life and a family together.
For example, ever since I started my conversion classes this fall, we have been making every attempt to have shabbat dinners together on Friday nights. In the Jewish culture, the sabbath begins on Friday evening at sunset, and this day of rest is kicked off by a family meal. Ours are nothing fancy or super-observant -- I'm ashamed to admit that we don't even own shabbat candles (which you're supposed to light before sunset), and it's possible that we sometimes even postpone our meal until Saturday (oy!). Just a homemade dinner, challah (you gotta give props to a culture that ritualizes its carb-loading), and a moment of togetherness and quiet conversation.
It might seem a bit odd to be kvelling (that's "beaming" for you non-Yiddish speakers ;-) ) over a dinner date. But Mr. HC leads the frenetic life of a med student, which means usually he's either at the hospital or sleeping. Meanwhile, I'm wedded (so to speak) to my computer and my books. And did I mention that we live 2.5 hours from one another and live together only Fridays through Mondays? So it's just a real pleasure to be able to reconnect with each other over a meal.
[Speaking of a dinner worth kvelling over, here's the feast that Mr. HC prepared for us on Rosh Hashanah. He made brisket and matzoh ball soup from scratch! And there were roasted potatoes, noodle kugel, apples with honey (for a sweet New Year), salad, and a giant round challah. Is he a balabusto or what?]
If you think of your wedding as starting from the moment of your engagement, what have you enjoyed the most? Have you incorporated any new traditions or rituals into your relationship since making the decision to get married?
* Sorry -- this is not wedding related, but I just wanted to remind everyone that the voter registration deadline might be as early as this weekend for some states, so if you haven't yet registered, please consider doing so today. Just go here for state-by-state info.