Oh wow. it’s been too long since I’ve posted on here. Elysia is right– we’re all in the midst of huge transitions, but we’re not gone.
I spent the night before my wedding dancing for hours with my family in my living room. By dancing I mean yelling Journey lyrics until my throat was raw and shaking my arms and hair more than my hips. Everyone was there– my parents, my grandparents, my sisters, my cousins and their spouses, my aunt and uncle, my college roommate. All singing and swaying, not in unison but still together. I don’t even know how it all started; the night morphed from conversations in the kitchen to a dance circle in the next room with my eleven-year-old sister whipping her hair and shaking in the strangest ways. And then we ran. My sisters and my mother and my cousins, and I. We opened the back door and ran into the pitch black of my backyard, swallowing the darkness into our overheated arms. I ran in circles and squares, and my legs never got tired. It reminded me of the nights I spent playing capture the flag when I was younger. Like I was running that fast to get to the other side of the yard, my side, the safe side, and when I did everything would be ok because I had helped my team to win—that feeling. Except there was no flag, no team, no competition, just me and the women closest to my heart running around in the grass like kids a third of our age. And it wasn’t weird. It sounds like it now, writing it out, but it wasn’t at the time. It was like we were all releasing something, but at the same time clinging onto pieces of our bodies, memories, things we couldn’t place or recognize at the time but we knew were there and couldn’t let go.
So while most brides spend the night before their big day going to bed early and completing the final steps of a beauty regime, I spent hours writhing my body like a drowning fish and running like mad towards some unspecified place, some unspoken but understood level of winning. It felt surreal but necessary, like there was no other way that I should be spending my last single night, except right there with those exact people, doing exactly what was I was doing. I woke up the next day and married by best friend in a beautiful ceremony in which I did not cry (because I didn’t want my fake eyelashes to fall off, but also because I couldn’t stop smiling). And at the reception, my family and I danced again. It was different that time, I think. More celebratory than theraputic.
All the women in my family are filled with intense strength and unmatched passion. I have met few women who can handle their lives with as much grace as they do (minus the chickz, of course). I think sometimes they deal with their lives, jobs, and relationships so well, they forget about the joy that lives inside their bellies, waiting for them to let it bubble over. I’m glad that the physical distance we experience on a daily basis doesn’t affect the closeness we feel to each other, and we can still spend a night stomping around my living room and running through the grass with complete abandon, drinking deep from the pool of memories and sorrow and love and hope that binds us so close together.