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Friday, September 17, 2010


This Summer I received a Facebook post from an acquaintance – “What would you change about your wedding day?” Her question was aimed toward the ceremony; the DAY; the party (she is an event planner).

It made me smile, because, really –

Um, who cares?

I have no intention to diminish the linking of souls that the ceremony and ritual of marriage creates; but seriously, the party? Does anyone past the third year of marriage spend even five minutes contemplating how they would do the party differently?

Well – okay, yes; I’ll admit. Sometimes I wonder why we spent so much money on the wedding; why I worried about the food and the drink and the band and the dresses and, and, and . . . .

Things like arriving in a limousine, instead of just showing up in our car. It is fascinating to observe yourself become engulfed by the whirlwind of expectation.

Martha Stewart exerted an inordinate amount of control over my life during that period.

I must admit, I didn’t have the awareness to realize this until much later.
So, what would I do different?

Well, I would have spent less on the wedding and more on our house and wedding trip; I would not have registered for china or silver or whatever wacky things that seemed so critical at that moment. (Sad, but true, we almost never use the china because it cannot go through the dishwasher, and I’m much too lazy to polish silver. Ahhh, reality.)

I would have spent more time meeting with our priest, even though our pre-wedding sessions with her were only “required” because I had been divorced. Those were beautiful, critical, enlightening moments. As I look back, I realize how important it was to have someone there to independently observe and bridge the communication gaps.

I would not have hurried so much to schedule a date, though I realize why I did; I was terrified he would change his mind; and I loved (and love) him so much; it was an empty place in my soul, and I needed his commitment in front of God and everyone to feel whole.

It is good now to realize that I feel whole within myself; but truly, that growth could not have occurred without his constant, consistent support and love.

He has taught me that washing dishes, and bringing someone a cup of morning coffee, and being patient; these things demonstrate love.

That it is not the dramatic gesture; not jewelry or fancy gifts; though they are appreciated; it is the everyday kindness, caring and support that build a life together.

You have your children, and you love and adore your children; but their job is to leave you; and so they shall. But when you create a love relationship, a partnership; a marriage; as your creations prepare to depart, you still (hopefully) have one another.

I read once that any good marriage is actually a series of re-marriages. That every couple years, you grow, you change; you separate in certain ways. And that to keep your relationship together, to keep the love; you have to renegotiate the terms.

You grow, you shift; and you come back together and say “well, here is who I am, and where I am; where are you?” You work out new ground rules, new ways of being and loving. You re-marry. Or else; you don’t.

We all know what happens when you don’t.

Sometimes the disintegration is slow, methodical; sometimes, you go along in blissful ignorance, and something blows you apart. Either way; you’re done. There’s nothing there; no ties that bind, that connect; that wish to receive each other.

Would you choose to wander back through time and change anything about your wedding day? Maybe change photographers, update your hairstyle, or serve different food?

What about your relationship, right now; is there anything you would change? Any outdated patterns or ways of thinking – not just in your partner, but yourself? Do you even know the new person who your spouse or partner has become through the years? Do you know yourself?

Might be time to “re-marry.”




  1. Beautiful, Jill! I remember so well the liturgy of your and Mark's wedding, although I couldn't tell you a thing about the party. Thanks for letting me be a part of it...

  2. Wow Jill! I came to your website to check out the class schedule and found this blog entry! For me, your openness creates a safe intimacy, and from that space it's inviting to for me to look inward and be more open and honest with myself.

    It does seem like the the journey to wholeness is possible through the love and support of others ~ possibly because the journey to oneness is the same journey?

    Thanks for writing & sharing :)


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