It’s been a hard weekend here – there has been a family emergency, and I’m having a hard time summoning my words. It did, however, seem to be the perfect time to post this picture by Our Labor Of Love, which moved me beyond words.
I talk a lot about how I want our wedding to feel like a joyous party. In fact, our wedding invitations actually say “Wild Celebration To Follow,” and oh, it will follow. But when David and I sat down to write what turned out to be our wedding mission statement we said that we wanted a simple religious ceremony followed by a joyful celebration. In the Jewish tradition, your wedding day is a personal Yom Kippur, a day of atonement. It’s a day you approach with deep internal meditation, making yourself right with the world, and with whatever your concept of the universal is. You apologize to those you have hurt and you try to approach the day and your marriage with a clean ethical slate. There is a particularly lovely Jewish tradition that a bride, on her wedding day, has God’s ear directly. In some communities it is traditional for people to pass along prayers for people in need of healing to the bride, and she prays for their healing before she walks down the aisle.
The point of all this is not that the wedding day needs to be a religious one. It is that, for me at least, the importance of our wedding ceremony is that it ties us to something far greater than ourselves: to our histories, to our traditions, to our families, to the pull of the universal. I hope my wedding day feels like this picture: deep, rich, human, with the hands of many generations, the hands of love on my shoulders.