Monday, August 05, 2002

And now back to your regularly scheduled angst

So I sang at this wedding with Impromptu on Saturday.

I had (and still have, despite singing for them) no idea who the bride and groom were. I know that the bride requested that we sing the Bobby McFerrin version of the 23rd Psalm ("The Lord is my Shepherd," but a version that changes all the pronouns for God to female), and I heard during the pre-service gossip that the bride was a militant feminist. Great, I thought, I get to witness the emasculation of another fine member of male society. Yep, my attitude was that bad.

In any event, the service started, and wound up being surprisingly, refreshingly traditional. The groom was puff-chested, the bride was radiant in a floral, lacy, very feminine dress. Pretty nice. Then, during the exchange of rings and vows, he maintained his composure, but she wound up breaking down and barely sobbing out, eyes shining, " long as we both shall live."

It was sublime; joyous; heartbreakingly beautiful, especially in the meager context I had. It was a moving, affirming moment for the whole church: capital-L Love rearing its tender head, conquering all.

It also hurt. A lot.

I always used to love weddings, being the sentimental romantic knucklehead that I (still) am, but attending them since the divorce has become unutterably painful. Good friends, complete strangers, no difference. From the mundane to the highly symbolic, every detail of a wedding hurts. It's the one situation that reliably brings back that delightful hole-in-the-chest feeling that was the hallmark of my first few months alone. I keep hoping I'll heal past it, but I keep getting blindsided from wedding to wedding.

I wanted to run, I wanted to curl up and weep, I wanted to start breaking things right there in the choir loft.

Instead I sang.

I'm still a mess inside when I think about it. God, I wish I knew how to make this better.

Sorry, new people. Part of the Brain Squeezings package.


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