i went to a big, fancy wedding last saturday.
i didn't drink. i didn't focus on food. i was present.
it was a pretty awful event - an interfaith marriage, and the only people in the room who seemed okay with it were the clergy, and even then i can't be sure.
the groom's mother wept all night, and they clearly weren't tears of joy. the grandchildren wouldn't be jewish. his father scowled hard all evening. the cocky brother picked a fight with my fiance.
the bride's grandparents wouldn't attend. her mother roamed around aimlessly mumbling, "i've never seen anything like this before."
the bride is a lovely 23 year old woman. she's got a great career, speaks many languages, is very beautiful and she's very, naturally, easily thin. but i wouldn't trade places with her -- not with those in-laws. (the groom seems nothing like his family. let's pray that's true.)
i sat next to d.'s brother and his wife. they did not speak one word during the whole dinner. not to each other. not to me. the music was so loud that i couldn't really hear what anyone else at the table was saying.
but no matter who they were, what they were feeling and which religious/cultural background they represented, EVERYONE drank. hard. really hard.
one person at the wedding didn't drink. me. i was present.
it was the first time since i stopped drinking that i wanted to be drunk. other times, i've looked at nice wineglasses filled with merlot and thought, "doesn't that look nice."
not saturday. i wanted to be all boozed up and not painfully aware of the tension, the anger, the stress, the sadness, the pain.
but i didn't drink. i didn't use food. it was the first wedding i've been to that i didn't get wildly drunk and then go home and binge and puke.
i sat with the discomfort. the incredible discomfort for seven hours. it sucked.
but i did it. i can't tell you how proud i am.
each step is a new step. some involve great experiences; some are mediocre; some suck.
i can handle them all.