I’m not big on important dates and celebrations. It’s not because I’m a big old grouch. Okay. I’m sort of curmudgeonly.
Life moves quickly; marking it in big ways is a relentless endeavor. Plus, you run the risk of missing something mundane that becomes extraordinary in some way, just because your energy is focused on making the special more special.
What I’m saying is: Heads up, people. Time is fleeting. Seize the moment. There’s a birthday every day. Life is measured by little deviations as well as broad milestones like turning thirty or being married for thirty years. I like to look back at the eccentricities, not the same exact party every ten years.
Birthdays, anniversaries, dates of first meetings, first I love you, first date, graduation, birth of first, second, third child. What’s the big deal? Who can remember all those dates?
There was a short period of time this year when I was under the impression that my daughter’s birthday was two days after her actual birthday. I literally had my daughter’s birthday wrong in my head. Imagine my surprise and desperation when I realized that I cheated myself two days to make her big day as special as I could, which isn't saying much. Children are gracious.
Because of my laissez-faire view of celebrations and big events in general, I married a guy to whom dates and events are important and big and special. He remembers all the details of every big event.
I don’t know the name of the restaurant we ate at where we got engaged, but he could probably tell you the name, where it was located, and even the name of our waiter. I can’t tell you what I ate but I’ll bet he can. I think he said that The Rolling Stones once ate there.
Some time after our wedding I confessed to a friend that I didn’t remember what day we got engaged. She barked at me, scolding “ANDREA. It was New Year’s Eve.”
New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Eve. We got engaged on New Year’s Eve. I repeat it in my head like a mantra. Not instantly recalling these details is embarrassing.
Our engagement is blurry. I remember wearing a hideous long chocolate brown velvet dress that I hated but it was the only dress I owned. It was J. Crew. Or J. Jill. Awful brown suede slippers to match. They were almost too small – my toes scrunched in the tips. I vaguely remember some sort of box. Was it chocolate? A ring and a speech. Applause. Did I cry? Did he?
I remember phone calls. Who did we call? Parents, probably. Friends, brothers, aunts, grandparents? I don’t know.
The Rolling Stones and an ugly brown dress. These are the details I remember from our engagement. These are the oddball things I remember in general.
That night was a big deal. A night that began this life I am living right now. We took care to nurture our relationship and he took pains to organize this big part of its official start. I wonder if any of it would have happened if it had been up to me. I wonder how much I’d remember if it wasn’t for him.
I’m okay that he celebrates for both of us. I get him a card if I think of it in time. I feel bad that it involves a herculean effort for me to do much more than this. I’m the worst.
This post inspired by:
Prompt #4: Write a blog post inspired by the word: engaged.