Friend 1: “Why didn’t you ask for help?”
Friend 2: “PSH, Revanche? Ask for help?” *proceeds to laugh her head off*
- On me nearly unsuccessfully heaving a suitcase into the overhead, thinking I’d be damned if I didn’t get it in there myself.
There’s something almost therapeutic about old friends who know my foibles. I’m terrible at this.
It’s 2:30 in the morning. PiC and I have just set the date for our reception that’s oh, about 2 years overdue or something like that and now it’s time to actually plan this thing. I only get the occasional rage-attacks that tend to leak out when I think “wedding” and “Mom” and “family that was horrible” so this should absolutely go smoothly now.
For the three years since our engagement, the idea of asking people to be involved, to help or stand by me as I navigated the road of being engaged and getting married tasted sour. It was hard to fathom how it wouldn’t be an imposition, that family or friends who hadn’t volunteered might actually be willing to lend an ear, a hand or a brain.
And for the past four months, talking about setting a date and finding a venue, the thought of even asking them to make time to attend felt like a definite imposition. As much as I don’t care about what people think in the abstract, that non-caring only works when I’m doing my own thing and working on my own life. Not when I have to *shudder* share part of my life. Setting a date was something of a random process, filtered and narrowed down as I frantically tried to ensure that the really important people wouldn’t be put out too much.
Not all of this is the rambling of a paranoid, oversensitive loon. More than some of my oldest friends have moved thousands of miles away and it’s no small thing to travel cross country for a wedding.
I mean, weddings. High probability of mediocre food, questionable music, and dozens if not hundreds of strangers surrounding you while you don’t spend quality time with the person you came to celebrate. (yes, i a wildly sentimental.) That hasn’t been the case for most weddings I’ve attended since becoming an adult but only because I started self-selecting out of the ones where I don’t love the person enough to put up with nearly anything for them years ago. As a kid, I was the unwilling baggage at dozens of family weddings, and believe me, when you’re related by way of dad’s mom’s sister’s brother in law’s nephew’s elephant’s trainer, “family” didn’t make them any more special. (Kidding about the elephant trainer because honestly, I would have been 100% all over the elephant trainer thing.)
But it’s time. It’s time to commit to a thing that’s supposed to be special, supposed to be for us to enjoy with our family and friends, and supposed to be memorable in good ways and not the kind that leave me up at night pondering the meaning of life. And for that, it might also be time to learn how to ask for help in a way that lets our loved ones know we want them to be part of it.
We didn’t get here all unwilling after all. We really did want to share some part of this with good friends and family.
And speaking of loved ones, maybe I’ll learn how to talk to Dad again. Those conversations have not been going well these past months and I feel like the World’s Worst Daughter for it.
In trying to talk about wedding receptioning, he and I have butted heads far more severely than I ever imagined possible, leading to my insisting that he’s obligated to support me and my decisions rather than insisting that we must invite “all or none” of our relatives. The grief hasn’t been doing either of us any good, and in this situation, being the only child he’s likely to parent at a wedding, I understand that he’s suddenly got a vested interest in “Doing It Right” culturally but … guys. “All” is approximately 500+ people. I would lose my mind. I’m going to do that anyway, what’s the thing after that?
In any case, we have a date and a possible venue and we’re going to spend twice as much as my stingy soul’d prefer but whatever. Full service. Small wins, right?