Monday Musings: Wedding Presence

Monday, March 30, 2009

Just got back from a whirlwind 24 hour trip to New Orleans--my good friends were getting married and even though it was a "no kids" wedding I couldn't imagine missing it, so I left my husband at home with the three kids, took my breast pump along as my "plus 1" and headed to the bayou for one night.

Amongst the many "highlights":

-Pumping milk in a dirty bathroom stall in Las Vegas. Feeling oh so "lucky"';

-Enduring stares from confused, baffled, annoyed passengers on the plane after I emerged from my periodic 10 minute bathroom pumping sessions;

-Sitting in front of Flavor Flav, not knowing who he was, wondering if he was trying to be "ironic" by wearing a big white clock around his neck;

-Squirming into industrial strength Spanx to trick my six-week-post-partum body into looking vaguely presentable;

-Travelling from the wedding to the reception with a full-on police escort--apparently this is what is "done" in New Orleans for weddings?;

-Learning that there are special pillows made for mothers nursing twins. Thanking God I don't have to nurse twins;

-Walking through the French Quarter, entirely lit by candlelight because of a power outage;

-Seeing Brad and Angie's house, complete with retina-scanner...!;

-Eating beignets at Cafe du Monde at 1 in the morning;

-Eating beignets at Cafe du Monde at 1 in the morning;

-Eating beignets at Cafe du Monde at 1 in the morning...!;

-Getting to watch my two close friends start their married life together...

With all the logistics our lives involve these days, and with so many weddings under our belts, it's easy to forget how awesome a wedding really is--the moment when two people declare to all the people who love them that they're a team in the world. I will always remember the people who were at my wedding. Not in any disparaging way to people who couldn't make it, and not to do a disservice to friends I've made after. But it is just this sort of moment in time that becomes a reference point. There are lots of ways to divide the world. The way you did things pre-kid versus post-kid; people who like Peeps and people who don't...! People who were at your wedding, people who weren't. For me, those people are bonded to my history--they will always be part of one of the most important days of my life.

Which is why I endured the various affronts to my vanity (I am talking industrial strength Spanx!), need for sleep (going on about 1 hour right now), and nursing routine in order to be at the wedding. I wanted to be a present for the magnanimous moment in my friends' lives. I wanted to bear witness. I wanted to see my friends as they made vows and promises to take care of and love each other forever--words we all know are not guarantees but that still level me in their candor and pure, raw hopefulness. I wanted to live the mantra I always say but don't always live by: Sometimes the best thing you can do for people is just show up.

If I also got to drink champagne with the reckless abandon of a nursing mom on furlough and eat absurd about of beignets, well that was just an added bonus...!
H.G. said...

No way, Flavor Flav was at the wedding?!? Sounds like a great time.

Anonymous said...

Spanx is still my best friend and my DD is three!!

Love the new l&f of the site!

Idina said...

LOL: "nursing mom on furlough", you def can capture a turn of phrase, sounds like a great weekend and i agree about weddings: it's easy to roll your eyes be mad about bad food and spending money but i always try to remember thew ay i felt at my own and how happy i was to see so many people i love.

Anonymous said...

this just made me go buy a donut haha, glad you made it to the wedding, i remember skipping out on things right after i had my baby and i felt very justified at the time but 5 years later i do look back with some regret.

Sonali said...

L-O-V-E the new site, can I ask for the source image for the gold background?

Anonymous said...

cafe du mond beignets - yum!!!! miss them so much!

Neesha said...

good for you for making it!! And good for your husband for supporting you and taking care of the kids!!

Anonymous said...

hi! First time commentor. Just wanted to say it was so great to read this. I am getting married this year and lots of my friends with kids have already said they probably won't be able to make it. While I totally get they kids change things I wentt thru many hoops to make it to their weddings and baby showers you know? I just was happy to read that you feel the same!!

Anonymous said...

Flavor Flav?!? "High society" wedding!

Radman said...

Pumping milk in a dirty bathroom stall in Las Vegas. Feeling oh so "lucky"': I have this mental picture in my mind of an exxon station like atmosphere and I am thankful that I dont have the biology for this.

Eating beignets at Cafe du Monde at 1 in the morning: pretty good huh?

Getting to watch my two close friends start their married life together: nice

Anonymous said...

the airplane pumping--know it well and will never forget how i looked standing in that little space, imagining "flowing milk", looking at myself in the horribly lit mirror!!!!

Ameda Purely Yours said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ameda Purely Yours said...

When I was pregnant with my second child and 1omonths baby in hand, my sister gave me her electric breast pump and I was in my friends wedding. I had to use it there itself and let my baby feed with my milk by my husband. so I think it is just a matter of what you feel. I think if you feel comfortable using them then as long as the are squeaky clean than it would be alright.

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