Goin’ to the chapel

Tomorrow my sister gets married. It’s not her first wedding, but it will be just as special as if it were. Because marriage is a gesture of hope as much as it is one of love. It is a promise to another human being, a promise we mere mortals make to one another, to share our lives.

It’s pretty amazing when you think about it…

(and in fact, to digress a moment, when I was a child, I thought it was such an unbelievable, amazing thing, that I considered my parents to be incredibly lucky…to have found someone who loved the other so much that they wanted to spend the rest of their lives together truly seemed unbelievable to me!…in fact I was convinced it would never happen to me, it seemed such a monumental thing…which, of course, it is)

We are born alone and we die alone. We live as separate souls. No one else can be inside our skin, think our thoughts, feel our feelings, act our actions. To find someone to love, to share and partner with us in this amazing journey called life is almost miraculous, isn’t it?

And, no. Things don’t always work out. Being mortals, we are not perfect and sometimes a promise runs its course earlier than we had planned or hoped. And it can hurt like hell.

But I don’t believe it is ever a failure. Life – this crazy, miraculous, priceless gift – is a journey. It isn’t perfect. It has peaks and valleys. But without one we couldn’t recognize the other. Because just as wind and rain help shape beautiful mountains, so do our joys and heartaches shape us. I believe that each has a value. Even when, at the time, it’s really really really tough to see what that value is.

(whoever said that tough times build character was right, but how many times have we wished to have just a bit – or lot – less character?)

And so it is with each person who crosses our lives. Whether briefly or almost forever. Each has a value. So if and when our journey un-crosses with another’s, I don’t believe it is a failure. Rather, it seems, that to give up, to be bitter, to not see any value, to not hope again, to not love again, to not live life, our journey, as fully as we are capable of, now that would be the failure, wouldn’t it?

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