Gratitude: Summer 2015

Many days I list at least one (sometimes up to six) distinct thing(s) for which I’m grateful. The list is usually archived monthly; although, July was our wedding month, so things were unusually busy. In light of that, here’s Summer 2015.

I’m grateful for strong hands to disassemble boxes for recycling. The single, polite meow that woke me up. My Moleskine journals. My brother. The incredibly helpful instructions at WebTrickz that allowed me to fix a theme compatibility issue. Bluehost’s FTP tools.

I’m grateful for long walks and chocolate martinis. Foggy mornings and chicken pot pie.

I’m grateful we abandoned JoS. A. Bank in favor of Hugo Boss. The ebullient thrill of finding the perfect tie. The means to succumb to an unusual amount of event-prep shopping. Bloomingdales. Laura Mercier. Jewelry by Kate Spade and Ralph Lauren. Party dress selection via texted selfies with my oldest childhood friend. Her certainty, “Buy that fucking dress.”

I’m grateful for my dentist. That sweet numbing gel for my gums before all the hydro-blu-biddy-blah poking digs in.

I’m grateful for a day to relax. Brie on pretzel bread. Sunlight. Dumbbells. Lemon juice.

I’m grateful for memories of good times with my little sister. Her health. Her mother. Her son. Her shelter.

I’m grateful for people savvy enough to bring warmth to meetings.

I’m grateful for soy meat food technology, spices and taco shells.

I’m grateful the wedding venue came through with an acceptable microbrew.

I’m grateful for the moment on July 1st when I went to be measured and my seamstress who bore an undeniable resemblance to a fairy godmother–squat and jolly, with poignant stories tumbling from her about every yard of tulle in the room–asked me how I was doing. I inhaled, knowing that time was up: months of insufficient exercise and excessive indulgences had formed my current shape, the shape of Ruth the forty-five-year-old bride. And as I inhaled I looked up to find the words. I paused long enough for the seamstress to guess, “Overwhelmed?” But I barely heard her because at the same time I blurted out my answer. Eclipsing every bit of self-consciousness over my size and age, erasing the hourly parade of insecure thoughts, was a genuine sense joy. How am I doing, she had asked. “I’m overflowing with love!”

I’m grateful Andy played Jim Gaffigan’s hilarious bit on weddings while we packed our bags to head east. Laughter. Rest. Nourishment.

I’m grateful for the robin’s eggshell I saw on the grounds of the Omni the week of the wedding, for the morning walk through the garden with all its flowers while talking with Mom on the phone. A 1930s deco home away from home and all the people there who took such good care of us.

I’m grateful for each person in our family who made the journey, for their good health and safety. The unusually wonderful weather. The sites of Washington D.C. My dozens of moments of connection with the people I love over coffee and cava, lipstick and tissue paper.

I’m grateful for my oldest niece, her good health, her good cheer as she helped me dress for the rehearsal dinner, her grace and poise as she fielded all communication in early morning wedding hours, her loving reading of the poem.

I’m grateful for our deep happiness, mine and Andy’s, for the giddy serenity and solid love of our wedding day.

I’m grateful for the crescendo of it all: from quiet wanderings to champagne toast after toast. From each vow to the one-two-three happy kisses while “Home” cascades from the string quartet and there, near the piano, the twirling glee of our dancing flower girl.

I’m grateful I’ll take my time to write the thousands of other details I hope to record about wedding week. I’m grateful for the immense waves of elation, for the countless hugs and smiles, and for Andy’s hand to hold.

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