As I sit here looking out the windows, listening to the pouring rain and staring at the blank Word Document that has been staring back at me about half an hour…I have no idea what to write, what to blog about.
My last post was dated April 2, 2012.
I better post something, right?
Although I do have something on my mind that I can’t shake off. Usually, I knew, I have to write about it…to pour my thoughts out into words but today I hesitate. I held back.
After our big family dinner last Monday with my brother’s girlfriend and her families I can’t shake this out of my head.
You see it is part of my culture, Indonesian culture that once a couple is getting serious, the families will get involved. As we, Indonesians believe that marriage is a merging of two families. Not merely the lovebirds. The union does not only involves the happy madly in love couple but also their big families.
That Monday dinner was the first time we met the girlfriend’s family. No, they are not getting married anytime soon – is that right, bro? – or that’s the plan anyway. So it was a casual dinner where two families get to know one another. Oh, and some bits of advice were given to the couple.
That’s the first in our family…
Although I was once married. I never experience anything like that. Heck, I didn’t experience a lot of things that follow my cultures.
Don’t get me wrong…I really am happy for my brother and told him “Hey, I don’t mind if you get married before I get re-marry!” to which he laughed and brushed off. Typical of him being the mysterious kind!
But I did felt a little uncomfortable because I overheard my mother told the girl’s family “Oh, yes…she’s Reggy’s eldest sister and yes, that is her son.” Pointing at the boy who was busy playing iPad.
My automated deafening systems work well because I didn’t hear what questions followed after that but I’m sure it’s somewhere along “Where is her husband?” then followed by an awkward silence after my mother would say “She’s divorced.” and the other party usually said “Oooh…” just nodding.
I’m no longer ashamed of my status but yes sometimes there are moments where I hate being in the spotlight.
Looking back to 7 years ago, the only ‘family dinner’ I had only involved Mr. X, my parents, and my two brothers. That’s it!
It’s common to hear the couple being
grilled asked what their plans are for these kinds of meetings aka family dinner. So if you’re not serious you better not do this!
“The key is prayers…”
“If she’s your missing rib then she won’t go anywhere…”
“Pray together, ask for the Lord’s guidance…”
Those were just some of the advice being given to the lovebirds.
Coming from a very religious family, part of me nodded in agreement while wondering if I will get the same kind of dinner somewhere down the line?
I was the rebel. The one that ditches family’s traditions and eloped. Well sort of…
You see, I was adamant chose to do things my way back then. Which was, got engaged, got the fiancé visa and flew halfway across the world to marry him,
the love of my life without any of my family around. Promised my parents that I will return and give them that big dream wedding they must’ve always dream of throwing for me, their first born and only daughter.
But that dream never happened. I ditched my childhood dreams of walking down the aisle holding hands with my father. Of the father-daughter dance that never takes place.
I was that rebel.
Yet my parents and family love me even when I know I had disappointed them in a way. I am still their daughter. They never voice it but they don’t have to. I can feel it in my soul. Not so much about the big fat Indonesian wedding that I never have, it’s more about their only daughter who didn’t get married in a church with them witnessing it all. It must’ve been their dreams too to see me in a white gown.
Mr. X and I got married at his house in Upstate New York with just two people witnessing it, his eldest son and his girlfriend – four actually if you count the Justice of The Peace and my dog, Elvis! At that time I thought that’s all I wanted but secretly I still have regrets about not having the kind of wedding I thought I would have.
Maybe that’s why weddings have always been emotional for me. Apart from my skeptical side after my divorce, it brought a bit of sadness because I never have that.
When I went to my cousin’s wedding last February, I used the excuse of being the family’s photographer to not listen to their wedding vows because I’ve heard them before in English of course and they meant nothing on my case. I didn’t cry because I was too busy taking pictures to even think about what a precious moment that was.
It may take time – or a really strong man – to change how I feel about wedding vows. Only time can tell but I know when my time comes I will eventually restore my faith in that union between a man and a woman as husband and wife again. I will be a believer again.
So to my brother…good luck, bro! May everything goes well for you!