Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Bee is for Breedlove. (What?)

So it seems that when you get married, there are a few questions that EVERYONE IN THE WORLD simply must ask. There are two in particular that no one can resist.

1) Are you having kids? This is sometimes phrased as, "When are you having kids?" As if reproduction is not only something that everyone wants to do but is also something everyone is able to do. Trust me when I tell you that you don't want to get me started on this one. Jonathan and I have a variety of ways to rebuff this inquiry, more or less gently depending on the inquirer.

2) Are you changing your name? This one's just for me of course, and is significantly more fun - particularly because the answer is yes! In this instance I am doing the "normal" thing and taking my new husband's name. In my creative pursuits I will continue with my chosen nom de plume, but how was I ever going to turn down Breedlove? Please. Best name ever. Half of why I married him. (Kidding. It's only a quarter.)

Names... have always been an issue for me. For a long time I didn't even really identify with my first name. I went through a stint in middle school where I dabbled in having people call me by my middle name, Michelle. Apparently I look more like a Michelle anyway - people have accidentally called me Michelle my whole life, not even knowing the validity of the misnomer. Then in high school there was my brief obsession with the name Zoe, Greek for life. Why? Who knows. Everybody knows all cool names start with Z, I guess.

At some point in my late teens the world decided I would be called Mel, and though I never particularly liked it I embraced it. I wore it like armor: a name for the personality that walked around out there in the world for me while I hid inside of my head. It came with a bonus, in that many people assumed my name was Melanie. A cloak of anonymity, even as I dyed my hair pink and purple and walked the streets in giant boots and wifebeaters.

In the past couple of years, though, something new has happened. I've stopped being a persona and began to just be a person, and as such I no longer need that false name. Slowly but surely, even to me, I became Melissa. Which, though quite common among women my age, is actually a pretty interesting name. Mel means honey, and Melissa means little honey bee. I have a thing with bees these days; they're a fairly good symbol for my life, now that I've started to get over the phoenix thing.

Bees are the symbol of fertility and sexuality.
Its honeycomb, a hexagon, is the symbol of the heart and
represents the sweetness of life found within our own hearts.
It is also the symbol of the sun and all its energies.

The bee reminds us to extract the honey of life and to make our
lives fertile (productive) while the sun shines.
No matter how great the dream is, there is the promise of fulfillment
if we pursue our dreams.

If a Bee has shown up in your life, examine your own productivity.
Are you doing all you can to make your life more productive?
Are you busy enough?
Are you making time to savor the honey of life and not becoming
a workaholic?

The Bee is the symbol of accomplishing the impossible.
Aerodynamically, its body is too large for its wings and should not be able
to fly. Although now we understand how it does fly (high rate of wing
movement), the Bee remains a symbol of accomplishing anything you put your
mind to.
So there you go. To pursue, and sometimes accomplish, the impossible; to stay busy, almost too busy; to appreciate what is sweet in life (what I call the little things) - for better or worse, it's sort of me in a nutshell.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Wrong. (But it's alright.)

It is wrong of me to have kept y'all waiting for so long - after all, the wedding was a week ago. Trouble is, honestly, I haven't really wanted to talk about it.

See... for a person of my given neuroses, it is a very dangerous thing to spend two years focusing on the potential events of one day. It is essentially impossible for something not to go wrong, and it is then equally as impossible for my crazed little mind not to fixate upon what was not perfect. This kind of tendency is one of the many, many reasons for my weekly psychotherapy sessions.

You've all been hearing about the laundry list of near catastrophes that has accrued in these many months of preparation. The week leading up to the wedding, and the wedding day, was sort of that in great concentration. I seem to have this incredible luck in life - things that never ever happen just, well, happen. To me. But before you go thinking I'm doing nothing but feeling sorry for myself, let me throw in that my luck goes both ways: I get the bad, but I also get the good.

I already spent too many days of my honeymoon obsessing over what went wrong, and especially because some of it isn't fully resolved yet I'm not even going to get into that crap. Instead I'm going to present you with the laundry list of what was simply wonderful. These are the things I want to remember, and the things that matter anyway.

The rehearsal dinner. It was amazing. Several of my friends were able to be there, three month old darling Mackenzie stole the show, the vegan entree was divine, Jonathan's parents loved the restaurant we'd chosen, the room they put us in was perfect, the service was flawless, the weather was awesome, the view of City Park from the balcony was stunning... it really couldn't have gone better.
The rain. Yes, it rained on our wedding day. All afternoon and all evening. It's good luck, right? And at times I got to have a polka dotted wedding dress. ;)
The shoes. I positively loved the shoes I ended up wearing. I will be happy with that choice forever.
My hair. Man, do I have some gorgeous hair, if I do say so myself. I grew it for a long time so that it would be at such a length for the wedding, and I felt that it looked lovely. We put these amazing white ranunculus clips in it that were just right. Fear not, pictures forthcoming, eventually. I was so happy with it that day that I've decided not to chop it all off... for the time being at least.
My bouquet. As I've already declared, the flowers were the single thing that I only had to do once, for which I will be eternally indebted to Fleur Rouge. My bouquet is so beautiful, I want to look at it every day for the rest of my life. And I just might.
Our limo and its driver. The limo was so gorgeous! A 1963 Rolls Royce Silver Cloud - a car to die for. And the driver, George. In so many ways he made everything OK. He brought us champagne after the ceremony, held an umbrella over our photographer as we took pictures around the park, drove us around when we didn't feel like going home, and provided a source of cheerful respite throughout the evening. We love you George.
Our friends. So many of our friends joined us from distant locales, and though many could not do so we know that they wanted to be with us and were sending us their love.
The food. It looked great, it was delicious, contrary to what everyone claims I had plenty of time to eat it, and everyone at the party said it was marvelous. Any skepticism of the all vegan reception was quickly put to rest - after all, it's hard to cast dispersions with your mouth full of Mushrooms Rockefeller.
The cupcakes and the cakes. They were gorgeous! They were delicious! I will FOREVER be grateful and indebted to KC and her fab shop, KC's Babycakes on the Northshore, for making that aspect of our wedding happen. Everyone raved, and all 50 of the gift boxes we'd assembled went home with happy, cupcake loving partygoers.
Him. Jonathan. My husband. He approached the "altar" with the most beautiful grin; he delivered his vows with his voice clear and calm and steady and strong (even as I cried and choked through mine); and on our wedding night he made me feel like the most beautiful, most loved woman to ever walk the earth. Plus he looked totally hot in his suit.

So there you have it - some highlights of happiness from the big day. There was more - like the jewelery that I made for myself that I'm now in love with. I'll probably have a few final posts of the details to make here once I sort out some things with the photographs... but let's not get into that, shall we? ;)

Friday, March 12, 2010


OK. We're eight days out. And yes, there was the party at work, which was lovely. Last Saturday I'm pretty sure I was relaxed and happy - I hardly even remember what I did. (Oh right, we got our taxes done {I owe $2k} and then went out to dinner. Thank you date book!)

Sunday I had a VERY successful and productive shopping day with my maid-of-witness Monica. We went to mega-Macy's and got undergarment thingies - weird but apparently necessary. And then we went to Moo Shoes where I got two GORGEOUS new pairs of shoes, both brown. Go figure. My rehearsal dinner dress is brown, see.

And then, on Monday, the panic returned.

I woke up pretty anxious. And by lunchtime it had swollen to I-have-to-go-out-to-lunch proportions. I in fact ended up at Le Pain Quotidian, because they always have vegan pastry, and it's a pastry kind of week, and they always have vegan soup and soup sounded nice too. By Tuesday I was a full blown wreck; I got exactly zilch accomplished at work all day. I'm sure things would have been much better if I'd stopped thinking about the wedding and focused on work instead, but the nature of panic is to perpetuate itself, not to look for solutions.

It may have hit its peak Tuesday night - I couldn't sleep at all. There was wailing, gnashing of teeth, rending of clothes... OK, not quite rending of clothes, but damn close. Poor Jonathan. I can't say it was really tapering on Wednesday. In fact I couldn't actually leave the house Wednesday morning. If I'd tried to go get on the subway I would have had an actual panic attack. So I gave myself the morning off. I did actually put the time to some use, and then I went to work and got some work done. And then I went to therapy.

So finally, by Thursday, it got a little better. I did work, I took myself out to lunch, I did some more work, I got some things done in the evening, and I don't think I cried once all day. I only ate half a pint of ice cream, and I ate three real meals.

Today, I'm actually... kinda excited! There's a bit of a damper being put on it by the crazy amounts of pain that I'm in - I really shouldn't be at work, in fact. But it's my last day before I'm out for two weeks, so I figure I'll just suck it up. Swallow a couple of pills and hope that they help, keep the wrist brace on for whatever the hell is going on with my right side, and do what I can.

I'm getting married in eight days! That Jonathan guy? I like him! A lot! You should see him playing with the bunny rabbit. Cutest thing you ever saw. He's going to be my husband. I'm going to be his wife. We get to have a party about it. I get to wear a pretty dress. Now: pray that it doesn't rain. ;)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Why blogs are living in my head.

I am getting married in 9 days! I am living in a state of perpetual panic. Here are things that I will write posts about if I ever compose myself enough to do so:

-criticism and praise of "Gumbo Tales" by Sarah Rhoan
-my weekend of four legumes in four days
-changes I noticed in New Orleans - those that make sense and those that don't...
-how a quiet little gray bunny rabbit can change your life
-the nature of panic
-what a cold, clear morning in New York City truly means
-my name: why I keep what I keep; why I'm letting go what doesn't feel like mine
-the various medical tests and medication changes I'm currently avoiding because I have too many other things to think about right now

There are probably others

The words are living in my head. At this point they're bombarding the inside of my skull, trying to smash themselves right through. But there are still thank you cards to make, there's still packing to do, oh my stars and garters where does the time go.