Throwback Thursday: Mawwidge! a Recap (from August 2011)

(Today is the fourth anniversary of my self-wedding.  I’ll have more to say about that later, but for now, here’s the post I made right after the event.)

 

A close-up of the altar.

I wasn’t sure how to write about this past weekend’s big event – there are so many angles I could take.  I figured I would start with the practical: the ceremony itself.

In true Spiritual Nomad style, when I decided to wed myself, I borrowed elements of a variety of matrimonial traditions to create the ceremony.  I wanted the overall theme to be what I called “Punjabi Meltdown,” but since I’m not an actual Hindu I didn’t feel the need (or have the resources) to have a multi-day wedding with hours of complicated ritual.  Instead, I meshed together the parts of Eastern and Western ceremonies that I liked and I think came up with something meaningful and fun.

My two best friends in the entire universe, S1ren and Laurie, presided over the evening – S1ren led the ceremony itself (this is after she sewed my wedding outfit, being the badass seamstrix she is), and Laurie acted as a sort of wedding coordinator since she’s had a traditional wedding and knew how to keep me from stressing out.  She also gave an absolutely gorgeous blessing during the ceremony, and believe you me, I felt blessed!

In addition to the fantastic red salwar kameez S1ren made me, I wore beautiful mendhi designs on my hands and feet courtesy of my friend Antares, whose skill with a henna cone is un-freaking-believable. I had on ankle bells, about sixty billion bracelets, and even makeup – no kidding!

We started by giving each attendee a candle and leading them into a circle, set to Loreena McKennitt’s “Kecharitome.”  The room was lit mostly by candles, and we’d set up a central altar at the head of the room, draped with fabric and decked with an enormous vase of Texas flowers in bright colors. After everyone had found a seat, the music changed to my version of a wedding march:  “Nothing Else Matters” by Apocalyptica.

That’s right, Metallica on cello.

Party favors!

S1ren gave a brief welcome, and I followed suit, then went into my vows.  In a Hindu wedding, the bride and groom must take seven steps together, each one with a pledge to fulfill certain responsibilities in the marriage.  I did the same, and with each step made a vow to myself (I’ll post those separately since they’re a bit long).  When I reached the altar again, we did the ring “exchange,” in which S1ren had me repeat after her:

With this ring, I commit myself to the fullness of my own life, for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health, as long as this Earthwalk shall last.

Then, as they do in the Hindi ceremony, I applied red powder to my hairline; this is usually done by the groom, to symbolize the bride’s becoming a wife.  Naturally since I was both bride and groom I did it to myself.

After that, Laurie gave her prayer and blessing, and I heard an awful lot of sniffling in the audience.  Then, I gave each attendee a bindi; this isn’t traditional, but I felt like a small gesture of my appreciation was important, and I wanted everyone to know they were a part of my tribe.

Plus I wanted to poke everyone in the Third Eye.

At that point S1ren announced me a “fully committed woman” and (to my giggling surprise) dumped rose petals over my head.

They were actually supposed to be red, but ended up kind of an awesome pink. Yeah, I said “awesome” and “pink” in the same sentence.

Then we partied!  We delighted in sangria, chocolate chai cupcakes, and all manner of tasty foodstuffs brought by the guests.   Once the wine had been flowing a while all the women got up and danced, showing off their Bollywood stylings. It’s not every wedding where you get to do the “feed the chickens” move to P!nk’s “Raise Your Glass.”

(And in the case of myself and my dear friend Lorrie, did something of an interpretive dance in hilarious Bollywood fashion recapping our trip to the Pacific Northwest last year.  Ask me to see the moves for “oh look, we’re lost again” and “look at all the people in hoodies!” sometime.)

It was an amazing night.  I’m forever grateful to the people who helped make it happen, and especially to my Laurie and S1ren, who are the living embodiment of grace – they swoop in, make things beautiful, and give love without question…and even clean up after.  I am one hell of a blessed woman.

Not to mention I have an awesome wife.

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8 thoughts on “Throwback Thursday: Mawwidge! a Recap (from August 2011)

  1. This sounds fabulous and I love Apocalyptia’s version of that song ^_^
    Congratulations to you and yourself! Do you have any pictures of your dress you’d be willing to share with us?

  2. *sniffsniff* Waaaaah! Even just the vague outline made me teary. I’m so sad I couldn’t be there to see it all in person. It makes me soooooo happy that you went through with this commitment to yourself. This is just the start of a truly amazing journey at the same time that it’s just a stepping stone on your wholelife path. Amazeballs. Bless.

  3. The ceremony was *beautiful*, dahlink, you did an amazing job – and with the decor and food and everything, too.

    You bet your a$$ I dumped rose petals on your head. It was either that or smash a cupcake into your face, and while that would have been fun, well, from one Scorpio to another, I was afraid of the retribution possibilites. xD

  4. It sounds like an absolutely beautiful ceremony Dianne! I am so happy for you! Congratulations & Blessings to you and your beloved!

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