We’ve had the joy and honor of officiating a few weddings in the last few weeks and I must share with you that the gravitas of the moment is never lost on us. We’ve been officiating weddings for 13 years and each time feels new and fresh. The moment of pronouncement is usually the most profound, although I’ve been known to become verklempt (for those unfamiliar with this term, it’s a Yiddish word for getting “choked up” or “misty”) at other moments along the way during a ceremony. In fact, I often warn our couples that I may cry a little since the ceremony and the relationship it represents holds tremendous meaning for me.
Over the years Bob and I have created a little extra ritual for ourselves, since each wedding we perform makes us feel as if we just got married again. We always take each other out for a little “date” to celebrate our newly-married couple and to celebrate our own commitment to each other. We are fortunate in that we have ample opportunities to have these little “recommitment dates” and take full advantage of them. It occurs to me that this would be a great practice for all committed couples, married or not, to make it a habit to ritualize their commitment to each other time and again. Anniversaries are a great time for this; creating a private ritual that symbolizes and celebrates the vows of the commitment made. In our culture we reserve so called “significant” anniversaries for this sort of celebration; 10 years, 20, 25 and so on. My thought is that this is something to do often and consciously by couples (and individuals as well. (more to come on Self-Commitment Ceremonies in future blogs).
With that said, I suggest that couples make it a priority to acknowledge themselves and their unique relationship annually (at least) by celebrating in a conscious way. A special dinner and some quiet time together, perhaps revisiting their wedding vows or ceremony; looking at pictures or videos; and mostly remembering what brought them together, the dreams realized and those yet to come. I also suggest re-statement of their vows to each other – maybe even creating new ones. I find that creating this sort of private ritual time cultivates intimacy between couples, bringing them into a sacred space they have created together.
And by all means, celebrate those milestone dates! Gather the family and have a party. Just don’t forget that day to day, year to year, the relationship grows and changes along with each of you. Do what you can to stop and acknowledge what has brought you together – and do it often.
Here’s to Love.