Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Support and Blessings ...

I went to the doctor today to follow up after my ER visit this afternoon.  The doctor that I saw said that everything looked good and that I should follow up with her in a couple of weeks.  While I was waiting for her I noticed that her card was sitting on the sink and after her name was not only MD but also MPH (Master of Public Health).  After spending a lot of time with the curriculum at Rollins, I've gained a lot of respect for physicians who obtain an MPH and it put me at ease to be treated by one.

I've been slightly stressed out lately.  When Bruce and I first announced our engagement, people were overjoyed.  Tim and Elisabeth's smiles lit up the car on the way to the square for the concert after we told them.  The e-mails, text messages and voicemails that we both received as our parents slowly were able to tell everyone on each side of the family were heartwarming.  We got cards from friends and family.  A bunch of my girlfriends arranged a girls night and a night out at the wine bar to celebrate.  Bokang, a friend of Bruce and Cameron's from Lesotho who lived with them this summer, messaged me on facebook to congratulate me.  Andy took us out to celebrate and then started planning an engagement party at his house.  When we finally got to my parents house, my mom started crying when she saw the ring.  I saw so many people's faces light up when they saw Bruce and me at church, hugging us and asking to see the ring.  So many of the women who watched me grow up, who had me babysit their children, fumbled around for their glasses so they could get a good look at the ring.  When we went to Chris and Pam's wedding that night even the bride and groom (who had a lot of stuff going on that day!!) seemed elated and asked to see the ring.  Bruce's parents were thrilled, as well as his entire family who congregated at the Weaver's house to celebrate Jason and Amber's graduation.  Max was not only thrilled when he heard about the engagement but also told me that he had secretly wanted me to ask him to perform the ceremony when I asked him.  Kristin practically started crying when I asked her if she would be a bridesmaid.  Gabriella twirled around in circles and waved her feet in the air when I asked her to be the flowergirl.  Andy hosted us a wonderful engagement party at his house and so many of the people there are thrilled to be planning to drive to CT for the wedding.  It was such an amazing response.  This is such a joyous time in our lives and we are thrilled to be able to share it with the people who we love in our lives.

Everything seemed perfect.  Bruce and I set a date, asked our bridal party and have started looking at venues.  My mom and sister and I went dress shopping and I bought a beautiful dress that I love!!  I picked colors.  I'm starting to envision a perfect night.

But then Bruce told me about a conversation that he had with a mutual friend of ours.  She halfheartedly congratulated him and then expressed her concern that we were moving too fast.  She encouraged us to have a long engagement and do premarital counseling - she even said that she would help us to find a way to pay for it.  This really hurt Bruce and me and then we started to think back to the reactions of a handful of our mutual friends who have been with us since the beginning of our relationship, who knew us before we knew each other, saw our friendship as it was turning into a relationship and saw us make hard decisions about where I was going to school and whether or not Bruce was going to move to me.  When we thought back to some of these reactions, the elated high that we were feeling was suddenly deflated.  We felt discouraged.  It's just frustrating to have that kind of negativity in our lives.  We want so badly for people to see how happy we are together.  We want so badly for people to see that our families have embraced each one of us like children of their own.  We want so badly for people to be happy for us.

But we've come to realize that people are going to believe what they believe and feel what they're going to feel.  We can't change it.  But we can continue to be happy in our relationship and be in love.  We can make a conscious decision to choose to focus on the people that have been so supportive and not on those that bring negativity into our lives.  We've spent a lot of time talking about this and rejoicing in the people who have brought joy to our lives.  We have each other and that's what is important.  We're going to get married and pledge our love in front of our friends and family and that is the most important thing right now.

With gratitude to all those who have brought blessings into our lives,

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