Friday, March 18, 2011

Ups and Down

Im warning you, this blog is going to sound weird, and probably bipolar to boot.

But my mood has been really down lately. Lately being as of Monday night to be precise. Here is why: This wedding is stressing me out, and I’ve still got over a year to go. It hasn’t got anything to do with Jeff, or with being stressed by how I will look, how it will look, or anything like that. I am terrified of mixing my mother’s side and Jeff’s family. Just thinking about it is giving me the shivers.
I don’t know how I will make everyone happy, how people will get along, how anything will happen. I knew when I started going out with Jeff that this was going to be difficult, which is why we kept it secret for the first month of our relationship. Jeff and I were basically raised in the old mentality, French vs. Mohawk, Mohawk vs. French. I was never allowed to go into Kahnawake and Jeff was strongly discouraged to have French friends. We were both brought up with our parents and families having strong negative opinions about the opposing side, and it’s a mystery how Jeff and I actually got together in the first place. All that to say our families have very little chance to actually coming together in joy. They met once, when we moved out to our first apartment. Tension was already in the air because of a fight that we had had with Jeff’s mother kicking us out when I was very sick. Feathers were ruffled, and intense dislike was in the air. My mother actually almost fought with Jeff’s grandmother, and I believe that the only reason why they didn’t is because I came into the room. The move took all of two hours. How am I supposed to believe that everyone will be able to put aside years of violent history and hatred to come together in some beautiful fairy-tale wedding story? How am I supposed to make sure no one will fight and ruin what’s supposed to be a day filled with joy and peace and love? Both sides are looking at us like were crazy trying to plan something which can only be disastrous; and some are more reluctant than others. Jeff’s mother actually suggested she would pay for the whole wedding if we just eloped somewhere alone. And I'm supposed to believe that I will be able to bring them together for a whole day? Don’t even get me started on how I'm stressing over what will happen when Jeff and I will have children...
All that to give some history as to why I've been devoting time to try to find some sort of thing for the wedding that would possibly bring some cohesiveness to the three families. And I had thought I had found a low budget, super idea which I read off of some internet website or other. Basically, everyone likes to bake, and everyone has some dessert they are ‘the best’ at. So I thought why not make a dessert bar, where Jeff’s grandmother could make her date squares, or my mother could make poudding chomeur, or my cousin make baklava? With cute little insignia which would say who had made what, it would be sure to create conversation, with people comparing or asking for recipes. Hope makes you stupid. It made me stupid enough to actually believe in this enough to tell my mother, who immediately shot down my idea. ‘Why the hell would I ask anyone else how to bake something I know very well how to make? If you think I'm going to go to your wedding and make desserts you’re out of your mind’.  Ouch.
So since then, I've been stumped. I'm feeling low. I'm starting to consider Jeff’s mother’s proposition even though it is the furthest thing from what I want. I don’t know how this is going to work out. People tell me, who cares about others you shouldn’t care about what anyone else thinks, but I can’t do that. This is my family. That is his family. I feel like I'm living in a soap opera. Next episode on the Cynthia’s Life Show, how Cynthia is dealing with her issues about walking up the aisle without her biological father. Ugh.


  1. First of all; my heart totally goes out to you- it is a difficult decision indeed.

    A while ago when I was dating Guillaume, I felt the same. My anti-French family vs- his anti-English family. His parents didn't even invite my mom inside for coffee after a 1 1/2hr drive! It was awkward. I often wondered how our lives would intertwine without cutting one of the families off. When he stopped wanting to go visit my mom and stay at her place but we were constantly going to his parents' place- I was livid. So I know what you mean when you say family is important.

    I think that your mom throwing off your dessert idea was kind of rough, I mean- yeah you're going to YOUR DAUGHTERS' wedding. Feel free to help out and make this the happiest day of her life.

    I'd say that (haha okay I saw it done on a bride show- I think Bride SOS) you need to have the 2 families- at least the dominant members- all sit down BEFORE the wedding and talk, patch things up- for the sake of you and Jeff. It would take stress off of the actual wedding date. Maybe before arranging the family meet, sit down with each family individually (you and Jeff) and discuss any problems or grievances- and then have bygones be bygones.

    You can't start a "new" life together with problems from the past tagging along causing problems.

    Also maybe stop racking your brain and ask your mom and his mom, your Greek grandmother, whoever you want to feel "part" of your wedding- what they think you should do to include that part of their heritage. I mean keeping in mind that you have a limited budget.

    In the end, know that you have me- and I will be here holding your hand along the way. Je Tm beaucoup! xo

  2. I seriously just wrote you the longest comment every and google ate it... again.

    Nutshell: Have a private wedding. Just parents and possibly siblings in a church followed by a sit-down meal at your home if possible. People may complain but you know what, if they love you, they will come. A wedding day is first for God's glory, second for you and your spouse's enjoyment, third for your friends and families to enjoy. We have the tendency to invert that order, don't we? Stick to your guns!! I know the grandmothers dream of a big beautiful wholesome abundant wedding that will have a write-up in the Gazette, but if family tensions make that impossible anyway, there's not much use in inviting a bunch of people to a stressful banquet you can't afford, eh? There is an established precedent in Catholic culture for private weddings. If that appeals to you, just do it. Elopements are only appealing because they avoid the awkwardness of "why" isn't everybody else invited/coming. Simply say you prefer it small and affordable. Spend one honeymoon week seeing the sights in Montreal, and spend the second one visiting loved ones and celebrating (or having them over, or going out with friends, whatever).