So last night, me and Mrs. Holmes headed out to Wimberley to witness the wedding of our friends Andy and Echo. If you've never been, I can only describe the Wimberley area as one of the most gorgeous parts of the Texas hill country. And on spring days like yesterday, it's a wee bit of heaven.
So this wedding, while traditional in many ways, was not what most Americans today would consider a "traditional" wedding. The bride wore no long trailing gown, choosing instead a simple white medieval-ish dress. The groom and his best man appeared to have stepped off of a Shakespearean stage, although nothing felt like a costume, and one certainly didn't detect anything as tacky as a theme. The invocation and the vows were earthy while still acknowledging the presence of the divine and the ageless wonder of love. And when the flower girl tripped and began bawling, there was no feeling that the perfect day had been ruined, but rather that an unexpected memory had just been made. All in all it was a most moving event.
I think what made it so very touching was that this wedding was so very much a direct expression of the two people at the center of it. In not one aspect, not one little area did you sense that the wedding industry had managed to sink its claws in. And that's what it is folks, an industry, a whole commercial sector that attempts to make people feel like if they don't have this kind of dress and this kind of tux and this many attendants all garbed in just such a fashion and you have to serve this much food and have this many guests and release this many virgin pure white doves into the air as a token of blah-de-blah-de-blah, if you don't have all this CRAP then your wedding will be total SHIT and everyone will POINT and LAUGH at you while you try to say your vows! When me and the Mrs. were in the planning stages of our own wedding, it seemed like we couldn't get away from this crap. There was actual effort involved to get away from it, but in the end we succeeded.
Beyond the commercial aspects, there was none of this wedding-day-only religion involved. You know what I'm sayin, people who you know for a fact aren't religious in the least, but just to avoid making waves or to please somebody's parents, they have a religious wedding ceremony. And sure, I guess that's fine if that's what you want, but it seems to the Holmes that faking faith just to please people who aren't involved in the marriage (ie, anyone except the people getting married) is basically just adding a pack of lies to an event that is supposed to be about two people committing their love, trust, basically their lives to one another....which kind of defeats the purpose of having a so-called religious ceremony, doesn't it? I know you don't know these people I'm writing about, but imagine the most eclectic hippie type people you know and picture them having a Christian wedding ceremony and you see how just not quite right it seems.
Now I'm not saying there's anything wrong with the "traditional" wedding or with religious wedding ceremonies, because for some people, that is the wedding that is right for them. The thing is though, it's not right for everyone, and it can be a challenge trying to break out of that mold and creating something that's right for you and yours. That's what me and Ash had to do, and that's what Andy and Echo did. It completely belonged to us, and always will. It's funny isn't it, how an event that is supposed to be all about you and the love of your life, about who each of you are and who you are together, how that seems to make so many people try to make you act like people that you're not.