Introduction (written c. November 17, 2012):
Okay… so I wrote this post a while ago, actually, when Selina was home for Labor Day and I was really struggling with jealousy over her wedding. I was sort of debating whether or not to even post this.
I decided to because a) well it’s honest and b) I think it says something that’s sort of important. Plus c) it might maybe be helpful if you’re thinking of getting married someday or if d) you have some extra space on your prayers list.
The Post (written c. September 3, 2012):
For those of you who don’t yet know:
My sister Selina is engaged.
I am engaged.
I am older.
She is younger.
She was engaged first.
I am getting married first.
Two words, people:
I don’t know how it happened! And I can hardly remember a time when I have found myself in a less satisfactory position. I have been engaged in a spiritual struggle lately, in which I have been so (SO) tempted to see my life as (as Meredith so wisely put it) “a zero sum game.” That means: Selina’s dress… takes away from my dress. Her flowers from my flowers. Her adorable doily-candle-holders from my I-don’t-have-anything-like-that-in-my-wedding(s).
Now I want you to notice something about these examples. Dresses, flowers, doily-candle-holders: they’re are all… things. Things! Really pretty things, but things nonetheless. It’s not that I’m jealous of Selina’s fiance. It’s that I’m jealous of her things.
That is silly. That is really, really silly!
The first and most important purpose of this post is to ask you all to please, please pray for me and for all brides or brides-to-be! Because I’m pretty sure (is it wrong to say I hope?!?!) I’m not the only one who feels this way. And I super-de-duper don’t want to, and I bet other brides don’t either. Because really — why are we all getting married? Oh yeah because we’re answering a vocation. And being united in a sacrament. And loving another person more than ourselves. And all sorts of other things that aren’t at ALL compatible with envy. So their sometimes-coinciding is, well, really uncomfortable.
The other primary purpose of this post is to say that brides today struggle with envy, jealousy and greed because of:
- Well, original sin, duh, but also and more importantly
- The constant assault on brides by the wedding industry. Which is often actually
- Assault on brides by the devil. Because what does the devil do? He attacks those things that are most powerful in the most insidious way possible.
- If you think I am going overboard here (see pt 7), yeah yeah yeah you’re not alone.
Nevertheless, I want to ask you to pray for us. For me, my sister, all brides (which now, as I’m re-writing this, includes Brianna! And my cousin Grace! Whoop! Our family is a-growin.) Because again, the devil likes to assault those things that are the most effective avenues of grace in our lives.
Mary, Queen of Peace, pray for us.
Addendum (Written January 7, 2013):
Selina and Andrew have set a date! Please keep them in your prayers, since Andrew just went off to Naval Officer Training (I think that’s what it’s called?) in an… undisclosed location? Just in case?
Anyway, he’ll be gone for at least three months, and he and Selina are only allowed written correspondence. They are doing really great though, and I’m so proud of my little sister and how maturely she is handling such a difficult wedding planning situation!
I was so afraid that even after Dan and I were married I might experience some sort of retroactive envy for Selina’s big day. But: so far so good? I’m hoping this is due to the marital grace people keep telling me about, and that it’s going to stick around.
I did, however, have a nightmare that Selina decided she wanted her reception theme to be: bilingual. Not that that makes any sense. The point is, all the toasters had to give their toasts first in English and then in Spanish. So I was freaking out at the reception trying to write a speech that was both as heartfelt as Maura’s at my wedding… and simple enough to be quickly translated into remedial Spanish.
It was horrible. I was all like, “A bilingual theme?? Seriously Selina?!”
Totally something she would do, too.
The sneaky little booger.