Sunday, February 16, 2014

The good, the bad and the scary

This afternoon, Ramon and I returned to my car parked on a small street in San Francisco and discovered I had left the front passenger window completely rolled down. Someone or something like an animal could have easily gotten inside. I could have returned to a find a raccoon in the back seat! Someone could have stolen the car or taken my tennis racket from the trunk!
None of those things happened. The car was just fine. And I was able to breathe a sigh of relief knowing that in the middle of an big city, you can leave your car unlocked for a few hours and it's okay. Well, this situation was probably more exception than rule in San Francisco, but it made me think of how tragedy is always one step or one careless mistake away from happening. Lately, I've developed a nervous fear of falling into the train tracks when I take BART or Muni. I imagine myself falling from the platform below and getting hit my a train or one of the streetcar trains rolling over me as it leaves my stop. It's a strange fear and I'm not sure what's behind it, but I start feeling anxious when I wait for a train to approach the platform. I could be channeling fear of another kind, fear I don't want to acknowledge. I would say I've been remarkably happy the past few years and even more so since Ramon and I became engaged. It's exciting to finally feel like I have someone in my life who can be an amazing partner for as long as God let's us. At the same time, I have a hard time thinking through all the undesirables: what if one of us died suddenly or suffered from a terrible illness or lost a job? So many "what ifs" exist that could instantly change our lives. I try not to fully contemplate those things. I'm too busy thinking about the wedding and how many things I've been able to check off the to do list already. It seems petty and it kind of is. I am far more excited about sharing my life with Ramon, but I also know that weddings are an important to celebrate life, love and family. I'm trying to keep that in perspective, but it's hard since weddings are also so much about material things and spending money like you never have. When it comes to paying for wedding expenses, it's as if your money is only worth half of what normally is. Things are not necessary expensive, but they sure do seem overpriced. You might tell yourself, I found an amazing dress for $1,000. Then you realize, I just spent $1,000 on ONE item of clothing for ONE day of my life. Suddenly you feel like you are raiding your savings for something ridiculous.
The bigger fear of course is not so much "will this be an awesome wedding?" but more, what does it mean to join your life to that of another person? How do we know we can sustain our relationship and keep making each other happy as we have so far? What serious life events, tragedies and challenges will we face as time goes on? Life has been all cupcakes, slideshows and bridal magazines for me these days. I have to admit I'm enjoying planning my wedding as hard as it is sometimes, but I know it's just icing on the cake of life. The real part, the substance, is underneath, a result of many ingredients mixing, baking and solidifying into heavenly food. That's the part worth stressing over.

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