Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Lawfully Wedded Widow

It's been interesting to be in my shoes and planning a wedding.  Lots of things come up that wouldn't be an issue to a "normal" bride.  Some random thoughts on that below.

Am I going to change my name?  Yes.  I'll be taking Sheldon's last name, and will be making Brian's last name my new middle name.  I plan to keep using "Boka" professionally, though, as all my professional references, degrees, certifications, publications, appearances, etc. are under that name.  I don't want to have anyone who is called as a reference to say, "Who?!" because they don't know me with my new name.

In terms of weddings, they bring out opinions from everyone.  About everything.  Who should or shouldn't be on the guest list.  Who should walk me down the aisle.  How many chairs should be on each side of the aisle.  What everyone should wear.  Whether we should have a cake or not. 

In all these opinions, what I really need to focus on is making the best decisions for Sheldon and me.  Still, these decisions are not easy.  On top of the normal 1,001 decisions to make, there is this:  What is the best way to honor Brian's memory and role in my life, while not taking away from what the day is, which is a celebration of the love between me and Sheldon? 

And of course, wedding guests love to critique.  It's at the corners of my mind, what people will say about ways I do (or don't) pay tribute to Brian.  I don't think I'm going to share the details of how I plan to do so before the wedding, or in any written form in the program or anything.  Those who are close enough to me will know from having talked to me how I will be honoring him that day.  Those who were close to Brian may recognize his footprint on the day in some of the details; and those who weren't close to him don't need to be specifically told which details can be traced back to him because they will all fit together beautifully whether you know the back story or not.

So what's my wedding going to be like?  It's less formal than many.  A ceremony in the park and a reception at our house, in the backyard.  There will be a dance floor and bar, and buffet-style bar-be-que.  I'm buying my flowers from a grocery store and making bouquets and boutonnieres with help from family and friends.  We are making most of our own food, with help from a neighbor.  We'll have a friend of a friend as the bartender, another friend as DJ, and a friend is officiating the ceremony.  We are writing our own vows, which will certainly be shaped by what I've gone through before (because that has shaped my ability to love, and it set the stage for our love).  We are making our own decorations, a process that has been in the works for a few months and is really coming together well now.  My dress is white, and I bought it from a traditional bridal store, but it is not full length and fou-fou-y.  The guys are wearing khakis and white shirts.  No monogrammed napkins, no ice sculpture, no lighted waterfall on the cake (until recently, we were thinking no cake at all).

Most of all?  Love.  Lots of love.

I can't wait for the wedding day to arrive!


Tuesday, May 7, 2013


Lately I've felt pulled in a million directions.  Am I doing all I need to be, all I can be doing, all I should be as a real estate agent, a lawyer, a fiancée, a friend, a sister, a daughter, a daughter-in-law, a soon-to-be daughter-in-law, etc.?  How about as ME?  As Wendy?  Am I taking care of myself? 

I've been having trouble sleeping and have had anxiety lately.  Not panic attacks, but heartburn, loss of appetite, tearful spells, and insomnia.  It seems that my to-do list grows and grows, even as I feebly cross things off.  And every time I turn around, I get another text, email or phone call -- and more often than not, it's someone needing something else.  Last night I went to bed at half past midnight (had to stay up to see the exciting double-overtime Spurs playoff win!) and after laying in bed awake until 3-something, finally got up and started doing things in the middle of the night/morning.  I started making a to-do list, emailing, and organizing for today.  Then I went to the couch to watch TV until I dozed off about 4 or 5...only to wake up a few hours later. 

One thing's for sure....I've neglected writing.  I've neglected self-reflection and me time.

But enough about me -- I feel like I'm letting people down all the time.  I know there are people waiting on me for things -- favors they've asked of me and that I agreed to do, cards I've been meaning to write, gifts I've been meaning to order and mail for various occasions, a guest room that remains unsuitable for the family visiting in a couple days, a stool sample I need to collect and get to the vet (nothing wrong - just routine testing), etc.  How do I get all these things done, and fulfill my social obligations to all my family and friends, while working and planning a wedding?  I feel like there are a lot of balls in the air, and it seems more keep getting thrown in my direction.

I'm trying to find some balance again....but please, bear with me while I tread water for a while.  Soon enough, I'll find my way back to a place where I can stand comfortably with my head above the water.