Sunday, January 31, 2010

What is the BEST day of your life?

Check out Perpetual Party Planner's blog this week about her dislike of vendors and people who claim that your wedding will be the *BEST* day of your life or your most special day.  It's a pretty good explanation of how us brides get sucked into believing that our entire being is wrapped up in our identity as a bride.  So does that mean that life as we know it ends after our wedding day?  Of course not!

The day my daughter was born was definitely not the best day of my was probably the most scariest.  You see, after 12 hours of labor, I had to have an emergency c-section because my daughter suddenly had a prolapsed cord.  For those of you who don't know what that is, it means that she somehow moved inside of me and landed on the umbilical cord thus cutting off her blood flow and oxygen supply.

Without being too gruesome, I will tell you that she was saved by the nurses who noted the situation immediately and rushed me to emergency while calling my doctor (who was at home since I wasn't ready to deliver for a few more hours and he'd been there all night with me).  The nurses quickly prepped me for surgery and took turns trying to 'push' my daughter back up the birth canal to keep her off the cord.

My doctor walked in less than 15 minutes later and immediately picked up a scalpel and cut her out.  At which point, she was given a 0 Apgar score...that means she was lifeless, no color, no breathing, no crying, no movement...nothing.  She had to be fully resucitated and placed on a respirator and taken up to the NICU where she stayed for the next 5 days. 

Even sharing all this brings tears back to my eyes (I haven't thought about it in so long).  My entire family was there at the hospital as were her father and his family and they were all in tears and worried about me and the baby.  Thankfully, my daughter is totally fine and we both made a speedy recovery...well, with a little pain on my part for several weeks.

The day you give birth is supposed to be one of the best days of your life.  For me, it was almost the worst as I almost lost my daughter.  But the anticipation and excitement leading up to that moment had me and our family giddy with anxiety and joy...and then that all changed unexpectedly.

My point is that no one day will (or should) ever be the absolute best day of your life...for life does not end once you reach an accomplishment nor does it end after the immediate loss of a loved one or severe tragedy.  Life is made of and built upon many different stories, memories, accomplishments, tears of joy and sadness...good and bad. 

As an anal and obsessive bride-to-be, I totally get how the past year has been wrapped up in my planning the wedding...but if all of these wonderful little plans I am preparing all fall apart and don't work out the way I hope they do on wedding day, what then?  Will I die?  Will I roll up in a bawl and tell Mr Fix It that I can't go through with it?  Of course not.

It's so great to be excited about things and get crazy silly obsessive about them and let the anticipation build up.  Just remember that these things...these momentous joyful circumstances and experiences of your life...are merely stepping blocks to get you to the next big event.  They're something to look back on with massive emotion and be thankful that you experienced them, that you made it through them, that you got to share them with other people (persons) you love who love you back and were there to support and encourage you. 

I will never say that my wedding was the best day of my life* just as the day my daughter was born was not the best day of my life...but you know what was amazing?  The day I saw my daughter cry and follow me for the first time and I recognized that she knew who I was and needed *me*...the day I left my daughter at school for the first time and all the days I went back to those schools to watch her receive awards and participate in plays.  I was in tears the day I watched her all-star softball team make it all the way to the California Junior Olympic State Championships when she was 10 years old.

Please remember:  Your wedding *should* be one of the most amazing, celebrated and hopefully special and memorable days of your life, but life doesn't end the day after it's over...remember that your wedding is only the beginning.

*  I should state that I do absolutely hope that my wedding will be a freaking ridiculously awesome amazing and ONE of the best days of my life - it should be considering all the money, planning and people that are going into the process and will be joining us that day!


Bicoastal Bride said...

I love this post and agree with you 100 percent. I also hope my wedding will be one of the best days of my life, but feel that life truly is a journey made up of so many experiences and emotions that it’s often impossible to identify one day or moment as the “the best.” In so many of life’s experiences, it is entirely possible to feel joy, pain, fear and other emotions all at once.

If I had to pinpoint one day of my life that has been the best so far, I wouldn’t necessarily be able to do it. I can certainly identify accomplishments and experiences that were the best, such as meeting Stephen, getting my job here in D.C., and becoming the first person in my family to earn a college degree. But even during some of those moments, there were certainly difficulties I was facing in my life that I also remember as being part of the experience. Hardly anything is ever so clear-cut as simply and unquestionably “the best.”

Em said...

Very very well said. I definitely believe (and expect) my wedding day to be *one of* the best days of my life. It's a monumental event where I pledge to spend the REST of my life with one person. But I know there will be other "best days" as my life goes on. Again, loved this post :)

PartyPlannerGal said...

Thanks for the link love! That is a scary story about your daughter's birth, so I can see why that day wasn't the "best" day of your life. I think it's a healthy attitude to not count on certain days being the best day ever - if so, it would mean that nothing else would quite compare ever again, and that's a sad thought.

I want my wedding to be awesome, too! But I hope it's not the best day, or else I will have peaked at 29!

Sarah Ann said...

You know, I had a teacher that used to say that if that one particular day was the best day ever in your life, why live through the rest? If it never got any better than at that moment, why bother? I admit this is a bit pessimistic, but I think the idea behind it is really true.

Mrs T said...

I have no doubt your wedding will be one of the best days you ever have!

Gaynor said...

I totally agree that it will be one of the best but not THE best day, as there should be so much more to look forward too!

I definitely think it will be fabulous tho!

Chic 'n Cheap Living said...

Definitely. Stacey, I don't know how you put together such well thought out posts so frequently.
It's so true though - can we really say one day will be a best day? Not exactly, but we can plan to have a great time with the ones we love.

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