Behind the Scenes – the Big Day
The Big Day, as it is so often referred to, is not merely a symbol of two people sharing their devotion in the company of loved ones; all too often it also represents the internalized values of consumer culture. This means that stress, pressure, and anxiety make as much of an entrance as wedding cakes do.
In this newsletter’s Behind the Scenes, you can read about two of our community’s beloveds and their big day. Keep reading for the full article.
“Mentally, we had already taken our vows,” said Deborah about that day and her marriage to Lyndon at Earthaven on Saturday, November 9. As we started to create the ceremony, searching within ourselves for how it would reflect our values, the usual trappings of more traditional weddings just fell away. We opted for no rings, no bouquet. We borrowed a LOT from people, and decided that anything we bought had to be re-usable by the community.”
For them, the wedding was about bringing together the families of their origin with the cultivated family of this village.
Over 100 people, from as far west as Portland, Oregon, and as far north as New York, gathered in our Council Hall to bear witness. Yet it wasn’t the physical distance traveled that made this ceremony special, it was the emotional distance that got traversed.
The wedding wasn’t just a tribute to the love that Deborah and Lyndon share. It was a tribute to the love of a village for this couple and a tribute from two families that span the cultural divides of their respective lives in Texas and in Maryland. It was even a tribute to Deborah’s late partner, Chris, as many of his kin also gathered in support.
One could say the day commenced with the persimmon tree planting—a symbol of something that starts out small, grows over time, gets more stable, and bears fruit—intentions that Deb and Lyndon have for their relationship. Or maybe the big day got its metaphorical start a week earlier when a team of villagers held a tortilla-making work party, where corn that was grown on this land got soaked, ground, and rolled out into one of Lyndon’s favorite foods.
The contributions by community and family members were numerous. We became the wedding planners, the decorators, caterers, musicians, and space holders. Deb’s dad, the photographer. Kaitlin, the priestess.
Ancestors were named, the directions were called in, and people were invited to share as they felt called to. Folks shared their hearts in the form of blessings, prayers, songs, life anecdotes, family memories….
This day, this big day, seeded something more than the commitment that Deborah and Lyndon share—it allowed for the seeds of a life we are creating here at Earthaven to carry onward with the tailwinds of other’s lives.