My husband and I have chatted about this recently because we both LOVED our wedding and were super excited about it and our marriage, but at the same time we don’t want to feel terribly proud of it. It’s a decision, not an accomplishment. The accomplishment – years of marriage – comes later.
I couldn’t tell you what the most “important” day of my life so far has been. There have been significant moments, life-changing moments, proud moments, happy moments, etc. but there’s not one that stands out as the most important. They’re all a piece of my story.
My proudest day would be my undergraduate graduation. I was the first in my family to graduate from college, and I went to the nation’s #1 public university, graduating with honors. It was a dream fulfilled. I loved every second of college. It was by far my proudest day. Most important? not necessarily. And it also wasn’t my happiest. It was bittersweet because I didn’t want to leave.
Perhaps a larger accomplishment was my law school graduation, but I hated law school, barely got through the last year, and was just so relieved to be done that my graduation day was less of a celebration of an accomplishment and more of a celebration of not having to be miserable anymore. And it was also scary and bittersweet because I had no idea what I was doing next. It was an extremely important day in my life, but it doesn’t carry the same type of feelings I have about my wedding day or my undergrad graduation.
While it was not my proudest day, my wedding day was easily the happiest day of my life. My husband feels the same way. I’ve had many, many happy moments in life, but no single DAY rivals my wedding day. It was happy and wonderful from start to finish. There was no family drama. I was not stressed. Everything went perfect and everything was beautiful. It was a day of celebrating love, of seeing a couple off on a lifelong journey, of celebrating with our nearest and dearest, of wishing us well. From the moment I woke up to the moment we fell asleep it was by far the happiest day of our lives. There was not one time when I was worried, upset, uncomfortable, awkward, hurt, or anything except excited, warm, loved, and so full of love and bliss.
Contrast that with days I would consider my “proudest” days: finishing my first marathon, winning my first asylum case, etc. Those were amazing, important, wonderful days. But they certainly weren’t my happiest. Running a marathon is kind of miserable. Sitting in court arguing about horrible horrible things is not fun. But the feelings of accomplishment at the end of it all are way stronger than any feelings of pride I felt at my wedding.
So…wedding = happiest day. Other things = proudest days, significant days. Apples and oranges.