This chuppah is extra special, as it was made by Lauren’s great uncle, Marty and his son, Gary, for
wedding. They made it out of cedar and cypress to evoke an ancient custom. We
are told that long ago, upon the birth of a daughter, her family would plant a
cypress, and upon the birth of a son, his family would plant a cedar. When a
couple planned to marry, a branch would be taken from each of their trees to
make their chuppah to symbolize their unity. Jordan
I was honored to officiate Lauren’s sister, Alex’s wedding to Brian Marques under this very chuppah. Lauren and Alex are honored to continue what has become now a family tradition of marrying under this chuppah, which is fittingly inscribed with the words of the Song of Songs, “I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine.”
Here are the remarks I shared with them and their guests:
One of the first questions I ask every couple is, "What are your expectations of your wedding?" However, before I even ask the question, I ask the couple to imagine they work in the creative side of an advertising agency. I ask them to imagine they have a marker and a whiteboard, and that they are brainstorming about a new campaign. They are putting whatever words come to mind on the board.
When I thought of Lauren and Alex's relationship, I found myself going through the same exercise. The words and phrases I wrote down were:
Being yourself like you can with no one else
OK with being needy
If you think about it, that is not a bad list. Sure, marriage is about love and passion and fireworks, and being swept off your feet. But, really what we are doing when we commit to marriage is so much deeper. The person I am today is not the person I am tomorrow. The same is true with each of us. So, not to discourage any of you, but marriage if not a gamble, it is an educated guess. Now, hopefully, it is a well educated guess, based on solid evidence, but still it is a guess. It is a guess, that I of tomorrow and you of tomorrow will make the same choice we make today.
Do you know what you need, to be able to take that leap of faith? You need to feel safe, and comfortable, like you do with no one else. You need to have the type of trust you have in no one else. These qualities can then allow you to relax, and shed all pretenses, so much so that you can truly be yourself, like you can with no one else. This feeling, which has no equal, can then allow you to do what our hyper competitive American life almost never allows us: to let go, to be vulnerable, to be needy, and to know that your lover is there by your side, through it all. And to know, and to cherish the moments, when you will do the same for him or her.
Now, if you paid attention, you will notice that I just used all of the words from my brainstorming list about Lauren and Alex's relationship. That is no mere coincidence. I believe this is exactly what they have. And I find the idea of this type of relationship beautifully described in the quiet words of Regina Spektor's song, The Call:
"It started out as a feeling, which then grew into a hope. Which then turned into a quiet thought, which then turned into a quiet word. And then that word grew louder and louder, til it was a battle cry: I'll come back when you call me; no need to say good-bye. I'll come back when you call me; no need to say good-bye."