Tuesday, June 30, 2009

My Pink in a World of Blue

There's no doubt that my world is blue.

My yard is a teenage boy's dream. Batting cage, soccer field, basketball court, trampoline, three dogs.

It's a good thing I really love blue.

Still, every woman needs a little pink.

I wear pink often. During this month's BWCA trip, I used my pink camp hat. A style usually used by fishermen, my hat is softly pink with some other pastels thrown in for good measure. Stained by three-years' camp use, it's still defiantly shouts "I AM WOMAN!"

I adore my girlfriends and their daugbrhters. We do ladies' lunches, girls' nights out, beach excursions, and we're now planning an NYC trip. I am blessed with girlfriends who are smart, funny, articulate, and strong. Warrior women indeed.

My favorite pink, though, is my role as a weddding coordinator at St Henry Catholic Church.

My first responsibility is to meet with the couple and give them a tour of the church. While touring I share information from the can-do and the absolutely-not-allowed lists. We spend about an hour together and we bond.

Between that first meeting and the rehearsal, we correspond via email or talk on the phone when the couple has questions. Some couples have more questions than others!

The night before the wedding, I conduct the rehearsal. We pray, talk, rehearse the procession, and walk through the entire service. Everyone with a job understands their role before the end of the rehearsal. Though I always shoot for an hour, I haven't had a rehearsal that was shorter than an hour and fifteen minutes.

On the day of the wedding, I spend six hours with the families. I act as the church's representative, greet family members, instruct the photographers and florists, and pin flowers on the appropriate participants. I monitor the time schedule, make sure the couple and wedding party eat a little food, and avert all manner and types of disasters. At the specified time, I start the wedding. During the service I act as sacristan, sound person, and janitor. Following the service, I restore the church to its original state and clear it of people before people start arriving for the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

This is not just a job for me. I invest all my energy in this couple's day. I pray for them, that the hope and confidence I see in their faces survives whatever life throws their way. I cry every time I witness a couple exchange vows. I fall in love with their parents, and am often invited to join them for the reception. At one memorable wedding, I was invited back to Columbia for a visit by the father of the bride who spoke no English and who offered me a blessing, kissing me on my left cheek, right cheek, and lips. He didn't know about my personal space issue, and I couldn't understand a word he was saying, but it was a delightful moment.

I make sure everything that's supposed to happen happens flawlessly. I have the perfect opportunity to be bossy at a time when people embrace a boss. I offer my hands and feet without any desire for recognition or thanks.

This is my pink and I cherish my opportunity to serve.

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