It has been said that everyone ages a considerable amount in their first year out of college. I wholeheartedly believe that is true. I mentioned a few posts ago about a networking event for Elon students that will soon be joining the workforce. Upon returning to my apartment and discussing the event with my roommate, I remember telling her, "They were all so little! They looked like babies!" Thinking about it, they were only 1-3 years younger than I. But, they had a certain youthfulness about them. And those of us that have moved forward into the black hole of "real life" appeared older (not necessarily more mature, but definitely older.) Maybe it's the naivety that is gone from behind our eyes.
As the title of this post states, I have reached my universary. The one-year point of my un-marriage. There were many times throughout the year where I thought that this day (which was actually yesterday) would be my hardest day. I was plesantly suprised to find that not the case. It was almost like any other day, really. Yes, there were some reminders througout the weekend of the wedding that "wasn't to be" and the relationship that "crashed and burned" but, my mind and heart were at peace. It was almost like those things were never there - like they never existed in the first place. Am I completely whole again? Probably not. In fact, I probably will never be completely "healed". In a way, I will always have a twinge of pain - like a faint scar - that will remind me of how badly an individual can hurt another without doing any physical harm.
I spent the weekend in North Carolina with my family and friends. My grandparents were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary (I would have shared a wedding day with them had I gotten married) - - there was a grand party planned with all of thier family and friends in attendance. Irony definitely played a role in the 50th anniversary party -- the decor featured decorations and details that were carefully picked out for my own celebration. I thought it would be painful, seeing all of my "ideas" used for something else.. but it was heartwarming, really. Knowing that those things were being used for a celebration of love (real love) was the best thing I could have hoped to see. Seeing my grandparents dance together, loving each other for 50 years - has made me believe that it is possible to find love - even after a considerable amount of heartache.
It was wonderful to talk with some extended family members - those that I (sadly) don't get to see very often (Shout-out to Katy and Dave! hollaaa!) and to really spend some time with those I see more often, but I have missed so much since moving to NYC. I am so very blessed to have such wonderful people in my life.
So, I made it. I made it to the year after. And I'm surprisingly doing very well. But, like those from the networking event, I've lost some of the naivety that laid behind my eyes last year. I had to grow up.
Yes, those are some of the photos from my wedding portraits. For a long time, I felt the need to keep these hidden, but I figured it would be okay to post them because that girl in the photo does not exist anymore. Looking at them, it's like someone playing dress-up, pretending to be something, to feel something that is not there anymore. That girl is tucked away just like the dress and veil.
I am a new person - someone who is ready and excited to experience a life that is full of family, friends, and laughter - and someone who will always believe in love.