Last weekend, I had my bachelorette party. For anyone who hasn't had a bachelorette party, I highly recommend it. It's a weekend cleverly disguised as celebrating the marriage between two people, but in reality is just a time where all of your friends come together for a weekend and constantly tell you how great of a human they think you are. I personally pretended to be bashful and humbled, of course, saying things like, "you guys, you've already done too much! I don't need all of this." But, if I'm being completely honest, I've been preparing for such a weekend my entire life.
I had a lot of ideas about what the weekend would look like. I pictured us in robes. We would be mellow and poised and mysteriously well-groomed, like the women in couch ads. We would speak to each in hushed voices as we sipped our second and final glass of red wine for the night and watched the sun go down. We would sit in nature and reflect on life and the times we'd shared together. We'd have deep discussions about the concept of marriage and the implications of me and my betrothed promising our lives to each other. We would be grown up women doing grown up things, whatever the hell that means. I even went so far as to express these ideas to my best friend, Caroline. "I don't want the weekend to be too crazy," I suggested. "Not too much alcohol, nothing too planned. Just all of us together being couch model-y, please."
Instead what I got was a flurry of temporary tattoos, Justin Bieber songs, a mechanical bull, bar dancing, cigarettes, general tomfoolery, and an abundance of penis straws. I had zero red wine. I lost my voice screaming to Cascada's Everytime We Touch at the impromptu dance party we threw ourselves in the rental house's kitchen until 3:00 in the morning. There were pictures taken that weekend that should rise up into the cloud and live out the rest of their days unseen by anyone.
It was one of the most divine experiences I have had in all my 25 years.
But here's the thing: had my best friend not known me better than myself and proceeded in planning the staring contest I'd requested, it would have been a sacred weekend all the same. The events that unfolded were incredible, yes, but the weekend wasn't made by its (extremely thoughtful and well-planned) agenda. It was made by the pure, unadulterated goodness of the people participating in it.
And as much as I really would recommend everyone having such a weekend, I wouldn't recommend my weekend to anyone. Because my people are my people and your people are your own. My people let me give them a haircut and wore flower crowns and threw me into a mechanical bull pit by my ankles. Your people might, indeed, decide to robe you and cut you off after one glass of wine. Or give you no wine or, God forbid, no robe. Who knows? Not me, they aren't my people. But whatever the case, the people with you will be your tribe and they will speak your language of celebration. They will gather around you and overwhelm you with the joy only their friendship can bring. You will be in the comfort of their acceptance and warmth and you will literally not have to give a single fuck about what other people think for an entire 48 hours because everyone there knows you and is like, "hell yes, we are absolutely with that girl."
What a treasure. In a life that is too often filled with second-guessing and seeking to measure up, what an absolute gift it is to rest in the sanctuary of your own community.
And, as with any gift given, there is only one thing left to say: thank you.
Thank you, deeply and sincerely, to all of you who came to my side and loved me hard last weekend. Thank you for requesting Biebs at every single bar we went to and dancing on the floor with the conviction that can only come from true friendship and too much champagne. Thank you for loving me long before this weekend and for the love I know you will give long after. You people are my guiding light and my daily reminder of the immense love that this universe radiates every damn day. I am forever grateful that you allow me to call you a friend.
Thank you, thank you, thank you.
And really you guys, you've already done too much. I don't need all of this for the wedding weekend...