Unlike probably a lot of people who read this blog, I don't have that many friends who are engaged, although the number is slowly rising. This past Sunday, I attended my first ever wedding of a really close friend. Our relationship was such that while we didn't necessarily interact every single day, I always knew that she was available if I needed it, and I hope she felt the same way about me. Hers was always the house I went to on Shabbat afternoon if I could drag myself outside. When my parents went away in the summers, her house was the one I always relocated to. The concept of that not being the case any longer was one I didn't comprehend until the very end of the wedding.
It's a strange mix of feelings - being overjoyed for a friend and yet depressed at your own loss. I didn't understand how to handle the situation. Could I just call her up like usual? How long did I have to wait until she had time for friends again? And I felt so incredibly guilty for not feeling as happy as I should due to all my own anxieties.
Then, last night, she called me and I had the weirdest epiphany. It felt so out of context, because she was married and yet her name came up on my phone like it always did and she was exactly the same person as before. I was completely overcome with this realization that things haven't changed as drastically as I had assumed. Perhaps it's only because this was my first experience with this stuff, but I was always under the assumption that people disappeared when they got married - that they got swallowed up by married life and entered into a world which was closed off to the rest of us until we, too, joined their ranks as married people.
Of course, things will be different, but not necessarily as different as I imagined. Married people are still there, they're just...married. And now that I understand that, I can allow myself to feel properly happy for my friend, which is what I should have been feeling all along. because she and her chatan are amazing people and make an awesome pair.