This past weekend was my niece’s, wedding. It was a delightfully, extravagant affair. And everyone was there.
Since Jim’s death I have not handled large crowds well. I prefer the company of a few close friends. I was a little apprehensive about attending this wedding. There were close to 100 people in attendance. Now that is a lot of people. I also knew that I would know very few of them. Because it was family and I needed and wanted to be there, I knew I would have to bite the bullet and attend. And, you know, I had a good time.
We stayed near Norwalk, Connecticut at what used to be a Monastery and is now the Dolce Norwalk Conference Center and Hotel. A beautiful property with hiking trails and tennis courts among many activities it offered. And, I had my own room. When I was full of conversation and needed a break, well, there was my room or the hiking trails.
If I need a break from all the activity and people interaction, it is important for me to find alone time, no matter where it is. The nice thing about this property was that it offered enough space to those of us who needed regrouping time.
I also enjoyed getting away with my sister, Ginny, on Saturday, before the wedding. We went to an estate sale and then drove around the towns of Norwalk and Westport, CT. I even got my feet wet in Long Island Sound. My sister and I travel well together. The driving about and checking out homes and pretty places is something we have done since we were children. My dad love to go for rides and check out how everyone else lived.
The wedding took place at Waveny Hall in New Canaan, CT. It is a lovely open space park with a house that reminds me of Downton Abbey. It was built as a private estate in a beautiful natural setting.
There was an implied formality to this event, and yet, it felt very comfortable and relaxed. After the formal sit down dinner the party took off. There was terrific music and the dancing was fun. Although there were many different ages of people there, the gathering had a feeling of inclusiveness and age did not appear to make a difference.
What did I do when I needed a time out? I went to the bathroom. At one point my oldest sister, Ginny and I found a bench to sit on out on the lawn. I am learning there are always ways to disappear for a bit and then come back in again. Funny that I should be doing this now.
Jim was an introvert, he could only take groups of people for a short time and then he too would disappear. He would take a walk outside, go to the library, find a spot to read and if he was at a Scottish Ball, there was always the men’s room. I know he needed that time to recover a bit. Being an introvert is hard in a large group situation.
Needing some space and time is fine, yet I think that what often happens with me is that I disappear and I don’t tell anyone I need some time to recover. This can lead to misunderstandings. I want to learn to stop assuming others know what I am doing. Just like all communication, if I don’t say anything then how do they know? Hmm. An insight, I think. I want to be honest and up front and if the other person or people don’t understand or are offended then I cannot be responsible for their response. And I don’t need to apologize. Right Nancy?
The wedding was grand. My niece made a beautiful bride. It was a delightful evening and I am very glad that I attended.
The next time may be a bit less stressful.
I am still finding my way.