No one cares that I live in Spain.
No one even seems to really care that I am married to a very exotic Spaniard named Mario. (Isn’t that an Italian name anyway? How’d that happen? Must investigate.)
Change often comes in small, incremental pieces—a new haircut, a five-pound weight loss, new decorations, the leaves falling slowly off the trees in autumn. It happens so that you barely notice it. That is until you look back and consider where you were twelve months ago and where you are now.
Twelve months ago, I was in the same place I’m at now: my parents’ house in Indiana, my childhood home. But twelve months ago I was in a completely different place, figuratively speaking.
In 2012, Mario got a job, and we decided we were moving to Madrid.
All that studying paid off
In 2012, my parents, brother, and sister(-in-law) went to Spain to visit for one very special occasion.
In 2012, it went from “I” to “we.”
In 2012, my brother got married to Colleen.
In 2012, we moved to Madrid.
In 2012, we attended several other couples’ weddings.
In 2012, I got a job teaching English to sixth graders and found it was a wonderful age.
In 2012, I met American women in Madrid, and some of them were married to Spaniards.
In 2012, Mario and I visited Sevilla and Córdoba.
In 2012, I came home for Christmas and realized that Spain may be where I live, but Indiana is my home.
In 2012, life changed. Life changed fast. I could say it all to you, in one breath, a rush of words and emotion that would leave you reeling. I could replay the year over in my head, wondering how I got to this point, this place right here—November 22, 2012.
In 2012 I did so many things. So many things changed in my life, in my family’s lives, in my friend’s lives. These things, there were good. They were wonderful and magical and joyful. So, dear 2012,now it’s my turn. Thank you. Thank you for:
So happy Thanksgiving, dear friends! If you’re in the States, please eat some stuffing for me! And—oh yeah—give your mom and dad a hug! They’re the only ones you’ve got.
If you came here looking for advice, I have none. I just wanted to tell you that planning a wedding is hard. Planning a wedding in another country/language is even harder. But, for me, planning a wedding in another country, in another language, and without my mother is the hardest. Sometimes a girl just needs her mom, ya know what I mean?
Mario’s mother has, of course, been there for me: taking me to find “the one” (I really hate using that phrase, as I don’t equate dresses with people), arranging manicure appointments, offering to go with me everywhere, even though she’s still working. So I’m, again, quite lucky.
I know of some American girls who have had their weddings in Spain, and they always assure me I can go to them with questions. The problem is, I don’t have any. I mean, to have questions about something, you have to have at least an intermediate-level understanding of it. And I’m not sure I get Spanish weddings yet. For example:
It’s true, you can do what you want. And I’m getting used to being somewhat weird. I don’t understand why every woman needs to get a new dress and go to the hairdresser, even if they’re not part of the wedding. I don’t understand why people will spend so much money, money that could be better spent elsewhere (this happens in the US too, just not as much with my friends/family/the people that I know).
So did you want advice? Here’s mine: take advantage of Spain, its food and wine and lifestyle. Don’t worry; hakuna matata. Because if anyone gives great life advice, it’s Disney.