Adrienne #59

     Two people very close to me are getting married within the next couple of months. Both weddings are giving me this giddy, excited feeling and I've been spending a lot of time down in Soho going into little boutiques and clothing stores that I would normally never shop in to try to find an appropriate dress for both events. My friend Beau planted the idea in my mind that getting dressed up for a wedding is cool so now I've been on this frustrating and exasperating search for the perfect outfit. Something borderline 'normal' (this means no studs, no plaid print, and nothing rubber or leather) but also something that I won't feel like a total ass once I wear it (this means no taffeta, no pastel colors, and no flower prints). At my best friend's wedding, I'm also going to be giving the wedding speech and so my mind has been churning and turning over all of the wonderful things that I want to say about Wendy and her partner Noah. I mean, I have known both of them for almost half of my life. I have been completely in love with them since the moment I laid eyes on them. So where in the world do I find just a few choice words to describe my love for them, their love for each other, and what this wedding means for everyone who is a part of their lives? It's an intimidating task, but I know that I will find the words and that they will come from my heart.
     I remember a few years back my friend Leslie was getting married. Leslie was the person who first got me into punk rock back in high school and I had known her for forever. When she told me she was getting married, I completely flipped out in the worst possible way. You see, I used to see marriage as total bullshit. That getting married meant you were the possession of another human being. That you were no longer an individual, but that everyone would just see you as someone's wife. I used to feel that love didn't have to be sanctioned and verified by the government. Who the fuck was the government to tell me that my love for another person was real? Why would I want to get married and support a system and an institution that has a history of oppression and degradation? Leslie and I actually got into a fight over the fact that she was getting married and didn't speak to each other for months because of it. I just couldn't see past my viewpoint and my disagreement with her decision and she couldn't get past the fact that her feelings had been hurt. And trust me, looking back on it, she was completely justified in having hurt feelings. We finally ended up talking and making up before the wedding was taking place and I winded up going with my Mom and even cried during the ceremony, although I still stuck by my guns and ultimately didn't support the institution of marriage. I always figured that I would meet that special someone and just live with them for the rest of my life and that marriage would never come into the picture. I used to joke around that if I met someone that I would just live with them for around 10 years, then get engaged to be married and be engaged for 20 to 30 years and then maybe when I was 80 or 90 I would agree to get married. Maybe.
     So how did I get from the point of being willing to break up a friendship with someone I'd known and loved for years and years over the fact that they're getting married to being giddy and excited about the two weddings that are coming up in the future? I made a choice. That's right, I made a simple choice. I realized that it's not worth getting all worked up over and upset about because ultimately it is only a wedding. It is a marriage. It's not something that is going to destroy civilization as we know it and it's not going to bring about the fall of human kind. It is simply a choice that people make. They either choose to get married or they don't choose to get married. It's that simple.  Basically, most of life comes down to choices. The choices that we make day to day. We choose to feel a certain way when we wake up in the morning, we choose to react to situations in whichever way we want, and we have a choice when it comes to how we view life. Every single aspect of your life comes down to a choice that you've made. You can't get a job because you have a foot long green mohawk and tattoos on your face and a piercing on every single orifice? Well, that a choice that you've made. By choosing to dress or look a certain way, you have made the choice to have a more difficult time finding a job. I wish it wasn't the case, but sadly enough most of the people hiring aren't going to be punks that think you look cool. Most potential jobs will dismiss you the second you walk in the door looking like that. But you are the person that made the choice to look a certain way and so you have to live with that choice. Another example is the words that we use. A lot of people define certain words as offensive and others as not offensive. Ultimately, it's the power that we put into the words that give them any meaning or power whatsoever. A lot of people consider the word pussy to be an offensive and negative word. As with any word, it can definitely be used in a derogatory way. But when I lived down South, I was singing in a band for a short while called Alabama Thunder Pussy. I loved the band, the people in the band with me were great and I had absolutely no problem with our band name. Our use of the word wasn't derogative in any way and it had no power attached to it besides being a part of a great band name. Basically, it's just a word. It's not a bad word. It's the way we choose to view it and the way people choose to use it that makes it good or bad. Any word in the human vocabulary can become "bad" if people use it with lame intentions. But the bottom line is that it is our choice to be offended or not offended by the use of the words around us.
     We also have a choice when it comes to our emotions and feelings. A lot of times, people feel as if they are out of control. As if they can't help the way that they feel or that their emotions are controlling them. But if you think about it you have a huge spectrum of emotions from which to choose and it is your choice to react to a situation in whichever way that you want Your boyfriend cheated on you? Well, you can either choose to feel crushed and destroyed and as if you will never love anyone ever again. Or you can choose to feel that he fucked up because you are the hottest, most amazing woman that he will ever find and he just lost out on being with you. That it wasn't your loss, but his loss. You can whimper and tuck your tail between your legs and slink away, or you can stand tall with your chest out proud and be confident with yourself and where you stand. It's all within your grasp and it's all in the way that you wish to view the events in your life. Within your heart and your soul, you have a whole world of emotions and feelings. Some of them you may be on very familiar terms with and some feelings might need more exploring and understanding. But you always have the choice to pick and choose from that world and depth of feelings from within you.
     So that's what I did. I thought long and hard about why my friendship with Leslie faltered for those few months and about what marriage really means. I made a choice to accept my friends and to understand and accept the decisions that they make in their lives. To be excited about the weddings. To be willing to celebrate the union of people that I love and care about. To look at that whole world of emotions and feelings within me and not limit myself to what I think I ought to feel or to some outdated ideal that doesn't suit me anymore. To pick and choose the creation of my world and my views and my ideals.

Adrienne Droogas