Bridal shower

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My mama and me

In April my family and friends threw me a beautiful bridal shower in Sacramento. Hosted by my aunts (including a great-aunt!) and my grandmother’s closest friends I was showered with so much love and sweet wishes for a happy, successful marriage.

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Elizabeth (friends since high school), me, and Noa (friends since we were 4 and 5 years old!)

Without any of the tacky games or bizarre pre-wedding rituals we feasted on a beautiful meal and my west coast relatives, soon-to-be-relatives and friends got to meet – many for the first time. (A favorite memory post shower, 9-year old almost-niece reflecting on meeting my mom said, “Mrs. Green is just so NICE. She’s SO nice!”)

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My adorable almost-niece and me

My mom’s sisters MC-d the event and their articulate and eloquent thoughts shaped an event that left me speechless. Each attendee had earlier written out advice for keeping a marriage strong and over the course of the shower my aunts read the cards aloud. Another favorite memory is my younger cousin’s apt “advice”: Don’t listen to me! What do I know? I’m 15! 

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Molly  and me (friends since first day of high school)

But the best part of the day was the presentation of a poem that EVERYONE helped write. (Email is an amazing thing!) Using my full name — Natanya Haviva Margalit Henshu Reuben Green* —  they created an acrostic that described who I am to them. This “bouquet of love,” as Aunt Debbie called it, was the most special gift to receive and I can’t wait to hang the framed poem on my wall to reflect on whenever I need an extra dose of love and support.

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***

A dedicated, smart, willful community of women is an amazing thing. I have been fortunate to watch my mother and grandmother lean in to engage with matters important to them and to witness the positive change they create in the world through their efforts and passion.

As I looked around the room at this special wheel of women, each a spoke in my life, I saw the things they do and have done: the psychologist and the mathematician, the fashion designer, the musicians and model, the comedian and actresses, the architect and the landscape designer, the social worker and the students, the real estate agent and the teachers… I saw the women who help make the world we live in a wonderful place to be and make my life a joy to share. Beyond their doing I saw their being: the way they love and share in one another’s joy, the compassion and empathy they express, the valuing of each women’s place and presence, the gifting and sharing of resources. It was a blessing to be a center of such a wheel for a time and I know that I left the afternoon ebullient and on air.

Thank you to my wonderful family and and friends for an afternoon to remember. Showered with love, indeed.

 

* Yes, I am fully aware that I have the best name ever. Specifically when playing a game that gives you points based on the number of letters in your name. 6th grade I’m looking at you.

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