Eds. note.: Happy 11th wedding anniversary to our columnist Aisha Saeed & her husband Kashif!
Sleep deprivation is an ugly dragon of a beast. Allow me to describe it, for I know it intimately. It is at once amorphous and concrete with a uniquely menacing gait. Its tentacles are dark and wiry—firm. It wraps you in its fold, wrings you out, leaving you completely disoriented.
But that’s not the bad part.
The bad part is how it fogs a beautiful blue sky. How it lures you into believing that this hazy reality is all that was and will ever be. How you look at your home, the piled laundry, the cluttered family room, and try as you might to use your rational mind, all that emerges is the one singular thought It’s no use, I’ll never get on top of any of this.
And then, along comes the dragon slayer.
Editors’ Note: Happy 10th anniversary, Aisha & Kashif!
Unlike most girls, I never daydreamed about my wedding day. The marriage, yes, but the actual choosing the dress, cakes and caterers never appealed to me. Once I met Kashif, I daydreamed about the trips we would take, the dinners I might botch and the things we would discuss on our journey through life.
But the wedding? Not so much.
The thought of sitting on a raised stage with a velvet veil and 200 pairs of eyes staring at me, discussing my clothes, the groom, and whether the food was better than the wedding last weekend or the bride prettier or uglier than the one before, was not my idea of a romantic and beautiful ceremony. Me? I’d rather have stood on a beach, the ocean waves lapping in the distance with my close family and dear friends by my side while we committed to one another for life.
But at 21, raised in a tight-knit and far-flung Pakistani-American family I knew there was no point in trying to persuade my parents of a wedding any other way than the way they had always dreamed of. Besides, however I got married was irrelevant to me; I was marrying Kashif, this was what mattered most. If my parents found joy in the traditional, lavish wedding, I could give this to them as my joy lay in the marriage this wedding would give me.
Weeks after we got married, the wedding pictures arrived. I grinned as I popped open the box, and then promptly stared in horror as picture after picture showed not a bashful bride grinning on her wedding day, but instead, a girl in a lovely red grown, a beautiful groom by her side – and a frown the size of Montana.
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