After 3 years of grad school, I am so proud to say that Chris has finally graduated from the Yale School of Drama! WOO HOO!!! I have ever been more proud of anyone in my entire life. And to make this time even more special for him so many special people showed up to support him throughout the weekend. Other than my own wedding day, I have never felt so much love in one place before. Family and friends really went above and beyond to rain down love on both Chris and me this weekend. I think that is what I will remember the most from this incredible weekend.
We had 17 people in town to celebrate with us. Chris and I had a very strict schedule planned for the weekend in order to keep things moving along smoothly, and it went incredibly well.
Friday night, Chris’ Mom and her boyfriend, Charles, Chris’ sister, Annie, and my family all got into town. We went out to dinner for pizza and enjoyed being with the smallest group of people we’d have all weekend.
On Saturday, we took the entire crew who had all arrived in town (17 people total) to New York for the day. The original plan was that we would all split up and do our own thing in smaller groups and then just meet up for dinner. But when I mentioned taking my side of the family to China Town, everyone decided to go! We took the entire crew (minus two who decided to go all athletic on us and walk the Brooklyn Bridge!!) to China Town and we didn’t lose one single person. Personally, I contribute this to excellent planning by the event coordinator (that would be yours truly) but instead I think it might be because it was so darn crowded you could only move about 3 ft. per 5 minutes. Its hard to loose people when they are morphed together by small, Chinese people.
That night for dinner we went to dinner at one of our favorite restaurants in the Theater District, Angus McIndoe (if you go, try the salmon with apple stuffing – WOW!). A few friends from New York joined us for dinner and let me tell you – the wine was flowing. We had a wonderful, alcohol-induced love fest. By the end of the night we were all friends. Didn’t matter that we were technically three different families. Didn’t matter that several of us were divorced or in a family world war. That night we were all there for Chris and you really felt that at the table.
Once we got back into New Haven on Sunday, we spent the day walking around the campus and showing the family where and what we’ve been doing for the past three years. And then, of course, on Monday was THE DAY. I think the pictures speak for themselves. Can you see the relief in mine and Chris’ face?
Granddaddy and Grandma Brown, Chris, and me
My sister, Ginny, Me, Chris, and Chris’ sister, Annie
Chris with my family
Chris, his sister, his mom, and me
It was a perfect weekend. And I can’t tell you how relieved that Chris and I feel. It literally feels like a weight has been lifted from my shoulders. While the weight of Chris going through school wasn’t on me, there was the constant pressure of being the only source of income, of wondering what would come next for us, of being chained to an academic schedule. I was really surprised how much pressure I was feeling. I didn’t realize it truly until this weekend when the weight lifted. I was almost lightheaded at some points.
And I cried. I told you that I would. I couldn’t help it. Chris looked so handsome in his cap and gown, and Yale is just so regal and majestic in their traditions that seeing Chris walk through gates that have seen over 300 graduating classes before, well, it would make anyone cry. But what happy tears!
I tell you something. I have sometimes thought about writing a book about mine and Chris’ relationship – something similar to what this blog is but the full story, starting all the way back when we were 15 years old. And while there are many reasons that this idea is truly a pie-in-the-sky thought, the most significant reason I can’t write this book is because stories are supposed to have ups and downs. There are supposed to be conflicts and resolutions. Fall outs and make ups. Fairy tales always have a dragon or evil queen in them, but so far Chris and I have just been blessed with roses and rainbows. I keep expecting a poisoned apple to fall in our paths, but we’ve been witch-free for 3 years. Now this doesn’t mean we don’t have our hang-ups and breakdowns. But we’ve weathered them, lived through them, learned from them, and moved on. I’m so full of happiness right now that I can’t wait to jump into the next phase of our lives. A new house! Chris’ new job! Maybe a baby eventually? Whatever that next phase is, I’m so ready for it.