The Wonder and Mystery of Marriage


They married on the one year anniversary date of the day they met, May 1, 2015. They planned the simple, yet richly meaningful celebration with high efficiency, low stress, and much happiness–in just 29 days. Polly had waited a long time for Mr. Right, as had Chris for her, and when she proposed to him in early April, they began planning immediately.

I woke on their wedding day to rain that had tapered off enough by mid-morning that Chris sent an email saying the wedding would take place on Raven’s Roost Lookout on the Blue Ridge Parkway at 2:30 pm, as opposed to Plan B, on the huge porch of their secluded home. The day remained overcast and humid as we approached the Parkway and we could see fog covering the mountaintops ahead.

When we ascended the mountain, the fog slowly dissipated as we drove the seven miles to Raven’s Roost. There, as we waited for everyone to arrive, the fog continued to disappear. By the time Polly and Chris arrived several minutes later, sunshine had replaced the fog with warmth, light, and a lovely deep blue sky with puffy white clouds.

The sunshine also brought a warming to my heart that swelled into a belief that the universe was gifting us all with a loving affirmation for Polly and Chris’ union. I also felt we were not only graced by the presence of our Creator, but also in the presence of beloved family spirits who had left us long before this day.

The hand-written ceremony was delivered by long-time friend Anne Tallent, Polly and Chris exchanged their personal heart-felt vows, the ceremony concluded, and the newly married couple kissed. Joy surged in all our hearts with the wonder and mystery that brought them to this day.

In the heavens above, our mountaintop must have appeared to suddenly burst with tiny dancing lights as cameras clicked while we all basked in our joy.

When the photos were completed, we all prepared to leave just as the second numinous moment arrived. We were bending into our cars to begin the drive to the reception, when the sun began to fade and the sky transformed back to gray clouds. When we reached the bottom of the mountain, sprinkles of rain arrived and stayed the rest of the day.

Meanwhile, we all—the wedding party and guests—gathered happily inside the reception restaurant and enjoyed a lovely afternoon in everyone’s company. At one point, as I sat quietly for some minutes and gazed at Polly and Chris, his family, their friends, and listened to the joy, happy conversation, laughter, and other expressions of love, I remembered back to our earlier time on the mountain. I recalled the warm sunshine, the cottony clouds, and the joy and mystery of those moments when the small, sacred window of sunshine had opened just long enough to gift Polly and Chris time for their ceremony, pictures, brief lingering, and then closed, their embrace by the universe in joyous celebration.

My heart filled with gratitude for the grace bestowed on the two and on all of us. Bless you always, dearest Polly and Chris.



About Mary Jo Doig

At the turn of the millennium, I arrived at a cross-road that brought me to a splendid, if unforeseen place, almost as if I were a traveler on Robert Frost's The Road Less Traveled. I was single again, my three children were grown and building their lives, I'd experienced a health issue and was working on an improved lifestyle. I also ached to do two other things: (1) change my long human services career in upstate New York's Catskill Mountains, where winter seemed to be at least seven months out of every year, and (2) move to a warmer place in the universe. My decision: did I want to continue on the path I'd been following pretty much all my life, or could I gather my then-fragile courage and start life brand new somewhere else? These were scary thoughts for a single woman in her late 50s. Five hundred miles away, though, I fell in love with a new mountain range, Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains, where I knew not a soul except my daughter who was attending college in the Shenandoah Valley, and I moved. I rented a tiny cabin on a mountain in the woods and lived there in solitude for two years, working in a new career by day and, when home, communing with the incredible natural beauty that surrounded me. There I also began to write my life stories, which were aching for release. I joined the Story Circle Network in early 2001, a rich place in cyberspace for women life writers, where I strengthened my written voice and began sharing my stories. I found so many opportunities to grow: 10 year facilitator for an online writing circle of women writers across the country; thirteen year editor of the "True Words from Real Women" section of the quarterly Journal; a reader and reviewer of women's memoirs for the SCN Book Review site; program chair for two Stories from the Heart national conferences in Austin, T. Presently I'm teaching Women's Life-Writing and Older Women's Legacy workshops in my part of the world in Central Virginia and facilitating the ongoing Circle of Memories Writing Circle (formerly an OWL workshop that continued on) at the Crozet Public Library. I am blessed with three wonderful children, a son and two daughters; a small, huge-hearted family; dear friends; my beagle Addie and cat Button. My hobbies include reading, writing, editing, cooking, gardening, quilting, knitting, biking, and simply being with the profound beauty of the mountains that embrace my small two acres in the Blue Ridge. The life stories I began writing in 2001 have grown deeper with time, re-writes, and personal growth. All these years later, I'm scheduled to publish my memoir, Stitching a Patchwork Life, in 2018.
This entry was posted in Family, Gifts, Grace, Gratitude, Mother Nature, Mystery, Simplicity. Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to The Wonder and Mystery of Marriage

  1. You captured the day so beautifully. Thank you for sharing these grace-filled moments with us. I wish Polly and Chris well on their journey.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That gave me goose bumps.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Elaine Ercolano says:

    How beautiful! Congratulation and much happiness to Polly and Chris.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Beautiful, Mary Jo. Best wishes to a lovely couple.


  5. Beautiful story beautifully delivered! What an amazing swirling of energies – not just the weather, but also the couple’s confidence – and I love your personal satisfaction between the lines. Best wishes for all!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Beautifully written, capturing each unique moment.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. susanwalbert says:

    What a beautiful celebration! I know they will cherish this lovely piece of writing, Mary Jo.


  8. Susan/s says:

    Ah, Mary Jo, you captured so well that sense of the universe participating with us in this magical existence. I’m happy to have been there vicariously, and so glad for Polly, Chris, you, and all the folks sharing in that lovely moment.


    • Mary Jo Doig says:

      How wonderful that you could join us on the mountain, Susan. Life has been so full of what I’ve always called “divine order” lately and I’m filled with gratitude. Thank you for visiting my blog!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s