Ever since we were little kids, growing up in this Hindu family we live in, my sister and I have asked about what our weddings will be like. Our parents were arranged, but they’re well aware (and approve) that we plan on finding our own matches. Still, my grandma, the traditional Indian woman she is, often asks, “Will you let me pick a good boy for you?” To which my sister replies, “Of course!”, being the perfect little angel she isn’t.
We’ve always asked if our weddings would be Hindu or corresponding with the faith of our husbands. We’d heard about some Hindus kind of conglomerating the two religions in holy matrimony, and our parents have always told us that we can choose any type of wedding when the time comes.
Tonight, my family seated around my aunt and uncle’s family room couch swiping through photos from my cousin’s mixed wedding, I came to a huge-slap-in-the-face realization: My wedding will not even potentially be Hindu. I will not have the option to pick if I want to wear a white gown or a thick sari, I won’t walk around a fire seven times with my partner, I won’t be decorated in jewels, bindis and henna on my big day.
Okay sure, I can incorporate any of these smaller things (like jewels and henna) no matter what wedding I choose to have, but there is no chance that it will even be mixed with a Hindu ceremony. The culture is so traditional and — dare I say — judgmental, that two women swearing their lives to each other would surely be unwelcome.
I have never been very religious. So this does not come as internally-conflicting news in any way. But it is pretty disappointing and somewhat shocking that this idea of a mixed ceremony that I’ve thought about since I can remember really isn’t going to turn out that way. My sister will get it. But I’ve been stripped of something I never had, but something I thought I would.