Dancing In The Rain

8 Aug

Many of my most significant life events have happened in the rain.

I came to this realization on a particularly stormy bike ride yesterday. I was trekking up a steep hill, wind and rain hammering my face, clothes clinging to my soaked skin. I was consumed by a mix of panic and hastiness that rain provokes. And then I remembered that just over 2 months ago I got married in the rain. And not just rain- black clouds, vicious lightning, and clapping thunder. In a long white dress. Suddenly, feelings of true joy washed over me as I pedaled up that hill. My drenched ride became playful, laughable, and… enjoyable. I felt more alive, more plugged in to the moment.

Why do we allow a little rain to shift our perspective so much? In life, it rains. Not only does it rain, but it storms, hails, tornadoes, tsunamis… Think of all the joyful moments you might be missing because you choose to cry along with the rain instead of dance in it?

It rained the day James proposed to me…

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It rained the day we got married…

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It rained the day I graduated college…

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It rained the last time we moved…

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It rained the day I ran my first marathon…

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It rained the first time I summited a mountain…

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I handle life’s rainstorms pretty well. I credit this to my belief that we are the masters of our own experience. We get to choose how we experience and remember each precious moment. I was surprised by the number of people who complimented me on my calm and happy demeanor the day 100 of our nearest and dearest gathered under a gazebo during a downpour, soaked and soggy, to watch me and JWD honor our love. To me, it was an easy choice to take it in stride. I didn’t see a rainy day, I saw a day on which my heart was overflowing with love and gratitude for JWD, our families, and our friends.

I think rain is good for us. It teaches us that perfection is highly overrated and is, in fact, something to reject rather than strive for. It teaches us that the imperfections are what make life exciting, make us feel truly alive, and connect us with each other. It conditions us to stop sweating the small stuff and to stop waiting for the sunny days to smile. 

A positive outlook is not just good for your soul, it’s good for your health too. One study found that hospital patients with a positive outlook were 58% more likely to live longer than their glass-half-empty counterparts. Aside from longevity, positivity is also linked to better heart health, strong immune systems, and less stress. Those who are positive tend to be exercisers, which is also proven to boost mood, health, and lower stress.

As everyone filed out of the gazebo after our wedding ceremony into the then sun-drenched park, one of our friends said the most incredible thing to me. He said, “There’s no such thing as bad weather, just soft people.” So dig deep and create your own sunshine. It’s not always easy, but it gets easier the more you practice.
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We’ve all been rained on (both literally and figuratively). Do you cry or do you dance?

 A song from our wedding day…

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One Response to “Dancing In The Rain”

  1. Mom August 9, 2014 at 1:09 pm #

    Love, love, love this post! So inspirational. I am a very proud Mama!!

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