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Listing Holidays and Goals

Bryan and I have a couple of new tasks to take on this week, after our latest pre-marital counseling sessions with Rabbi Charlie and Reverend Bassford.

When we next meet with Rabbi, we’re supposed to have come up with some goals – personal goals, goals as a couple, and goals for our family. We’re actually supposed to each have our own sets of goals and work on them separately., Then, when we talk with Rabbi next time, we can talk about how we can really help take charge of those goals and see them through. This will actually be our last session of the “programmed” counseling with Rabbi, though we’ve talked about doing an extra session to focus on interfaith topics. I’ll speak only for myself in this post (though I think Bryan will agree with me) that these sessions have been incredible. They’ve given us lots of tools that will help us throughout our marriage. And, it’s been such an enjoyable process…and spending time with Rabbi is always enjoyable.

For our next session with Reverend Bassford, we’re each supposed to list the religious holidays that are the most important to us, so that we can talk about them together and find ways to make sure that those holidays continue to be treated the way we want them to be as we build our interfaith home. I think this is to make sure that we are aware of which holidays are the most important to the other, and why.

I’ve been doing some thinking…being Christian, the obvious religious holiday for me that’s the biggest is Christmas…and Christmas is BIG in my family. We do it all–the decorations, the tree, the PRESENTS, the family time, the music, Christmas Eve church services–the whole shebang. Bryan has seen the spectacle that is a Guess family Christmas, and it didn’t scare him off (so far), but there will be things that we’ll need to discuss regarding how Christmas will be handled in our house, especially when it comes to children – both his from his previous marriage, and any that we have together.

I’ll be interested to see what Bryan’s holiday list is. We talk a lot about our different faiths–how they’re similar, where they differ, and why we believe what we do (in fact, they’re some of the most stimulating religious conversations I’ve ever had in my life)–but I’m not sure we’ve ever sat down and listed out the religious holidays and traditions that are the most important to us. I think this will be a real opportunity for growth for us. I’ll follow up with a post about anything interesting that comes out of this session.

Julie Daneman