Posted by: Lotus Light | April 4, 2010

Balloons and relationships

Chinese weddings are enormous fun – especially for the
guests.  The bride and groom are usually too busy walking round to each
table to toast each and every person there to eat or have time to do any real
chatting to friends or family.  Generally the guests don’t dress up –
just come in everyday clothes.  Only the bride and groom get really
dressed up.  The groom is in a suit, and the bride can change 2
or 3 times during the couple of hours the wedding party is being held. 
She usually starts off in a white western style wedding dress, then after the
more formal part of the ceremony is over, she will change into a traditional
red qipao for all of the toasting.  Some brides will change again into
another dress for a further extension of the party back at their home. The guest chat to others at their table, eat and drink and watch the happenings.  Once the meal is finished we all pack up and go home.  The wedding is usually over in a couple of hours.  Bride and groom will head back to their place with friends and either sleep or continue the party.

No matter how many changes the bride makes though, the joy on the faces of the wedding couple
is lovely to see.

This particular wedding had a ‘wall’ of balloons behind the stage where they
did the formal parts of the ceremony – showing their family and friends the
official papers which they had signed a couple of months ago, that showed they
were officially married; bowing to each other and their parents.  The
balloons were shades of pink, yellow, purple and blue, with lights from outside the venue and
from the ceiling shining through them.  They cast a lovely soft light over
the stage and the young couple.

The fragility of these light-filled balloons made me question how strong our links to the world and other
people are.  We look with love into the eyes of those we choose to
partner, but how long will that love last?  Will strong winds blow it
away, will sharp points burst it?  Will time gently deflate the balloon of
love we surround ourselves with? If the balloon is so strong that it cannot be penetrated, is it also so strong that it does not allow each person in the relationship to grow? Does it become a brightly coloured prison instead? 

We need to find a balloon material that allows the light and air in to shine on us, is resistant to the winds, sharp ends, and gradual deflation, but is able to expand to meet the changing needs of each person and perhaps to accommodate a growing family.  Without these properties, the balloons that surround us and look so bright and promising will soon disappear.


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