The Most Popular Month for Weddings

September is one of the most popular months for weddings. I’m about to get my hair and makeup done with the other bridesmaids when I get the email notifying me that you killed yourself.

I swallow my feelings and compartmentalize. What choice do I have? It is my sister’s wedding. I am overflowing with joy and happiness, and simultaneously, I am completely devastated. But I make my face reflect the happiness of the surroundings and not my tumultuous emotions. Besides, I am happy.

Our mutual friends are very understanding when I say I can’t send the email notice to the congregation or attend the funeral, which is scheduled for later today in accordance with Jewish custom to hold the funeral as soon as possible. “It’s a mitzvah (commandment) to go to a wedding over a funeral,” one friend says. “It’s what she would have wanted.”

September wedding:

I dance. You have killed yourself.

Who knows what you’d want?

From The Sunday Muse


Quick recap (that doesn’t do justice) of an event that happened over three years ago for dVerse, Poets and Storytellers United, and The Sunday Muse. For the full story, read the six-part series I wrote last year: Part 1Part 2Part 3Part 4Part 5, Part 6.

September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.


  1. I love your recap (not to diminish its sadness; I think I love its authenticity) – and I also went back and read the whole story.
    I don’t have any photos of the two friends of mine who suicided at different times. But I have very vivid images of each of them in my mind, even decades later.
    Would you believe, I just started writing a series of poems and bits of prose to one of those friends, with the overall working title ‘Letters to a Dead Man’.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you, and thank you also for going back and reading the whole story. The original 6 part letter took a good two years before I could articulate any of it.

      I’m sorry about the loss of your friends to suicide. I think the letter format makes a lot of sense – all the prose and poetry that you want to say directly to that person. I hope your “Letters to a Dead Man” project brings you peace

      Liked by 1 person

    • I agree with you. I think this friend genuinely meant well and was trying to make me feel better about missing the funeral. And from a Jewish law perspective, I believe he was correct about doing a mitzvah. But the “it’s what she would have wanted” language just didn’t sit well with me


    • Yeah I thought it was weird too. I get that the friend was telling me it was a mitzvah to be at a wedding in order to make me feel better (which, idk if it really did) but even if that hadn’t been the case, and even if we somehow knew that actually, my deceased friend would have wanted everyone to move heaven and earth to attend the funeral, it’s not like I could have or would have left my sibling’s wedding

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s sad how your sister’s anniversary will always coincide with the date of your friend’s death, always bringing up the question of whether you did the right thing or not. I’m torn on whether it’s acceptable or rude to say “it’s what they would have wanted.” I have used the phrase myself when there was someone I knew who refused to do anything or go anywhere they liked because a loved one had passed, and I said that they would not want to see you rotting away. On the other hand, with events and arrangements, how can we actually know what someone wanted?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I resolved the shared date aspect for myself by making the date that I focus on my friend’s memory her birthday instead so it’s not the same. Oddly, my grandfather died on my Jewish calendar birthday some years ago, actually, so while there’s a religious imperative for my mom to say certain prayers on the anniversary of his death, I personally prefer to use his birthday as the day to really focus on his memory. And I don’t think of it in a super sad way on their birthday, just more reflective. I feel like I’m not articulating this well.

      I think with the “it’s what they would have wanted’, so much of this is context – it all depends on what the relationship is and what the “want” is and so on. It didn’t sit right with me in this instance, but I could see where it could be comforting to someone else in a different context.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Interesting custom when The Preacher said “It is better to go to the house of mourning than to the house of feasting”…

    My (Christian) family would say that sisters come ahead of friends, though.

    What a grotesque situation!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I just saw something weird on this page, as well. I put in my e-mail and WordPress filled in a different name and web site. Is Dorahak someone you know, such that WP fills in her information, or is a hacking going on? If anybody gets messages that refer back to Dorahak, they did not come from me.

    Liked by 1 person

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 )

Facebook photo

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

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.