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select a month a year of stories - the big day - by rebecca eisenberg

I was making a very anti-Emma Goldman-like move. What would she think? How would she view me?

"I'm independent!" I cheered as I marked the date, time and place in my Palm Pilot.

"I'm feminist," I insisted, and booked the flight and hotel reservations using my tens of thousands of frequent flyer points.

"I am egalitarian!" I asserted, as I picked out a three-piece suit for myself and my fiancé at the same designer boutique.

"I am socially-conscious!" I mused, as I placed our reservations for scuba diving with dolphins and whales at the marine mammal preserve.

"I strictly oppose government regulation of family structure!" I declared, as I licked stamps and mailed envelopes.

"I am modern!" I averred, as I carefully constructed a 10-page guide to weekend activities in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

"I am strong!" I bellowed, as I packed my bags and boarded the plane, ticket in one hand, cute fiancé's hand in the other.

"I am a career-woman!" I sang, as I dressed, preened, photoed and came down the stairs to meet my groom.

"I am happy," I finally realized, as I stared straight at my husband and uttered my vows.

Only then did I realize, as I looked around the room, that no one needed to be reminded that I was any of those things.

After decades of swearing that I would never get married, of writing numerous lengthy articles about why marriage is an outdated, misogynistic institution – one which even had to be published in two parts – and of being so sure that I knew what was best for myself and for the world, I did the unexpected: I changed my mind. And isn't that the prerogative of any independent, feminist, egalitarian, socially-conscious, anti-government-regulation-of-family-structure, modern and strong woman of the 21st century?

Emma Goldman be damned, it felt great. I was in love. I still am.

And that is why April 8, 2001, is a lot more than just the day that I got married. It's also the day I started allowing myself to enjoy my life.

It's all a rationalization, of course, and maybe some denial. Maybe we will call our first daughter Emma. I hope for her only that she, too, knows love, and allows herself to enjoy it, in any way she pleases.

How was your April?