Rupali and Kiran Day 1
Rupali’s Parent’s house in Natrona Heights, Pa.
Rupali and Kiran met while they were both in medical school at the University of Chicago. If the rumors are true, Kiran became a TA just so he could get to know Rupali. No matter how it started out, the two of them are clearly very in love and had an amazing wedding. I’m really looking forward to sharing their story with you in my next few blogs.
Rupali started Friday off with Ganesh Puja, a prayer ceremony, at her parent’s home in Natrona Heights, Pa. All auspicious Hindu ceremonies begin with a prayer to the Lord Ganesh, requesting him to remove any obstacles that may arise during the ceremony. The Kumars transformed their small sunroom into a lovely spot for the entire family to gather and celebrate the start of the wedding.
The Kumars also invited Kiran’s family over for lunch and to perform his Upanayana, the sacred thread ceremony. This is a rite of passage for young men and one interpretation of the word nayana can be translated to mean ‘bringing the ultimate truth nearer in sight.’ The hallmark of the Upanayana ceremony is the wearing of the Yajnopaveetam, or sacred thread. This is part of Kiran’s preparation for marriage.
One of my favorite moments of the day was the Bride’s Haldi Tel Ceremony or blessing, cleansing and beautifying ceremony. Watching Rupali’s mother hold her scarf on Rupali’s head while her sisters, cousins and other married women in her family rubbed turmeric on her was very touching.
To round out the day, Rupali had her Mehendi or henna application done in the afternoon. This was another highlight of the day; the smell of burning coconut still lingered in the sunroom from earlier in the day and mixed in with the smell of henna was just wonderful. The married women in the family all reminisced about their weddings and how it became real to them when the henna was applied. The smiles on the faces of all the young girls while they listened to the stories was just precious.
Thanks for reading.