thanks for replies. i've been a bit busy and slow to get back.
thank you blueberry eyes (someone called me this today)!
i think marriage is along the right lines. less marriage, but more perhaps the idea of union or non-dualism. in native culture a person wearing two braids indicates they are unmarried and one braid that they have married. my braid was just one and i think it meant just this being a bit tangled up about the idea of union.