I guess that's what you get..."
We woke up Saturday morning with a relatively calm air around the house, I wouldn't have even thought that in a mere five hours we would be surrounded by our dearest family and friends there to witness our exchange of vows. But looking outside at the 40 white chairs lined perfectly into two sections, and five tables dressed in turquoise linens and flowers it was hard not to feel the meaning of the day dancing around me, making my head spin.
I had finished my vows right before midnight the night before (I had written them about a week prior but a snafu with our Cox internet connection prevented me from emailing them to myself to print out at Greg's parents house). I had everything ready. I was ready.
I took a shower and before long realized people would be showing up in about an hour. Time was tapping me on the shoulder, taunting me. I tried my best to hurry, before- DING DONG!
My mom, aunt, mom's boyfriend and his parents, and my cousins were all filing into the house and heading for my door. I'm not ready. Not by a longshot. I don't like my hair. I don't like my make-up, should I start all over again? Yes. No. No time. Make it work.
Luckily a had a few extra hands to help me, but all the hands in the world wouldn't have been able to catch my brain which was racing along with my nerves. It was all so calm three hours ago. What the hell happened? Quick, I need something to drink!
I quickly learned that one can catch a decent buzz off of two glasses of champagne when they haven't eaten so much as molecules in the air all day. I also learned that while it takes some nerves away, makes it easier to pose for pictures, make small talk, and apply liquid eyeliner, it still doesn't have an effect on the ones that really know what's going on. The ones that realize just how real it all is, right now.
I greet family and watch them fight back tears (of the happy variety), and I greet my father who I knew would walk me down the aisle, yet had never actually visualized it. Now I must live it, and the emotions are too great. I fight back tears.
It quickly becomes time to start the show. I wait in the wings with my dad and my aunt who is also our photographer for the event. We compose ourselves and get ready to take the stroll, and all of a sudden a ball in my throat forms and I stop. I run to the bathroom and kneel in front of the porceline bowl thinking "oh my god, I'm going to throw-up. I'm going to throw-up right before my wedding and..." and nothing. Just dry heaving. Just my body trying to expel all of the frenetic energy in its bones. My aunt tells me to breathe, and I try. But I don't have time.
I take a swig of water and tell my dad and aunt "let's do this."
The music picks up, and my feet carry my body. I try to look at my guests and smile, but I know if I do I'll cry. So I look somewhere just above my feet. Once we reach the trellace, I hug my dad and kiss him on the cheek. I look at Greg and try not to cry.
The music stops and his dad starts the ceremony. I look at my son dressed in his blazer in the front row and clutching his two "security fish" (these two little plastic fish he's recently developed an affinity for), clearly ready to get this thing over with. I find comfort and want to laugh. I feel ya, buddy. This is all so big.
There are some tears, and some vows, and there are a couple more tears, though not nearly as many as I had anticipated. And then it's my turn.
I have learned a lot these last three years. I've learned that something as small as a "hello" from a stranger on the internet can change a life, turn two people into a couple.
I've learned that moving in with someone you adore will turn you into a couple of parents, and for the first time 1+1=3.
I've learned that laughing through it all will get you through a whole hell of a lot, and if that doesn't work you can always walk it off
Thank you for laughing with me
I've learned a lot about the human heart. It can palpitate faster when the person you love smiles at you from across the room.
It can stop beating completely when you see the word "pregnant" in front of your baffled face.
It can swell when the almost overwhelming joy of just realizing you became a family fills the house.
Thank you for Jack.
More than anything, I've learned how to truly love- whole-heartedly, honestly and faithfully.
Thank you for loving me.
I promise to keep loving you. Perhaps more of more is possible.
I promise to remain honest and faithful to you and our family
I promis to be the best person I can be for us.
And I'm sure I'll continue learning, as long as we can do it together.
And soon, it's over. Rings are placed and lips are kissed. And suddenly we're married.
The evening commences with enchiladas and music. Margaritas are sipped without reservation. And I feel it all. I grab Greg's hand under the dinner table and squeeze.
"Remember how we felt when we brought Jack home for the first time," I ask, tears again welling.
"Well, I feel like that all over again. Only greater, since he's already here. THIS, this right here, right now, is what heaven is."