Saturday, January 7, 2012

Wedding (un-wedding) Top Ten

You knew I would have to do this eventually:

10. That the Toronto City Hall wedding chambers are surprisingly nice inside--their website makes it look like a church
basement, but there is an aisle, a bright white background with small flowers that you stand in front of to do the vows,
and a beautiful desk where you sign the registry. Our officiant's name was also Michael, and Mike's friend Michael stood up for him, so all the names on the certificate are Michael except me and my sister. Hilarious.

9. Cold cold day (in hell, as I'm sure most of my people thought that would be what it would take to get me down the aisle...) but it was a bright day. A blue day. No slush, no snow, no storm, no wet. So...I'll take the cold. :)

8. No need to pick songs for a father-daughter dance. This might need to be closer to number one, just in the fact it saved my emotional well-being for the day. Read on for the other thing that did.

7. My nephew, arriving to have dinner at my condo with my sister and her family, clomping up the stairs with his trademark bag of toy cars in a case, saying to me, "Heard ya got married!". My sister and I falling over each other with laughter. I said to River
"You know I got married--you were there, remember? The whole ring thing?" Him: "Yep". I'm putting this in line with running family jokes.

6. The Surprises: Two of my best friends popping over to witness this marriage business for themselves, despite having to organize childcare, and despite the time of grief that one of my best friends is currently experiencing in her life.

5. That I made it through the vows without crying (my cheek was 'tic-ing' Mike told me later) and I didn't skip over any words. I was calm, and I said them in a loud, clear voice. And I meant every single word.

4. That Mike's family--his Mom, his Dad (who had just had back surgery), his sister, and his nephew made the eleven-hour drive to be here. His sister came with my sister and I to get our nails done, while she got a haircut, and we had time for introductions and girl-talk. Then, after the ceremony, Mike's sister basically took over my kitchen and made dinner for all of us, including my Mom, sister, and her kids, and some other members of MIke's extended family, who also attended. She also cleaned my bathroom while I went to get my hair done and moved around every item in the apartment to tidy up, but I did eventually find everything.
My mother surprised me with a chocolate cake, and my sister surprised me with a bouquet of roses.
Amazing gifts, better than anything on a registry.

3. No stress in any planning, no decisions to make about things I can't bring myself to care about like favours, cakes, not offending anyone by having to leave them off a guest list, no tastings, no looking at venues.
When I realized the City Hall room did have an aisle, so a bride could be 'given away' I had a flutter of momentary panic and sadness--I thought I had managed to circumvent the whole aisle-father-daughter thing. The officiant and the helper said I could walk down the aisle on my own. In the end, Mike and i walked down it together. Problem solved.

2. Having my niece and nephew be apart of the ceremony--my niece held my flowers and River handed the rings to us. The picture of River standing up there with the rings. Later, all three kids, my niece, nephew and Mike's nephew scattered rose petals in the hallway of my condo, shrieking with happiness.

1. I want a marriage, not a wedding, and I think that the day and all that it (didn't) entail demonstrated that. So glad I did it 'my way'.

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