Friday, April 29, 2011

My Royal Wedding

Ok, I have to admit, I only watched about 5 minutes of the entire Royal Wedding television event of the 21st Century. My girls on the other hand watched longer. They questioned why Prince Philip is not King and how the whole monarchy thing works, and why we Americans care in the first place. None of which I understand either, maybe someone can enlighten us all. Anyhow, we were pleased to see that Kate looked just like any other woman on her special day. Beautiful!

It got me thinking about my own wedding 13 years ago this month. It had been planned for 14 months and had grown from a small, simple affair to a much bigger, longer, more expensive gathering. It would have been much easier to have eloped or gotten married in my parents back yard (where I wanted to). Being the only daughter, my mother wanted everything in my wedding that she didn't have in hers. She and Daddy were paying, I obliged on everything except the dress.

The last few weeks became very nerve wracking. My soon to be husband was on a deployment and cutting it too close for comfort on his arrival back home. But nonetheless he made it home just in time. Our very talented soloist delivered her child early and was still able to grace us with her beautiful voice. The church's new carpet, pew coverings and wall paint were finished the week before our ceremony, a little behind schedule, but done. I appreciated them wanting to have it done before our ceremony, but everyone was a little nervous it wouldn't be. The new electronic grand piano had been ordered to replace the old organ and was late on delivery, so I spent the day before the ceremony playing and recording all of the instrumental music to its computer memory. Papaw had been placed back in the hospital, and bless his heart, promised me he wouldn't die (like he had a choice) until after our wedding if I promised to reserve him a "missing man" position on the pew. I did and he didn't, the Lord took him home to be with Mamaw two days later.

The day of the wedding was pretty laid back thank goodness. We didn't follow most of the wedding etiquette that Ms. Post would recommend in her books. We took almost all the pictures beforehand including the ones of Mikie and I. We let people in the door as they arrived, some out of town guests arrived extremely early.  My piano students and the children from the church's children's ministry (where I was working at the time) were honorary bridesmaids and groomsmen. They wore their Easter outfits and sat on the front pew in front of the family, because all children love weddings and should be able to see what's going on up front. No one stood as I walked in or out, because we both had Grandmothers who were not physically able to stand without assistance at length and we wanted them to be able to see.

The maid of honor hurt her foot the week of the ceremony and so she hobbled down the aisle way. Daddy and I slowly walked down the aisle to where my mother and Nana were seated when I realized I had left their roses in the back window of the church. I stopped, turned around, motioned to the wedding director to bring them to me. At this point the flower girl was heading back down the aisle when she stopped and crawled in Mom's lap, so she handed her off to the wedding director when she brought the roses. After giving the roses to Mom and Nana, I took a step and heard this extremely loud, air being sucked out of the room gasp by the 300+ people in the Sanctuary. As I attempted to take another step I felt my dress pulling behind me and thought that the wedding party would be viewing something they didn't need to be seeing. I had managed to get my train caught on the bottom of the candle holder fastened to the pew. As I had stepped the candle holder had tipped and my quick on her toes cousin had managed to catch it before it hit the new, just installed the week before carpet, or my dress.

We made it to the alter, where the Pastor proceeded to preach a 15 minute sermon before Daddy gave me away, he asked me if I took Mikie as my lawfully wedded wife, Mikie plighted me his "trough," I got really nervous and Mikie had to hold my music book while I sang to him (but it kept him occupied), it lasted 45 minutes and we exited to the "Hallelujah Chorus." Mikie let out a big, redneck whoop on the front porch of the church as we went out and half of the Hell's Angel's Motorcycle group must have been passing by.

Yes, it was a wonderful, eventful, hard to forget wedding, that will never be seen on national television or talked about for decades to come, but it was my day of royalty and no one else mattered. Well ok, maybe Mikie did. And my children love to watch the replay with Mom and Dad and have vowed if they get married it won't be anything like ours.