Today I have the pleasure of inviting the rather delicious Louise from Thirty Something Bride to talk about what a wedding means to her. A few weeks ago she was kind enough to let me mutter on her own blog, thank you so. This piece was written when I was getting married. I loved it then and I still love it now. Thank you Louise. As always you are right on the money.
Right at this red-hot second, I’m feeling a bit…angry about weddings. Here’s why.
I have a guy friend who is marrying for the first time. He’s 40. She’s 22. There’s a Facebook picture of them together that makes me hate this twenty-nothing from the get-go and I’ve never even met her. In the photo they are standing together, all smiles. His beard is touched with the first signs of gray. Her skirt is so short I wonder how she even walks without showing off, um, HER beard. In the background to his right is a pretty blonde woman. My friend’s comment on his own picture? “Note the Cougar on the right.” His fiancé commented back with, “Note the KITTEN on the left.” Meaning, herself. This made me incredibly mad for some reason. Perhaps because I’m starting to consider myself Cougar age? Maybe, but it certainly rubbed me the wrong way. All of the pictures of them together show all smiles, fancy clothes, exotic locales and her amazing tits, her amazing legs and the fact that she is total arm candy.
Now my friend is no fool. He’s marrying for the first time at 40. I know the kinds of women he appreciates. He would not be marring a dummy. I do know she’s a violinist. She speaks at least two languages. But honestly, she is so incredibly hot that I wonder if she’s simply a bimbo. Am I stereotyping? You betcha. Do I wish I had tits like hers? You betcha.
But I can’t help but wonder: does this young girl know what she’s getting herself into? Does she look beyond the fancy clothes, the trips, the wine tastings and her own youth? Does she understand what her life will look like in 20 years when she’s 42 and he’s 60? Does she realize that she too, will be a Cougar? Eventually? Do they talk about it or laugh it off as if there weren’t a care in the world? I worry for my friend. I wonder if he’s marrying her because he found his soul-matey or if she is just the loveliest ship with the billowiest sails. I have not seen him in years. Has he changed? Have I?
So I’m left here percolating with few facts, abstract Facebook comments and photos of my friend and his new fiancé. And I think it’s situations like these that leave me ruminating about weddings. I love weddings. I love looking at all weddings. I love wedding gowns and flowers. I love cute favors, fun hair toys, ooey-gooey romantic vows, families who come from near and far to help celebrate, I love it all. I love budget weddings and garden weddings. I love church weddings and restaurant weddings. I want to go to a Jewish wedding (I’ve never witnessed one) and a gay wedding that is recognized at both the state and federal level. I hope to plan a wedding other than my own (just for the fun of it). I want to go to Bridal Fashion Week in NYC.
But these are the things about weddings that I love. A wedding is a day. It’s a moment in time. For me, it was a string of wonderful moments that lasted nearly the entire day. Not all brides are as lucky as I was. Sometimes things go wrong. Sometimes those things seem more important than what the reality is at the end of the day. Which is: You’re Married. Whether you did it Platinum style or DIY style. At the end of the day, you will be married. Period.
Sometimes I think I put too much money, time, blood, sweat and tears into our wedding. Sometimes I think I didn’t do enough. Or I didn’t do it right. Or good enough. Or unique enough. Sometimes I think I did too much DIY. Some days, I think not enough. Should I have invited extended family? The good friends, not just the best friends? I question these things all the times and probably will as long as I continue to flood my world with weddings.
But what I know about weddings is this: you will be married. Married.
Thinking back to Thanksgiving. My husband and I spent it with extended family that had yet to meet him. The day went by so quickly – a crowd of us eating our dinners with plates balanced on our knees, glasses of wine perched on the corner of every table in the house. The majority of the people there were not at my wedding. Why? Because the family matriarch had started chemo the week before my wedding. Her immediate family members stayed near to her, as they should have, instead of coming to my wedding. The sadness of her absence then was well worth the price as she is in early remission and things look good.
The joy and thankfulness I felt sitting on the floor, eating dinner with my family – a family who welcomed my never-met husband into their home with open arms? That was the same joy I felt on my wedding day.
So I think about my friend and his hot-wife-to-be and I hope the hope of all hopes that family and love are what they are focused on. I hope that the wedding will not just be a big, fancy day with gorgeousness all about (thought I do wish them all they could hope for on that day). I hope that their wedding day will bleed into a lifetime of days, kinda like how ours has been so far.
So my final answer, Regis.
What does a wedding mean to me?
To me, it means family.