Who Doesn’t Love a Wedding?

Everyone loves a wedding, be it formal or informal, weddings just hold promise in our hearts.

When I was little, weddings were something that forced me to wear a dress and actually act like a female for hours. That meant I wore my Easter Dress! Every year I got a new Easter Dress and that perfect dress had better have stayed that way! My mom obviously loved blue or loved me in blue. I had a lot of blue dresses.  Considering most weddings are in June, guess what I wore to the weddings?

But one year, I spotted a lavender dress and I fell in love! I wanted it! I must have driven Mom nuts because she actually bought it for me. It was nylon or something like that and I had to wear a crinoline under it. I promise that netting was the most uncomfortable stuff to sit on! But at six, I thought I was beautiful in it. I still love all those lavender/plum/amethyst  colors. I remember going into the city for a wedding wearing that dress. By the time I got there, my legs itched from the netting. By the time I got home, my little legs were almost raw from the crinoline. The whole day was being told I wasn’t allowed to do whatever.  I wanted to look at the cake. Other kids were. No! Other kids were on the dance floor, why couldn’t I dance? No, you will sit and behave yourself.  My father let me stand on his toes for a dance while he did his box step. Later I decided that by standing on his toes, he didn’t step on mine. I never wanted to go to a wedding again!

By ten, I’d changed my mind about weddings. A family friend’s daughter got married. She wore a pink suit and matching pillbox hat with a veil. Huh? She was a gentile and he was a Jew. Oh well, it was one heck of a party. There was a buffet and no one paid attention to what I ate. There was music and dancing, and no one said a word if I went near the cake. It was tiered and covered in some sort of spun sugar sheeting. I desperately wanted to touch it, but I knew not to do such a thing. It looked hard like the red candy that coats apples, except this was silvery pink. Everyone got a slice of cake that was cut from something else. Maybe that cake wasn’t real?

By eleven, I had a pink lace dress and I wore black high heels with little T-straps on them, My hair was piled high on my head in a generous bun and finished in a black bow. I wore my onyx, diamond, and pearl set.  (Teardrop earrings, necklace and bracelet.) The groom wore tails, the bride had a train a mile long or so it seemed, there were bridesmaids, junior bridesmaids, flower girls, and a ring bearer. It was the fairytale wedding! By now I was hooked! The wedding was in a cathedral with a huge pipe organ, and there were limos to take them to the reception. That was a sit-down dinner of prime rib. The waiter winked and poured wine for me, too. Then we went to the ballroom for dancing. My father asked me to slow dance with him. The box step, it was all he knew. But other young men asked me to dance. They’d ask where I went to school and I’d answer vaguely by giving the name of the school, but dropping the part that ended with Elementary School. I didn’t look my age.

At fourteen, my sister got married. She had a “small” wedding, about 350 people. That was the first time I was in a wedding. My dress was light green. I hated the color but it had a shimmery green lace that was see-through. It went from my covered bodice to my neck and down to my elbows, across my back and down below my waist. The design was beautiful. She had a matron of honor who wore pink and the rest of us wore that horrible green. Why did she choose day-glow leprechaun?To make matters worse, my hair was cut like a pixie! All I needed was the pointed ears to go with it!

I don’t think she liked the idea that I was taller, so she had us wear low heels – dyed to match. It was a June wedding and where we lived it should have been a pleasant 80F degree day. The air conditioner in the building did not work. I think we broke all temperature records that day. I was standing in the receiving line between my brother-in-law’s two friends: one was tall, very good-looking and single, and the other was married. Guess who passed out from the heat? Guess which one caught me? Yep, his married buddy!

They tossed rice in those days and someone must have tossed minute rice. My sister’s gown had a stand-up collar that scooped low in the front and back. It was a big rice catcher! It funneled rice into her cleavage, down to her tummy, and even made its way into her panties that were sewn into the gown. I remember her standing in the tub, crying as my mom and I tried to remove the cooked rice from her sweat-soaked body so that she could get dressed for her honeymoon. My job was to be The-Voice-of-Reason and act like the adult in charge. I chased my mom and told my sister to turn the darn water on and take a fricking shower! I handed her a shower cap and a washcloth! She was headed for her honeymoon and no one does that after sweating like a pig all day!

After that insanity, I never wanted the big wedding or even a small one. My husband and I attempted to have a small one. Considering my father refused to speak to me for marrying George, Dad obviously wasn’t going to give me away, so I asked my one brother to do the honors. George and I wanted a quiet little wedding in the Catholic Church. The plan was for it to be my mom, his mom and dad, his brother, (his sis was overseas with her military hubby), my best friend, that wonderful great aunt of mine, and my brother.

Oops! My sister wasn’t going to miss my wedding, so she came up from Virginia to attend with her son who was seven months old. My aunt’s husband died the weekend before and my mom didn’t want to leave her little sister alone so that meant my aunt was coming. And if my great aunt came then her daughter and husband had to bring her. Then my one neighbor found out about the wedding and she wanted to come. And if you invite the one neighbor, you have to invite the other which meant that young friend came and if she came, I had to invite my other friend because I couldn’t leave her out. Then my future in-laws  decided that we had to invite her aunt and his brother and her sister. and who knows who else. His sister returned home unexpectedly with her toddler a few days before the wedding. What should have been about eight of us expanded into about forty people.

Since I didn’t want the fancy bridal dress, just something street length, I searched and searched. If it was white, it looked a little too flouncy as if made for a hayride or it looked like it was leftover from summer. It was November. I found something in an ivory color that was decorated in gold and silver threads. It was beautiful and expensive. I bought it. That was the last time I ever bought any dress that expensive. I later discovered that dress cost more than what my husband made in a year!

The wedding was lovely. And when we got to the point where the priest was supposed to say that George could kiss the bride, the priest decided he wanted to give us his own special little blessing because he had such faith in us. When he was done, he turned us and kinda pushed us down the aisle. George looked at me and asked about the kiss. Well, before he got to kiss me, his uncle grabbed me and kissed me.

This large French Canadian family has to double kiss! Finally George spoke up and grabbed me, then everyone cheered. We had a lovely reception at my mom’s house and George and I quietly slipped away hoping to have a pleasant romantic night. That’s when George informed me that we were expected at his parents’ house for another reception! What???

From then on it went downhill. I’ll leave it with his sister and his cousin’s wife thought it would be fun to get me drunk. When that didn’t happen, they put something in my drink. I’ve never been that sick in my life. George even admitted he thought about taking me to the Emergency Room. He should have!

Not only did I marry a blue-collar guy from the wrong side of the tracks, I managed to marry into a family that was probably crazier than my own! It’s a good thing I loved him because anyone else would have filed for divorce on Monday morning.

I want to hear about your wedding memories!

 

Lemons

This is Leigh’s beautiful cover for her book that will be part of Weddings on Main Street by the Authors of Main Street. Lemons and Shamrocks for a wedding? I can’t wait to read this one!

 

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9 Responses to Who Doesn’t Love a Wedding?

  1. Shirley Wine says:

    E.
    What a charming story. No wonder you write such great books.

    Like

  2. I write romance but I never thought I’d get married at all. But I will in 22 days actually and I’m absolutely excited and happy. Awesome post on weddings.

    Like

    • E. Ayers says:

      Congratulations! Wishing you all the best! What’s the saying about the best things come to those who wait? I’m hoping this is the best for you. Maybe you’ll come back and tell us all about your wedding. We’d love to hear about it!

      Like

  3. Jane Leopold Quinn says:

    I loved your wedding story, E. I had two weddings – 2 different guys. The first one was the white dress that had been my mother’s. I squeezed into it with the help of a high-waisted girdle and it was everything I wanted in a wedding except the groom. While I was getting dressed at the church, I fantasized about running back home with the train trailing in the air. I shook so hard going down the aisle that my dad noticed. 3-1/2 years later I was telling my folks we were getting a divorce and my dad said they kind of knew it wouldn’t last. Gee, I wonder if anyone had told me that before hand.. But if I hadn’t gone through with that and moved to Chicago, I wouldn’t have had the amazing life I’ve had. Lots of mistakes and pain and good things along the way, but if I hadn’t married the first guy, I never would have met the second guy 14 years later. Long road to him, that’s for sure. That second wedding was small and sure, just perfect for both of us and 25 years later, we’re still here. That’s MY story. 😉

    Like

    • E. Ayers says:

      I can’t imagine you with anyone else. You two are so happy together, always there for the other, and still in love!

      And if someone had told you the first time, you wouldn’t have believed them, and you probably would have been quite angry with them. Went through that with one daughter. I was furious and afraid he’d hurt her. Well, he didn’t ever hit her that I know of, but he did walk through the door one day, about a year later, and tell her he didn’t love her, then he told her to get out. Sweet guy, huh?

      She swears she’ll never marry again. But she is with a nice guy who treats her well and they are happy. They’ve been living together for almost seven years.

      Only in books do we get to pick the perfect mate for someone.
      🙂

      Like

  4. Jan says:

    My first marriage lasted 9 months…well, a month after we got married, I tore up the certificate and threw it in his face. My second marriage, we got married in Las Vegas, on our way home from California to New Mexico. Our witnesses were my children, 2 year old Timmy and 9 day old Jennifer. I have no idea who the signatures belonged to on the certificate.

    Thirty-nine short years later… We celebrate on the 17th of June.

    James adopted my 2 children, and we had 3 more. It’s been a wonderful life.

    Like

    • E. Ayers says:

      Wow, Jan. I knew James was #2, but I think he’s really #1 when it come to husbands!

      My youngest daughter flew to Las Vegas for her second marriage. They had a blast! They put the airfare, hotel, and rental car on their CC and took $300 cash with them. When they returned, they turned in their chips towards their CC and paid everything off. They counted their cash and had $297. It cost them $3. (They haven’t been that lucky since. 🙂 ) They aren’t much for gambling, but they love the shows and all the other things there.

      Like

  5. susanrhughes says:

    I still love that story about the rice!

    Like

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