A Perfect Day
An eventful day. My baby sister fainted during the ceremony. Twice. The PA wouldn't work. And I'm pretty sure the waitstaff stole some of our wedding gifts.
If it hadn't been my sister, a bridesmaid fainting probably would've been funny. But it was my sister, Melissa, who I've always thought of as a daughter as much as I do a sister, with the 12-year difference between us. This is especially true now that we are older and our parents dead. It was really hot in the church. I was sweating rivers down my back. Everyone says she probably just locked up her knees, lost circulation, got dizzy and went down. Which like I said could've provided some much needed comic relief in the midst of heavy arias and Olde English. Except that it wasn't. And when Justine finally shook me out of my shell-shock and told me to help my sister, the first thing Melissa said was, "I don't know what's happening to me." And all I could think of was how young my mother had been when she found out she was sick, and that I wasn't going to lose my sister, too.
Which put a bit of a damper on the ceremony. My sister turned out to be fine. But, fuck, man, that scared the shit out of me. You can see the before and after pictures. In the ones before, I got this big ol' goofy grin plastered on my grill, standing up there with the priest and my lovely wife-to-be. And then in the next ones after the fall, I look...well, like I usually do.
(Thankfully, my sister was way more graceful than this...)
It's a bit of a conundrum, my relationship with the spotlight. In one respect, I freely admit to loving being the center of attention. Having everyone show up on a day just for you, what's not to like, right?But not, like, literally, with everyone's watching you and trying not to screw up. Standing on the altar, I began getting extremely self-conscience, and the ceremony seemed to drag, time slowing and all that. A watched pot, y'know? Plus, I was worried as hell about my sister. And then there was the PA, which kept crackling and feeding back, like Spinal Tap playing "Sex Farm" in an airport hanger...
When the priest finally dismissed us, my undershirt was soaked, my ears were ringing, and I felt like I'd just gone the distance with Apollo Creed (that's right, I just mixed movie metaphors).
Of course, this is all under the microscope of personal introspection, which can distort and needlessly magnify, and the day was turning into a real bummer. Then I started...dancing. And I started to get it.
Nothing else mattered, not little hiccups or an overly hot church. I was married to the mother of my son, Justine, my best friend and the only person whose company doesn't eventually bug the shit out of me. She looked spectacular, and I was one lucky mutherfucker. We got our house in the hills and our terrific kid, and I do what I love every day. And if I can keep on the righteous path, this just might stick...
I don't know if there are storybook weddings. Maybe there are. My last wedding went off without a hitch. Aside from a few raindrops, the day I married April couldn't have gone more swimmingly. And that sham of a marriage lasted less than half a year. So maybe few wrinkles this time will bode something better, something permanent. Which is all I want, a family.
In the end, the day ended up being what the day was supposed to be about. Without going all Hallmark, friends and family saw me and my wife pledge our lives to one another with God's blessing. At least I hope it was a blessing. The PA that kept squawking couldn't help but make me think of this scene from The Man with Two Brains...