I believe that weddings bring out the best and the worst in people. The perfect, extravagant wedding often leaves the most bitter taste because we get so worked up in the details that we forget what really matters. More on that to come. Trust me, you're in for a ride.
It is in the simple affairs that the true meaning of the event comes out. Chris' grandfather died last week and we spent five days in Boston. Bumpy was a vivacious 82 year old. A die hard karaoke fan until the day he died. He was Irish and created a big Irish family. Us Irish folks know what to do in death... celebrate life! The term "memorial reception" doesn't quite describe what happened after this man's funeral. I would call it the "After Party".
I walked into the American Legion. It smelled slightly stinky... a bit like butt. There were round tables with paper tableclothes, trays of deli sandwiches, cookies, an open bar in another room where lots of people were drinking and smoking (at 12:00 in the afternoon on a Friday) and a cake with his Marine photo. There was a karaoke set up in one corner, the lights were dim (for romanticism?!) and I thought "What the hell is happening here?!".
But it wasn't these details that matter. It was the fact that his friends and family had gathered to celebrate the life of a karaoke legend. Chris' mother was tipsy and running all over the dance floor. There was a male karaoke friend with super long blonde hair that sang a rockin song called "Dirty White Boy" in which you scream "DIRTY WHITE BOY" at the top of your lungs for 3.5 minutes straight. There was also some hair whipping during the instrumental. There were lots of cowboy hats as Bumpy always had one and was thus called "The Wrangler". My favorite had a rattlesnake head and was covered in feathers.
Point is, I think we get so wrapped up in the details of our big life events that we forget what matters. It doesn't matter if my mother wears a veil to my wedding. It doesn't matter if the groomsmen's tuxes don't match. (well, maybe it does, but I'm not going to let it get to me now!). All that matters is that these people are with us to celebrate our new beginning.
I'm super-excited for the ridiculous mishaps, the disasters and the imperfections... because really, who wants to be perfect and unhappy?