‘There he is,’ Dad says.
‘There. The guy in the kilt, waitin’ for you.’
For awhile, I couldn’t see him. And then he was all I saw.
Somehow, we made it down the aisle. And Daddy’s poking me in the shoulder. ‘Flowers,’ he says.
‘Give Jess your flowers.’
‘Oh, yeah. HERE!’ At which point I might have given my Maid of Awesome a giant paper-cut. In the face. Because, y’know, my flowers were paper.
And I’m going up the ramp to the stage. ‘You OK?’ I ask Dad.
‘Oh, aye,’ he says.
I flashback to other ramps and other stages. I’ve come a long way from Third Muchkin on The Left. Thanks for the lift, Daddy.
The look on Neil’s face is one I’ve never seen before. Really. I don’t know whether to kiss him or tackle hug him. So I touch him. On the knee. He has really nice knees.
There’s tape on the stage and I park on it. And the officiant is saying ‘Who gives this woman?’ And I’m like, what woman? And Dad’s hugging me, I hope I told him I love him. Because I do.
Neil looks terrified. But beautiful.
‘You’re gorgeous,’ he says.
‘So are you.’
We’re whispering. I hope.
And the officiant is talking and I’m listening. I hope. I hope. I know.
And then Neil lights a Yankee candle. I hope. I hope. I know. And then our mothers light one each. When we light the one in the middle, I hope I’m not shaking enough to burn the place down.
And then Jess reads Date A Girl Who Reads. We added ‘…and then marry her.’ And I’m trying not to laugh.
I talk to Neil with my eyes. My eyes say: Dude, why are you staring at me?
Because we’re getting married RIGHT NOW.
So we are. Holy shit.
And then I’m looking at his hands. Because Maud, our awesome officiant, is talking about them. And they are very nice hands. I greatly esteem them.
Neil talks to me. With his eyes. And his mouth. His voice cracks on ‘Mother of my children’, and I pray for the people that live in my heart.
And then Isaymynamereallyfast. And remember to breathe. I hope. I’m talking to Neil.
And hoping I don’t drop his ring. And it’s on. Because I say so. No, really.
And Maud says, ‘Make it so.’
And then we kiss. Like two eight-year-olds in front of our parents. Because that’s kindasortamaybe what it felt like.
And then we hug. After I figured out my husband wasn’t actually going to fall over. Best hug ever.
We sign a piece of paper while Bright Eyes sings First Day of My Life. I went out in the rain, suddenly everything changed…
It did rain on our first date. And everything did change.
It didn’t rain on our wedding day, though.
After we were piped out by the wonderful Pickled Piper, we left the building. To have photos taken, apparently. With the wedding crew. And a bunch of strangers. It seems I spent my first married moments among strangers.
My thoughts went like this: Who THE SHIT are all these people? Can we go back to our party? I hate tourists. Where’s my Dad?
And so, I asked Neil. ‘Who THE SHIT are all these people? Did we just leave our own wedding? Our friends who traveled far and around the corner to see us? I want to see them. I’m really pissed off. I don’t want to be angry at our wedding. But I’d like to go to our wedding. Can we go back? Who has my drink?’ Yes, I said all that. Ask my husband.
And then we went back. To take photos with family. Somewhere, I lost track of what my face was doing. Or my neck. Or my chin. I hope I don’t look crazed/hungry. I do believe we missed cocktail hour.
Neil and I take a minute by the lift. Then we’re waiting to be announced and piped into the reception. Where did the time go?
I hope I’m smiling at people on the way to our table, where there’s some whisky we’re meant to toast the piper with.
I’m all like, ‘OOOH, drink!’ And I down it.
‘You’ve never done that,’ Dad says.
‘I got married today, Pops. First time for everything.’
We needed to do the toast twice, because I drank so fast the first time. Yes, really.
Then there’s the Bride’s Cog. I stick my face in it. And then I make one. Not just for the camera.
I actually eat my dinner. Which is called breakfast.
I’m obsessed with my husband’s left hand. Because it has my ring on it. Fancy that.
(Photo taken by our friend Dan, who was taking photos of the official photos. Except the ones he’s in. Dan took all the photos I’ve used in the wedding series, so far.)