i have been to a few weddings in my lifetime, including my own. when i talk about the a&e wedding of saturday, feb 4, 2012, and use superlative terms, i mean NO disrespect to any of the other weddings i’ve attended, including my own.
that being said, i feasted last saturday like i’m not sure i ever have before.
let’s review my own marriage ceremony (called a sealing when performed in an lds temple, as mine was and as a&e’s was) for a moment. i was so excited i struggled to stifle giggles. i’m sure that if i had let the laughter out, people might have been under the impression that i wasn’t taking the whole thing very seriously at all. the bride and groom kneel during the ceremony and those present will confirm that my feet and ankles (is that possible, the ankles part?) were bouncing around like nobody’s business, as they say.
i couldn’t tell you what the sealer (that’s what the man performing the ceremony is called) said to us. i was just plain too excited to know. my recollection is that ben was grinning a lot, too. i couldn’t see his feet, but i’m confident they were still. we both got misty but no tears fell.
enough about me. back to the feast.
the sealing room was full of love, the air thick and sweet with it. we drank it in with each breath. it filled us. warmed our innards.
the sealer said a few words (think mini-sermon) before performing the ceremony proper. i cannot describe it. i’ve already told you about the love. well, add to that a palpable spirit. the Holy Spirit of God was in that room, i have no doubt, and with each word the sealer spoke, we were fed. we learned. he was the cutest and maybe smartest old man and weaved together the beginning and the end of our lives and of God’s plan for His children, tying everything back to the marriage of this man and this woman. from adam and eve partaking of the forbidden fruit and their realization that they would face hardship and sorrow but that they could also learn and grow from it to our interview at the judgment bar and how all of it relates back to this moment of coming together in marriage. i wishwishwish my husband could have been there. i wish everyone i love could have been there. i count it a special blessing that i was there. a&e’s day was a special day for all of us.
afterward, outside the temple and every time i saw him throughout the remainder of the day (we ran into the newlyweds, as i told you, a various of the photo spots, like the hotel del coronado), e was excited. the kind of excited i was on my wedding day. like he couldn’t handle the joy and was near bursting. whenever people were hugging and congratulating, he wanted to be hugging and congratulating. a great sight to see.
the reception was at the boathouse, which is just down from the hotel del coronado (people who know call it simply “the del”). food, folks, and fun.
the evening’s program included a video, produced and edited and directed by the bride’s younger and devoted sister. a music video starring the bride and groom. an interview with the bride and groom individually as they told their love story, complete with reenactments (in the outfit each wore during the original enactment) of key plot points. like when she said, “you confuse me, e russell,” but he heard, “you can kiss me, e russell.” ahh, the memories. at the end, a talked about her continuing disbelief that this was all happening. she said, “we’ll be at the reception watching this video and i’ll be sitting next to my now husband and i still won’t be able to believe that this joy is mine.” she has found in her husband a safe place for her soul, something i know personally that she has been seeking. what peace.
at some point (i should look at the program), there was toasting. guest after guest got up to gush about the bride or groom. the groom’s mom said that for 32 years, e had been in a haze and was suddenly alive and vibrant. e said that he had learned from a over the course of their courtship what love really is and admitted that he hadn’t known diddly before knowing her, notwithstanding his serious study of the topic as part of his philosopthy degree. he knows now that for him, love will be to spend the rest of his life doing everything in his power to make a happy. they are a match made in heaven, if you’ll pardon the cliche. two people, mature beyond their years in their love and in their ability to express it vocally to each other and in the presence of others. not everyone can do that. own it.
after dinner, the bride’s family performed. songs of someone else’s composing with lyrics adjusted for the occasion. i filmed it all, and if i paid for this blog, i’d have video posting privileges. but since i use the free version, i don’t. just imagine rapping and singing and laughter as we all celebrated together that a&e have found each other at last. an unlikely and happy miracle when all is said and done.
eh and fj and awd and i sat at a table together for the reception. we filled every page of the advice book with words of wisdom and love. we await the praise and adoration from a&e that we surely deserve.
i should say something about the dinner on friday night. that’s the night that all of a’s friends and family who’ve been hearing about each other for years finally met. i met linda and mom shields and heather w and anne and liz and allison and on and on and on. it felt like meeting old friends. our common love for a and her love for us provided an instant understanding of our respectiveness awesomeness. i talked with heather w about ivf, my likely and oh so exciting future. we all talked about how wonderful a is.
and eh and the other heather w and i received our wedding weekend baskets. complete with chips and gum and butterfinger and wedding cd and other goodies.
(how about that for not with a bang but a whimper.)