Friday, March 30, 2007

Happy Anniversary, Honey!

Sixteen years ago, after being together for 7 1/2 years, we married, my sweetheart and I, in the very room that I am sitting in right now. It was half past three on March 30th. 3:30 on 3/30. Yeah, I am goofy like that.

It snowed that morning and, having put off the wedding that was originally planned to take place in March of 1990 (I put it off when we found out Jake was to be born because my mother wanted to quickly move it up. Not that I'm hard-headed, or anything...). I joked that it was hell freezing over because the wedding was finally happening.

The night before I was still hemming the bottom of my dress and sewing the lace on while eating a corned beef sandwich from the beer, wine and deli place across the street from where we lived at the time. My best friend kept me company and was the only witness when, faced with the prospect of sewing lace until the next morning, the decision was made to use glue. Wouldn't you know that the glued parts ended up looking nicer than the sewn parts. My shoes were old ballet slippers, horrid pink painted over with cream shoe paint and lace glued on top.

The next morning the guy who was supposed to do my hair didn't show up on time. He ran late enough that I panicked and ended up with my best friend at her hair place. It was in a mall and I had to run out through the mall, veil streaming behind me, to get to my car.

The best man's car was having steering problems and Billiam was to ride with him so that we wouldn't have two cars when it was over. I had visions of the steering failing altogether and them ending up down an embankment. We were all young and poor and car repairs were put off until they absolutely had to happen. If the car started and shifted into gear, it could wait until the next paycheck.

The ceremony itself was short and sweet. Jake was our ring bearer and, not wanting to walk, was carried by my maid of honor. Oh, and he wore a cream linen suit, shirt and tie that I made. No glue was involved. As we started to walk, I think my dad said something to me about it not being to late to change my mind. I'm pretty sure he was kidding.

We have a video in which Billiam, nervous as can be, blinks a mile a minute through the whole ceremony. Watching it together later, he told me that he wasn't nervous about marrying me, but about everyone watching us. Be still, my heart.

The only photos we have of that day are snapshots. The cake was divine.

We were huge Grateful Dead fans and one of my best friends read this at the wedding:

In the attics of my life,
full of cloudy dreams unreal.
Full of tastes no tongue can know,
and lights no eyes can see.
When there was no ear to hear, you sang to me.

I have spent my life seeking
all that's still unsung.
Bent my ear to hear the tune,
and closed my eyes to see.
When there was no strings to play,
you played to me.

In the book of loves own dream,
where all the print is blood.
Where all the pages are my days,
and all the lights grow old.
When I had no wings to fly,
you flew to me,
you flew to me.

In the secret space of dreams,
where I dreaming lay amazed.
When the secrets all are told,
and the petals all unfold.
When there was no dream of mine,
you dreamed of me.

words by Robert Hunter

When we drove away that night, we got about seven miles up the road when warning lights appeared on the dash and my car stopped running. We had to be picked up by my dad and a friend who was a mechanic. We drove to our honeymoon on the Carolina coast in my parents' Bonneville. Oh, we were living the high life. Just before leaving we deposited gift checks and mailed bills. I told you we were broke. Not able to afford the fancy room for the whole trip, we stayed in a modest room , but splurged on the honeymoon suite for one night. We spent lazy days walking on the windy beach, taking Jake to an aquarium and hunting down restaurants that weren't closed for the season.

But that wedding, fraught with mishaps, led to a wonderful marriage. I could not ask for a better husband or father for our children. In all the craziness of my teenage years, I found a person who made me feel safe, was willing to put up with me and glory alleluia, loved me, to boot. My grandmother, an excellent judge of character, later told me she always did like Bill. Yup, Nanny, me too.



Blogger msubulldog said...

What a great story--Happy Anniversary! :)

3/29/2007 10:47 PM  
Blogger Angela Martínez said...

Oh, how sweet! You've got me feeling all mushy this morning. Thanks for sharing it with us, and happy anniversary to you!

3/30/2007 4:59 AM  
Anonymous pippi said...

Attics was read at your wedding?!
How beautifully auspicious!

Congrats! & Many more!

3/30/2007 7:47 AM  
Blogger SighsofmyLife said...

You look like you're 16 years old! Happy Anniversary. Many, many, many more happier ones.

3/30/2007 8:00 PM  
Blogger The Boot said...

What a sweet story! Thanks for sharing!

4/01/2007 4:15 AM  
Anonymous Kate said...

Happy anniversary, 16 years as married, that's a long time. In December my husband and I has been married for 18 years, unbelivable Seems like it was last year. Have a nice Easter.

4/01/2007 6:35 AM  
Anonymous frectis said...

Happy anniversary!

4/01/2007 11:15 PM  
Blogger Gretchen said...


4/04/2007 7:41 PM  

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