Sunday, December 12, 2010

Surviving the first wedding...

I knew this day would come.
I had been thinking about it for months....
The day I would attend John's best friend's wedding. Tim and Lisa got engaged a few months before me and John... but their wedding would be after ours. Ours in Oct/Nov and theirs in Dec. We were very excited about it at the time. Two married couples hanging out together and sharing married couple moments together.
And then I lost John.
And then the reality set in.
There was no wedding for us anymore.
But everyone else's lives would continue.... weddings, engagements, babies, etc.

Tim and Lisa's unforgettable wedding date.

I got dressed up in a new dress. I wore Annie's ridiculously high heel shoes and I had my hair curled by a hair dresser. I wanted to look nice. I wanted to look as put together as possible. My intentions this summer were to lose weight by the wedding time and show people how really put together I was. But what expectations I set for myself... ha
I showed up at the church for the ceremony... running a little late with Annie and John's mom. We made it just in time. All the parents were being escorted down the aisle....and then the groomsmen. One of them being John's dad who was asked by Tim to stand in for John. As he walked down the aisle all I could think about was John's face... him dressed in a tux smiling as he walked in with Tim and the other men. I was so happy for Jim (John's dad) being so strong. He was really doing a great job of standing in for John. I couldn't believe how put together he was. And I wanted to be the same.
But the scene was so familiar.
A church decorated.
Classical wedding music. A violin. A singer. An organ player. Flowers and candles. People dressed up.
I am tearing up a little. Just the atmosphere alone makes me emotional. Why hasnt this been me? Why am I sitting down at a wedding in a pew? Why am I not in my wedding gown holding my dad's hand and with butterflies in my stomach? Instead my face is heating up. My eyes are uncontrollably watering and my mind is filling with jealousy. I try and stop. I need to be happy for my friends. But I am not jealous of them in particular. I am just angry. I am just upset that I am back to square one. I am single at a wedding but I have a beautiful ring on my left finger. Because I can't stand to take it off. Because it still represents a promise to me. Then Lisa walks down the aisle. She is beautiful... as every bride should be. She is happy and beaming. The whole ceremony was emotional for me. I had no tissues either so I kept wiping my tears with my hands and wiping them on the pews. (well I sure wasn't wiping it on my dress). At one point Tim and Lisa were lighting their unity candles and the vocalist sang "Grow Old Along with Me" ... a song I was going to have played at our wedding.
The lyrics are so pretty....

"Grow old along with me
The best is yet to be
When our time has come
We will be as one
God bless our love
God bless our love
Grow old along with me
Two branches of one tree
Face the setting sun
When the day is done
God bless our love
God bless our love
Spending our lives together
Man and wife together
World without end
World without end
Grow old along with me
Whatever fate decrees
We will see it through
For our love is true
God bless our love
God bless our love "

That made me sad.
But. In the end the ceremony ended. A new husband and wife were formed... and their lives are just beginning.

On to the reception. We got there an hour early and I took in a beer with Annie and Sarah. Once the reception started I mingled with John's friends... gave my congrats to the bride and groom....and took pictures.
I was a bit dissapointed my friend Mike didn't show up.
Was so happy to see Jeff! He's been on tour with Blue Man Group forever and it was nice to say hi. People that helped me survive the night for sure were Annie, Jim and Sarah and Billy Fornaci and his girlfriend. They were the most fun of all.
Once we sat down at the reception you had your classic reception lineup. The wedding party coming out... the first dance... the toasts. And that's where things got hard. I kept imagining my own wedding during all these things. How it would have been different and how it would have been the same. And the toasts... to a full life together... and blah blah... I was slowly losing it... I held back the tears as much as I could until it went into a full wail. Annie put her arm on me while Jim came to my rescue. He slipped me out the side door that went into the kitchen while I just wailed and cried. I started to gasp and gulp. I was having a full on melt down. How could this be happening??? Is this really my life now?? Back to going to weddings and never being the bride I have always wanted to be. Attending weddings as a guest.... but never as the bride. How close I was to that happiness. How close WE were to it. I am so pissed John will never get that chance. At least I have a chance in the future... to find love again. To possibly get married. To someone I love. To have children and live a happy life together on Earth. John, however, was not given that chance.
In the back of the kitchen John's dad kept telling me to "think about Tim and Lisa" and how it was their day to be happy for them. And I am. And I was. But I can't not just stop and think of the shoulda coulda wouldas. The regrets and jealously and anger all rolled up into a happy occasion.
I put myself together and made my way back out. I made in through the rest of the wedding. All thanks to alcohol and friends.
And I woke up this morning with a hangover.
And another hurdle was jumped. And there are so many more to come.


MandyMy said...

I have been down this road many times now, and have a whole bunch more ahead of me. It gets easier, but there are still those moments that'll break your heart. I never cried at weddings, and now I do. But, that's okay, because people cry at weddings, maybe not for the reasons we do, but nevertheless we fit in!! :) Hang in there lovie!! HUGS!!

Ora Diana said...

Thank you for writing this. I had a friends wedding to go to a few months ago and instead of going I RSVP'ed saying no because I knew I wouldn't make it through the wedding. But in May I have one of Rob's closest friends weddings to go to and that's not one I can avoid. I am already dreading it because Rob and I talked about going all the time. And I completely understand your anger. It's not fair! XOXO

Star said...

I was a disaster my first wedding. They kept saying till death to you part and being grateful for every morning you wake up together. I sobbed thru the wedding. I have learned I must have tissues with me and if I cannot bring a date, I do not go. When I photographed a wedding a couple of months ago, I had to remove myself. To not think about my own wedding. To not look for the similarities but focus on the differences.