I loved to go to them, I loved to pretend them. I loved to sneak into the guest bedroom closet and try on my mother's veil to play in. (This was a big no-no for some reason though...)
When I did get married almost 9 years ago, my best friend and maid of honor quipped that it was the day I had been practicing for my whole life.
So it should come as no surprise that my almost 5-year old daughter seems to have inherited this fascination. She hasn't been to a wedding that she would remember yet, but she has recently discovered our wedding album. And since she also has a love for princesses and fairy tales, it seems the pictures from our big day are the perfect merging of worlds for her.
So tonight I decided to really blow her away... I told her we had an actual "movie" of our wedding day and promised to get it out after dinner and baths. This turned into a HUGE event here in our house, and I'm only sorry my husband was gone tonight and missed it.
From the beginning, I could sense the effect that watching the video would have on me. Right away I saw loved ones who are no longer with us (four in all by my count as I watched, a grandmother, an uncle, a young cousin, and an old family friend) and of course the countless "little" cousins who have grown so much. I was choked up from the beginning and wasn't sure I would be able to watch - or that I even wanted to, to be honest. I loved our wedding, watching the video brings back such beautiful memories. But it's so bittersweet too. It's amazing how much life changes in such a short time. Seeing loved ones who have since died - on video- is so hard - I swear, I could actually smell my grandmother in the room with me while I watched.
I didn't have long to focus on my own feelings, however. As the music swelled to a crescendo and began the trumpeting sounds of "Here Comes the Bride," my three children took in a collective gasp and my daughter said, "This is my FAVORITE part! Mommy, you are SO BEAUTEEFUL!" The three-year old quickly agreed, while my 7-year old yelled, "There's PAPA!"
"Mommy, someday daddy will walk me down the island like that," my daughter piped in.
"How many people were there, like 30?" asked my oldest son. When I told him the number was more like 400 he just kept saying, "I... can't... believe... you know 400 people!" (I didn't bother to explain to him that having all those guests doesn't mean we knew them all!)
Even they seemed a little taken aback when I pointed out that my little sister, who was our flower girl, was actually about a year younger at our wedding than Ethan is today. Yikes.
At some point near the end, there's a fairly decent shot of my mother and it's easy to see she is crying. Ethan said, "GG is crying because you've gotten wed so fast."
And so it went. Watching the event that marked the beginning of this beautiful family through the eyes of the children we could have only dreamed and hoped for on that warm September day.
They wanted to watch everything, but quickly realized there was a lot of adult talking going on and agreed to let me fast forward to the "part where you get married."
Ethan was a little disappointed at the camera angle for the kiss, but laughed hysterically when he saw me shake my bouquet in the air after we were announced as husband and wife. "You held that up like it was a football!" he said.
It was getting late, so I promised they could watch the reception tomorrow and we turned the TV off. I'm going to have to remember to take notes when we watch the next part - they are most looking forward to the "part where you and daddy feed each other." Stay tuned!