Going to church on Easter helped take some of the pre-wedding edge off. Well, that and alcohol. On Sunday, I stood in the foyer as part of the overflow from the packed church. For Catholics, Easter service includes the renewal of our baptismal vows, followed by the priest pacing and flinging holy water at everyone. Newly wet parishioners cross themselves rather than returning fire from the blessing fonts, as the 12-year-old in me always wants to do.
It's a call-and-response thing, with the whole crowd answering him. Priest: “Do you reject Satan?” Crowd: “I do!” “And all his works?” “I do!” “And all his empty promises?” “I do!” “Do you believe in God, the Father Almighty, creator of heaven and earth?” You get the idea. Saying “I do” from the back of the church, first haltingly and then with a bit more oomph, helped put me in the right head space to say those binding words from the front of that same church, Saturday.
Looking over Facebook pictures of us the other night for the slideshow, Anj remarked that we both look so tired, with deep bags under our eyes. Planning a wedding in America in this era is a bit like training for a marathon without the muscle tone or weight loss. It's a test of endurance and the couple's iron will to see it through. Just for the wedding and reception, there are so many moving pieces that you have to nail down: the church; the priest or “officiant”; the venue; the caterers; the food; the drinks; the barkeep; the DJ; the playlist; the first song; the bridesmaids; the groomsmen; the clothes; the hair; the makeup; the flowers; the photographer; the musicians; the invites; the website; hotel; RSVPs; my God. And the rings. Do not forget the rings.
We are going to forget something, however, and it might be something pretty big. Members of our wedding party are going to scramble to fix it, worried that the big day might be ruined otherwise. Our wedding planner remembered one couple that completely forgot to get a marriage license in time. The priest agreed to marry them anyway; on the condition they’d have two anniversaries every year. Even the thought of one anniversary at this point is impossibly in the future. People are currently traveling from all over to watch us exchange vows: from BC to DC, Minnesota to Manitoba, Alberta to Tacoma. Cue the music and here comes the bride.
—Follow Jeremy Lott on Twitter: @jeremylottdiary