When I was young, I dreamt of the perfect wedding day, just like what movies and books told me young girls do. I pictured myself walking down the aisle in a long, white wedding dress carrying my bouquet of lilies. I had a clear picture of what kind of food will be served during my reception. And of course, I had the idea of my perfect husband. I figured he’ll be in a nice white suit that would match my dress, of course.
But reality struck me when I started planning my wedding last year. I didn’t realize how much work goes into creating an event. I figured I only needed to decide on the church and the venue. I didn’t realize that I had to make decisions on colors, themes, and entertainment. Aside from the hullabaloos I had deal with, I also had to make hard choices like not inviting family members or canceling our first-option venue to save more money.
Frankly, when I was planning the wedding, I gave up.
I talked to my fiance and asked him if we could just elope. I wanted the wedding to be done and over with. We won’t have to worry about the budget or every minuscule details of the wedding.
Fortunately, he said no. Because here’s what happened when I woke up on the day of my wedding.
That morning was crazy. Everyone were getting ready–the ninangs and ninongs, the bridesmaids, my family. I started feeling anxious and stressed. I wasn’t in a good mood. And all the while, all I wanted was to see my fiance. I felt like I needed to see his smile and to hear him telling me that everything will be all right.
But because tradition dictates that we were not supposed to see each other before the wedding ceremony. So, even if all my nerves were going berserk, I had to wait. And I had to wait a long time because our priest was an hour late (you can imagine the stress I was going through).
After what seemed like forever, I was called to come out of the bridal car. I took my place at the entrance of our church and took a deep breath as I look straight ahead. At first, I was nervous. I don’t get to be in a situation when a lot of people are looking at me–or rather, focused on me. It was terrifying for me and I started panicking.
But then, I saw my fiance. He was smiling at me. And although we weren’t talking to each other, I knew he was telling me that everything will be all right. Slowly, all the doubts, anxieties, and stress floated away. I started laughing; especially when I couldn’t walk properly because I was wearing a long, fluffy dress. I looked around and took everything in.
This is my wedding. It may not have been perfect or the one I dreamed about when I was little, but here it is. And I understood why people make such a big deal about it. It was for that one moment when you are slowly walking down the aisle to see the love of your life patiently waiting. It was that moment when each step you take is a choice to spend the rest of your life with that special person. It was in that moment when nothing else mattered–everything else was just background noise.
I’m happy to have experience that sense of elation. I’m lucky to have a husband who knew not to give up so we can have that moment to share for the rest of our lives. All I know now is that all the stress, disappointments, and fatigue was worth every second I spent on that aisle. And in that moment, my wedding was perfect.
(All photos courtesy of the author and Artbox Photography)
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Lorey is a small girl with a big appetite for love, life, culture, and food. Yes, most especially, food.