One year ago today was my wedding. This was a second marriage for both of us, scheduled to take place on a friend’s farm. Ironically, Manny and I had had our first weddings outdoors too. His was a blistering hot day in August, but mine was a picture perfect, sunny, no humidity, gentle breeze kind of day. Although the weather was perfect, many other things were not. As I stood at the altar about to take my vows at my first wedding, a voice whispered in my head, “What are you doing? You are making a big mistake!! Run!” I didn’t, and although it was an ill-fated marriage, I can’t regret it because my daughter came from that marriage. I am still very friendly with my ex, and feel we have a good relationship. But this wedding was going to be all I had ever dreamed of–this time I had my very own real life Prince Charming and we would be married with all of our family and friends there to celebrate with us–or so I thought. The day I had dreamed about, planned, shopped and hoped for had arrived. It was to be this dreamy, quaint little country wedding on a good friends farm. Except I forgot that the one thing I couldn’t plan for, shop for or flat out just wish away was the weather. The entire month of June had been one rainy day after another, but from dawn on that day, it was as if the skies were completely open and it was a full on deluge of rain almost non-stop the entire day. I am not sure where there was more water–outside or in the car as I bawled the entire way to our location. And I mean, ugly cry bawled. I was completely devastated. The roads were flooded and we almost couldn’t even make it to our destination. I was leading the way there and got separated from my mom in traffic due to the rerouting and so we were late to get there. The woman who was to do the ceremony was lost and just happened upon us as we were driving out. Many of our family and friends couldn’t make it. My cousins were half way there and had to turn around because of the weather. Cancellations and regrets were pouring in from people I had really hoped to see.
Once at the site, things didn’t get better. Guests had to park on mud filled paths and then try to navigate around the puddles to get to tent. Clothes and shoes were ruined (I still haven’t had the guts to look to see if my dress came clean). My best friend was encased in mud and grass almost up to her knees from helping us get things ready. The dance floor/ceremony location was sinking in the middle due to the heavily saturated ground. The entire floor was wet and therefore highly dangerous due to the chance for slipping. My hair was ruined. The curls my hairdresser had worked so hard to put in just right for me, disappeared into a straggly mess. My husband and his sons were soaking wet from carrying things from our vehicles to the tent. Its a miracle I had any makeup on at all because all I could do was cry. I had worked so hard, planned every last detail and this was how it was going to end? I couldn’t bear the thought.
Manny and I had gotten married previously in a private ceremony so this was the one for our friends and family. Since we were already married, we had decided to walk in to this ceremony together. After he was told I was ready, he walked over to the little cabin I was in. I had poured my heart, soul and every ounce of party planning knowledge I had into this wedding and it was, in my estimation, completely and totally ruined. As I was feverishly trying to make up for the time lost in transit and get my emotions in check, my handsome Prince Charming husband came in, put his arms around me and said “What can I do to help you my love? What do you need?” I was still crying and not wanting to go out there, so he pointed to the tent (there was a small window where I could see into it) and said, “Look at all these people who came to see you–people who drove all this way through this crazy rain just to see you.” As crestfallen as I was, I just looked at him and was sure my heart would burst, I loved him so much. At that moment, I knew that I had found my soulmate. The man who not only sees the cup as half full, but he is certain there is an endless supply of whatever we should want in it to keep filling it up. The perfect pair to my not-only-is-the-cup-half-empty-but-I-am-quite-certain-we-will-never-get-anything-else-in-it-again mentality. The calm in my storm.
Throughout the night when all I could see was what was wrong, he just kept saying, “What can I do for you? How can I help my love?” He bent over backwards and was patient and loving to me just as long as he could be. At just the right moment, he finally said, “Enough. This is my wedding too and you are ruining it for me. Look at everyone. They are having a good time. They are loving all this delicious food, they are dancing and talking and having a good time. Can’t you just enjoy it?” And in that moment I saw that there was two ways to see this wedding–his way or my way. I’ll have a hard time ever believing that our wedding wasn’t ruined, but because of his love and devotion in addition to tough love delivered at just the right time, I can see the positive side of it too. And while the setting wasn’t perfect and there were people that weren’t there and so greatly missed, because of him I can see that we brought happiness to a lot of people, but most especially him that night. And isn’t that all a wife really wants? To see her husband happy? Just as all he wanted was to see me happy? I am so grateful we both succeeded to some degree. That day I learned two things: you don’t always have to see eye to eye and that there isn’t a more perfect person on this earth for me! Now, a year later, I can really see both sides–the half full and the half empty.