The Official Wedding Day of the Year


June 11, 2011

I’m quite certain that at the rate I am going I will NEVER learn moderation when it comes to alcohol. Not that I’m a lush, but set me down with a cold mug of beer or a full bodied glass of red and I just can’t seem stop from having just one more and then I wake up to the sound of my Granny visiting at 9:15 on a Saturday morning and wanting to walk to the neighbor’s yard sale, and headache or not I’m going!

I have deemed today the Official Wedding Day of the year. I have no less than three friends getting married today AND it happens to be my parent’s anniversary. Also, according to my Facebook feed it appears that at least 5% of the posts are in regards to a wedding taking place somewhere today.

(Completing this post post-wedding)

I realized tonight that being a married woman attending a wedding without her other half is quite possibly the WORST situation one can be in when it comes to weddings or special events. Not only did that description fit me unfortunately for the entire weekend of wedding festivities, but it was also coupled with the fact that I represented an age group that was not in line with that of the bride and groom and their bridal party, nor with that of their parent’s and their invited guests. Basically I was one of maybe 3 people there my age. So dateless, friendless, but not drinkless I danced with my family and hopped in for the Macarena and other harmless solo-encouraged songs.

All in all it was a strange wedding for me. The weather was perfect, the ceremony went off without a hitch, the reception was held in a gorgeous historic manor in the heart of downtown Asheville. Music filled the room, everyone was all smiles and the crowd was not afraid to boogy down with their bad selves. But as I watched my friend Matt, who is really more like a little brother considering we used to bath together as toddlers, dance and laugh and have the time of his life on the dance floor, I felt…old. Which didn’t really make sense given that I will only be celebrating my second anniversary this September and I am still attending weddings of my close friends. Weddings in general are not a distant stage of life that I no longer participate in, so I couldn’t really understand my reaction to it all.

On the other end of the spectrum I had the privilege of getting to experience first hand my grandfather (a.k.a. Papaw) letting loose a little, sipping on a cold ale and getting his groove on with the young pups. I watched his aging body and not so loose joints jive to the beat, and the smile on his face was priceless. I could see the yearning in his eyes to be able to shave off about 30 years and really give those “young punks” a run for their money. In a way it was heartbreaking. If it were physically possible to give him years from my life I would without thinking. If for no other reason than my selfish desire to have all of these amazing experiences with him.

It’s only been in the past few years that our immediate family has loosened up a tad and become a lot more open and non-censored around each other. But it came almost too late. I lost the first of my four grandparents this past Christmas season. I felt robbed. I felt like I was just getting to the age where I could really cherish my time with them and appreciate that I still had four living grandparents, all still in their first marriages and all living within ten minutes of each other. A large portion of our move back home was so I could soak the time I have with them in like a sponge. And then my grandfather was taken away from me. I still can’t understand why, and it still feels like a dull knife shredding my heart. I know how blessed I am, I only pray I will be given enough time to get back to Candler and really take it all in.

My Papaw fell when he was leaving. A left leg dulled to feeling from a stroke years ago and steep concrete steps with no railing got the best of him. He was embarrassed and I was just sad. I wanted so bad for him to just laugh it off and move on, and I hoped that he wouldn’t shut down and never let go and just have fun again. I wish I could tell him that he made my night (year), but to save further embarrassment I stayed my distance and made sure to tell him later how much fun I had.

Age is a funny thing. It gives us the wisdom and life experiences that mold us into incredible human beings, but it goes the opposite way. It perplexes me that when we finally get it, get life and learn to love it and love ourselves, it’s almost over and our aged bodies can’t get out there in the world and live anymore. Why is it when we are young and able-bodied we have to work our lives away and when our work is finally done we’re too tired to enjoy it?

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