Jun 20, 2010

I say a little prayer for you


As I type this, I'm in the comfort of my parent's home.  I get to sleep in my childhood bed.  I get to play with my dogs.  My dad is asleep, my brother attached to his video game, my mom and I sitting on the couch side by side; Toby, the youngest dog, is laying next to me snoring while his head is positioned strategically on my hand as I type this.  I just watched the 10:00 news on KVUE after going to HEB with my mom for groceries.  I'm so comforted and content and home, and I know that one day, when the time is right, I'll move back to Texas.

That's really besides the point.  This weekend I am back in Texas for what seemed to be a day that would never come: one of my best friends, Erin, was married.  I had anticipated this day since we met: who we'd both marry, when we'd get married, what we would wear, and so on.  I never thought this day would actually come.

I flew into Austin on Thursday after what seemed to be a never-ending flight from Los Angeles.  After getting in and getting home, I was greeted by my brand new iPad that Aunt Brenda bought for me along with a $100 gift card to buy some books and applications (thank you Aunt Bienda!).  I'm lucky enough that my family thinks of me when new electronics come out, so while I would have loved to have had an iPad, I knew I wouldn't be able to afford it.  Cue my family, always to the rescue.  I picked up a few things from the house and took my brother's truck to run some errands before making the four hour (yes, four hours -- not three, Stinkles) to Ozona for the wedding.

I got a mani/pedi with a woman my mom has been going to for the past six years and then decided I needed some color, so I went over to the local tanning salon and subjected myself to VersaSpa.  I have to say that it's a lot better than Mystic and while I did look offensively tan before I took my shower, the color was nice.

I was walking around the Georgetown Target trying to find a swimsuit when I realized how terrible I looked: no make-up, no bra, a gigantic curling iron burn showing beneath my pajama shorts, my hair resembling a rat's nest.  I can only imagine what people were thinking when they looked at me.  I can't forget that I didn't have on actual shoes, just those little flip-flops you get from the nail salon.  It was a sight.

So after completing the necessary errands, I headed to Ozona.  About 30 minutes away, I got pulled over for going 85 in a 60.  That's reckless driving, in case you aren't aware.  I told the cop that it wasn't my truck, I live in California, and was trying to get to Ozona for a wedding, when he responded with, "Oh, the Stokes/Enke wedding?"  Um, yes.  Apparently everyone in Ozona and the surrounding cities knew about this affair, and luckily it got me out of a ticket.

The bridal party stayed at a beautiful ranch out in the middle of nowhere.  The place was a glorified hotel, each room complete with two beds and a bathroom.  I got to stay in the main house with Erin and the first night I got so freaked out: there were taxidermied animals everywhere, so when I saw two mice laying side-by-side in the corner of the bathroom, I assumed possibly it was a part of the ongoing theme of the house.  I was terribly wrong.  We had some critters in our room so I forced Erin to sleep with me that night.

Friday was a big day.   There was a bridal luncheon at Wilson's aunt's house that was so beautiful and peaceful.  The food was delicious and the company was great.  The weather was not bad either so we were all thankful for that!  That night, after rehearsing at the church, we had a huge fiesta themed dinner at Wilson's parent's home.  I got to give my MOH speech and let me tell you, I was a blubbering idiot.  I started crying the first sentence I got out of my mouth.  I haven't been in a wedding ever, except once as a flower girl, so enduring my first rodeo as the MOH was pretty intense but also one of the best experiences I will have.



After promising to go to bed at 10:00 and staying up until 2:00 a.m., we woke up on Saturday ready to take on Erin's wedding day.  Most of the bridal party got their hair done professionally, but I never look good with an up-do so I opted to leave my hair down.  We all wore our bridal wraps that Erin gave us at the luncheon and chatted about the day's upcoming festivities.  Erin looked calm and she was literally glowing the whole day.

Once the bridal party got ready, we all hauled it over to the church.  Erin's hair was done there and we also had a fun time getting her all tucked in her dress.  She looked like a bridal model from the 50s; very old fashioned yet stunning.  Her hair reminded me of Julia Roberts in Steel Magnolias.  The whole weekend was a Julia Roberts flashback:  the whole time I was thinking about My Best Friend's Wedding and the cast singing "I Say a Little Prayer for You" in the seafood restaurant with the waiters in the crab claws singing.  Shockingly enough, we got ready and took pictures with 30 minutes to spare --\ w]
"""""""""""""""""""{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{{  (Toby, my dog just helped my write this paragraph...)

Anyway --- we had 30 minutes to spare, so that meant a lot of time to think.  We were all pretty anxious and ready to get started, but Erin remarked how she wish time would slow down so it wouldn't be over so soon.  Once 6:00 rolled around, the bridesmaids exited the room and myself, the Matron of Honor and Erin's dad stuck around to help hide her from Wilson before the ceremony (the church had a tricky layout).  The whole time I was keeping watch of when we could get Erin to the back of the church.

When I got the cue, I walked down the hall to tell her.  "Erin!  It's time!"  I looked at her, and she kind of paused for a minute and then her eyes got really big before saying, "Dad!  It's time!"  It totally was reminiscent of Julia Roberts in Steel Magnolias when she goes to her dad (whose been deafened by shotgun blasts) and says:

"Daddy!  It's time!"
"What?"
"It's time!"
"IT'S TIME!"

One of the funniest parts of the movie :)  We got her to the back of the church without a hitch and as everyone walked down the aisle I knew I was going to start crying.  I was trying really hard, let me tell you.  But I fixed her veil and her train and before I walked down I looked back and her and said "Erin!" and she looked at me and I said, "I love you!"  and she told me she loved me too.  It was a precious moment I will never forget.

The ring bearer followed behind me and my groomsman and he was as total riot.  He was basically fast-pitching his pillow down the aisle in between screaming and giggling.  At one point he tried to get under my dress.  He was only two, so I'll give him a free pass.  The best part about him was that at the reception he pounded my fist and blew it up like a champ.  I couldn't believe he even knew how to do that!

The ceremony came and went, and while most ceremonies mirror one another, this one was significant because, for obvious reasons, my best friend was the one getting married.  It made 1st Corinthians a lot more relatable for me (it's one of my favorite verses) and something that stuck out was that Love Endures, Love is not self-seeking, Love never fails.  It's patient and kind.  It isn't puffed up.  All of these things reminded me to be careful and cautious in how I love other people and to remember these things when giving love to another person.

The reception was fabulous, but being at a wedding alone is never that much fun.  The whole time I kept looking at Erin and Wilson and how they looked at each other like they were the only ones in the world at that point.  And then I had a flash in my mind of My Best Friend's Wedding: Julia has already given her best friend "their" song to share with his new wife.  She was sitting alone at a table at the reception, talking to her gay friend, all alone.  And at the end, her best friend and his wife are leaving and Julia gets lost in the bustle of everything, thinking she wouldn't get to say good-bye, until he finds her out of nowhere and gives her a hug.  I couldn't help feeling that way last night.  While I'm so happy for Erin (Wilson is the creme de la creme), I know things will be different for us now because she is a wife and Wilson is now the most important person in her life.  I am comforted that he is with her, but sad as anyone would be, knowing their best friend doesn't really need them anymore.  I'm sure her parents were a mess about this factor as well... which is only normal I suppose.

So I cried when they left but dangit, I got some fabulous pictures out of the whole ordeal.  Getting to experience this event was an honor, a privilege and eye opening, knowing that love can progress to a level like that through years of commitment, trust and mostly faith.

Erin, I love you, and I meant everything I said in my speech, minus the fact that you graduated early -- I literally have photos of graduation together, so I don't know why I even thought that!  Haha.  I'm a baby dumb.


 1If I speak in the tongues[a] of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames,[b] but have not love, I gain nothing.
 4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
 8Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. 11When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. 12Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
 13And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

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