So it turns out, it’s really hard to write about your wedding. Regardless of how many drafts I go through, my words never seem to capture the day properly. I either sound too trite or too cynical, and while I certainly exist somewhere between both, neither adequately describe the day. I’ve never been one to glorify weddings and I never thought of it as “the best day of my life”. It was perfect and it felt like us and that’s all Chris and I ever wanted.
We were engaged in December and married in August, in the 2-week period I found myself back in Canada. Five days after the wedding Chris and I both flew to Scotland so needless to say, it was a whirlwind. Our wedding was a moment of calm, at least for us, in a week full of chaos and change. This is due entirely to our incredibly understanding parents and siblings. Thank you Mums and Dads for being so unflustered and understanding for the entire duration of the engagement. Thanks to our siblings for their patience and encouragement. Thank you to our bridesmaids and groomsmen for their unwavering support and enthusiasm. Thank you to our friends, old and new, local and abroad, for all their kind words and big smiles.
From beginning to end, the day was filled with family and friends and there wasn’t a single detail that didn’t carry some sort of meaning to the both of us. We got married in a historical building down the road from my parents’ house. We decided on a Sunday because it’s my favourite day of the week and Chris really likes Sunday roasts. We had bunting made from maps of Edmonton and Edinburgh to show both where we’re from and where we were going. We had flowers grown and arranged by my Mum, plucked straight from the backyard the morning before. I wore a dress I’d bought in Edinburgh and a veil my friend Zarah sewed in her kitchen as I looked on and offered no help at all. Chris wore a bowtie and bright socks because big days call for bowties and because he always wears bright socks. I gave my bridesmaids necklaces stamped with the location of our first meeting and Chris gave his groomsmen bright socks, because, like I said, Chris always wears bright socks. We had a ceremony I wrote and vows we wrote for each other. We had our godmothers read excerpts from writers with words far better than mine. We took photos in the ravine behind our old university because it’s beautiful, and because countless hours were spent walking those paths together. Our friend Max took the photos because he’s equally talented at taking photos and making us laugh.
We had champagne and Pimms and my Mum’s fruitcake for good luck. We had tables decorated with runners sewn by Chris’ Mum and terrariums done by mine. We had speeches from our oldest friends that resulted in laughter and tears and some serious blushing from my new husband. But that’s what happens when you give free range to friends you’ve both known since you were 5 years old. Chris’ parents spoke and we cried something fierce and my Dad spoke and we laughed just as hard. We had lemonade and popcorn because it’s what Chris and I ate on our first date. We had tea and cake because it’s quite possibly my favourite duo in the world. We listened to jazz played by our family friends and Chris and I danced, very poorly, to The Way You Look Tonight. Then I danced with my Dad and Chris danced with his Mum and everybody cried while the four of us tried not to step on each other’s toes.
We knew every single person there that day, and as we looked out at the sea of faces it was overwhelmingly full of reassurance and love. There’s something quite wonderful about standing up in front of a room full of the people you hold dearest, and knowing that they are looking at you and wishing you nothing but the best in the world. At the end of the day it wont be the details that we will remember fondly, but rather the warm atmosphere that encapsulated the beginning of our newest, and quite possibly biggest, adventure yet. Now…how’s that for trite?
Photos by Max Hurd