Tuesday, July 22, 2008

And Send it Soaring

Now I wish my very first post as a positive, Martha Stewart-esque Bride was going to be uplifting and happy. But it's not. (Old habits die hard, and just changing my blog's focus hasn't solved the problems that plague my wedding planning.)

Instead I'm going to share with you what this past weekend was like. As with all things that run afoul, it began in New Jersey. (Ok, I'm sorry, I don't actually hate New Jersey, but it's so helpless and easy to make fun of that I just can't help it.) But this really did happen in NJ.

Mr. F and I were going to good ole NJ for his Father's birthday. I was less-than-pleased to be spending more time in NJ on the heels of Brunchgate, but obviously had little choice (having a job where I used to work incessantly on the weekends did have one upside - a lovely built in excuse to avoid going to visit relatives on the weekend..."Sorry, Aunt Lilian, I'd love to come to the Glen Miller revival festival in the Poconos this weekend but I have to file this motion on Monday and the senior partner will be very angry if I don't do it.") As such, we traveled up to New Jersey whereupon the crap that is wedding became even more acute.
First, I went dress shopping with my mom. Which was fine. Except (feel free to review previous posts) that I had previously changed my entire color scheme just so my Mom could find a dress complimentary to her skin tone. She jettisoned all colors selected and chose green. FINE.

Then, I rushed off from dress shopping with Mom to have a discussion with Baskin-Robbins. (As you may recall, Baskin-Robbins is my sister-in-law to be - that would be Mr. F's brother's wife - who I have not invited to be a bridesmaid.) I took B-R to lunch and cried while telling her why I didn't make her a bridesmaid. Her response was actually fabulous, something along the lines of "it's your wedding, I totally understand and I didn't expect to be asked anyway." Woo-hoo! Moment of complete fulfillment. See? It only takes a little maturity and perspective for things to go right. Wrong.

Finally, on Mr. F's father's birthday, I sat at the table with Mr. F and his parents who tell me they have some people to add to the guest list. (And I swear on all that is holy, that this is true.) To be exact, they have 26 people to add. Actually, they have about 40 people to add, but they think only 26 will actually come. And before I can get a crying jag in edgewise, they also tell me that they have gone to all these people's weddings and it's an embarrassment not to invite them to their son's, that they don't understand why I wouldn't want to invite people who are just going to give me money, and that they have known these people 30 years.

Can someone give me a reality check at this juncture by the way? Am I the ONLY person who doesn't (honest to god) care about how much money I get as gifts from guests? I don't see the number of guests I invite as an investment (which is why I want a small wedding). Maybe I am silly? I'm feeling more like that everyday. I honestly just picture the wedding as a small group of intimate friends and family seeing me at my happiest and most vulnerable. And the idea of complete strangers watching me like a TLC wedding reality television show just so I can get $500 bucks from them repulses me. My wedding isn't a financial investment; it's an emotional one.

Not to mention the fact that I don't see my wedding day as one where I want to make small talk with people I have never met. I don't want to be asked "what do you do for work?" on my wedding day. Or "where did you grow up?" or "Has your hair always been red?" or "Where are your parents from?". To me, this is a day when people should know these things. Maybe they don't need to know every single thing about me, but I didn't like speed dating when I was single, why would I want to spend my wedding day engaged in the very same sort of ritual? (Greet, small talk chat, move on. Greet, small talk chat, move on. NO THANK YOU.)

Anyway, Mr. F ushered me outside after about 15 minutes of talking with the Future-in-Laws. And the tears starting coming before we even got outside the door. The decision was that we would make no decision on this one for now. (Which doesn't bode well for the Save the Dates sadly sitting in my house. They've been hoping to find homes throughout the US and to valiantly inform people of my wedding date, but instead they've patiently waited day after day on my kitchen table with no travel in sight.)

Fast forward to Tuesday morning (yes, just yesterday). I spent all of Monday telling everyone how I successfully navigated the Baskin-Robbins snafoo. SO PROUD! I was dwelling on the positive - not the negative!

I'm chugging my coffee and simultaneously putting on makeup (since I'm once again late for work - an amazing feat given that I'm only a few blocks away) when the phone rings. It's Mr. F. "Hi, Sweetie Pie. So I debated whether to tell you this, and I probably shouldn't, but I just spoke with my Mom and apparently Baskin-Robbins has been crying since Sunday since she feels so left out since she's the only person not in the wedding party."

And my response: "Haha! You're SOOOO funny." [Relationship history: Mr. F & I are notorious for playing tricks on each other and trying to get the other to believe some completely false fact. I have some good stories on this tip that I should add in here at some point.]

"No really, actually I'm not joking."

"HAHA! I'm not falling for this. I just talked to Baskin-Robbins two days ago and she was totally fine with everything. We even went shoe shopping after." [Note: I got a great pair of brown heels for winter - Nordstrom is having their Semi-Annual Sale.]

Silence settled and I realized that Mr. F. was not joking. So apparently while telling me to my face that all was ok, Baskin-Robbins was crying to everyone else that she couldn't believe I didn't include her. (By the way, if she felt bad, I could certainly understand that - you can't control your feelings. My issue is that by telling everyone in the world how terrible she feels, it reflects badly on me and makes me feel awful and once again, I'm in a lose-lose situation. And I guess this might sound incredibly selfish, but this reaction only reinforces my original suspicion - if this girl was in my wedding party, I would end up babysitting her and her tender feelings on my wedding day, rather than focusing on the less-important-every-day-task-at-hand of getting myself married.)

And how did I resolve this one? I haven't. Screw it. I did my part and I'm over it. Besides, I have bigger issues to deal with. No really, I do. Stay tuned.

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