May 23, 1998. I will never forget that date. The day itself is sort of a blur.
Too many things happened, too many people were involved, and too much adrenaline
flooded my brain for me to remember many details. I do remember standing at the
altar as the music started to play.
The flower girl and ring bearer, both terrifically cute, walked down the aisle
together. Then our youngest bridesmaid walked out, devastatingly adorable,
and stirred some emotions deep inside me. Then came my sister, who brought
all those emotions to the surface until they escaped in the form of tears.
I tried pushing them back as the next two bridesmaids took their places, but
the floodgates opened when the most beautiful woman I had ever seen emerged
from the back of the chapel. Her father led her to my side, where she pledged
her life to me and accepted my life in return. I didn’t stop crying until we
left the chapel, at which point she began bawling (and laughing) uncontrollably.
Matt, a friend of mine from college, acted as both a groomsman and a singer.
Since he has such an amazing gift for song, he had taken part in many other
weddings, but he told me later that mine had an abundant sense
of happiness (I think it was obvious my tears flowed from
overwhelming joy) that he had never witnessed in any other wedding. It certainly
was the happiest day of my life.
Notice that I said it was the happiest day of my life. Every day
since then has competed for that title. Not every day of marriage has been
happy, of course, but they’ve all been worthy of celebration.