… Mawwaige, the bwessed awwangement, that dweam wiffin a dweam…

Oh yes, the Princess Bride. A timeless classic. And perhaps the reason that I can’t take this whole mawwaige thing that seriously, because every time I think of our wedding, I just think of this guy:

Seriously. If only that guy could do our ceremony – I would be totally stoked. It was only after a great deal of thought that we chose not to put him on our invites, with the “mawwiage” quote as the caption. That was a tough call.

Really though, judging by the number of times I’ve actually discussed my impending nuptials on this blog, you wouldn’t think I was even getting married. I remarked on this dearth to a friend the other evening, and she said perhaps it’s because my writing is a retreat from that whole reality.

But wait a second, why would I want to retreat from the reality of my wedding? I mean really, it’s not like I’m marrying Prince Humperdinck under the threat of death and being stolen away from my one true love.

Well, first and foremost, it could be because our wedding has turned into a behemoth the likes of which I have never wanted or dreamed of. With every long-lost family friend that our respective parents ask us to invite (“Oh, they probably won’t come!”), I feel myself getting one step closer to hyperventilation. And we’re still two and half months out. Imagine how I’ll feel on the day of – 120 people, plus kids, in a small, intimate setting. All focused on me. Sweet Jesus. Can I get a body double?

Naturally, with that behemoth comes all the details that I never wanted to deal with, either. I started this whole thing off wanting a small, 30-person affair at my parents’ house, pot-luck style. Yeah right. Then I blinked, and we were at three, four times that. And still growing.

So now we’re fighting over beef vs. chicken, plated vs. buffet (he won on both counts, thank you very much!), looking at hotels, trying to find a babysitter to make good on our promise of allowing children, etc etc etc. At a certain point in every such conversation, I inevitably break down and go, “But I never wanted any of this crap! Why should I have to make these decisions?”

So yeah, there is that to retreat from. At this point, the mawwiage is more stress than excitement.

But then I start thinking of why we’re debating over beef vs. chicken, how all the people we both love (and then some!) are going to be eating that dinner, how it’ll be the one time in our lives that they are all together in one place… and that makes me suck it up and keep going.

Of course, there is also the ten tons of emotional baggage that I am bringing with me into this particular mawwiage, which I won’t go into. Needless to say, I have my issues. But then, so does everyone who gets mawwied. As my therapist puts it, “I am a family and marriage counselor. If everyone figured out their issues before they got married, I wouldn’t have a job.” Ha ha. Very funny. She does have a point though.

Last but not least, I think the biggest part of why I might want to retreat from my own mawwiage is that I still haven’t fully grasped the concept that my grandmother won’t be there.

I realized just the other day that she died only a month after we got engaged. She had no idea what my ring looks like, she didn’t know where we are getting married, and I never got to ask her opinion on the great beef v. chicken debate. And she will never know these things.

She will be there in spirit, sure, but selfishly, it breaks my heart that I won’t be able to see her smiling and enjoying everything that’s going on. I know she’d love to eat the salmon for dinner (although she wouldn’t appreciate the salsa on top), and would be so proud to see me in my dress, with her beautiful 1930’s beaded purse on my arm. She’d have busted out one of her fanciest homemade shirts for the occasion, and would sit there on top of her walker seat, savoring a glass of white wine and a big piece of chocolate cake, just having a grand old time and enjoying all the people-watching that such a large group will afford.

Just after the last time I ever saw her in her house, I had a strange premonition that she wouldn’t make it to our wedding. It wasn’t a speculation or a thought, it was just a deep, sad knowledge in my heart.

That night, she fell.

It’s taken me the intervening three months to come to terms with what I realized on that day, and I still haven’t completely grasped it. So if I focus on the silly things like getting the invites out, or what hotel we’re getting, or what colors the flowers will be… then I don’t have to deal with the fact that on that day, there will be a huge hole in my heart where my grandma should be.

So you see, I don’t need Prince Humperdinck and his thugs to make me avoid the thought of my wedding day. There is already enough hanging over it for me to want to retreat into my writing and not think about any of it. But as both my grandmother and my old friend from the Princess Bride would remind me…

… really it is all about wuv, twue wuv. And that twuly will be what bwings us togewer on that day.