Yesterday was truly one for the books. On a Saturday, five people got up at the crack of hmm-hmmm and got ready (some spiffy-er than others) and got in their cars and drove about an hour and a half down to the Wichita Mountains to Mount Scott. We drove up up up curvy twisty turns until we came to the most perfect spot. Some last minute adjustments such as changing clothes, wrapping ribbon around the bouquet, and finding just the right spot…and a wedding ceremony took place.
Mandrea has been one of my friends for a long time. 7 years maybe? 8?
She was the last roommate that I had, and while I’m known for not being the easiest person to live with (I’m too old to live with someone I’m not having sex with) we hold many many memories close. Our friendship has grown over the years into something more. I love her so much and when she asked me to be the one to officiate her marriage to Ryan, I jumped at the chance.
And I began to read and research and rehearse things in my car and I had the biggest case of nerves because I could never get through any of those things without tearing up. Ever.
Because like all of us, she’s been through the ups and downs of love and life. I was a witness to some of the bleakest moments and it was indescribable joy for me to be there for this one. Ryan has been through those ups and downs as well and for them to have found each other, to have grown with each other and moved forward TOGETHER…well that has been a beautiful thing to watch.
They truly did it right. Just the two of them. Myself as the minister. Mark and the photographer Carrie as the witnesses required by the state. It was maybe about 15 minutes and then we were wiping just a tear or two and popping open some cold Fat Tires to toast the happy couple.
As I was standing in front of them, my voice got thick and wavered a bit. I had flashes of Mandrea and I in our most finest moments, singing to each other, having coffee on our couches in my house, telling each other secrets in the hallway, finishing each others sentences and just laughing until we have tears.
I had flashes of her and Ryan together. They love riding their bikes together. They live loudly. They live and play as hard as their beloved puppies Nova and Jack Monster. I got choked because of all the romancyschmancy crap you see in the media, this was the truest, most honest union of best friends and well..damnit, it was a miracle I made it through without the ugly cry.
I know that at the end of the day, they truly LIKE each other. They always have. Even when there need not be sharp objects around either of them, even when we maybe should have said woah horsey to that last glass(es) of wine, even when there is nothing that can be said the right way and everything said is wrong…they like each other. That’s why when I found this book, I knew I had to read an excerpt for the ceremony.
I like you and I know why
I like you because you are a good person to like
I like you because when I tell you something special, you know it’s special
And you remember it a long, long time
You say, Remember when you told me something special
And both of us remember
When I think something is important you think it’s important too
We have good ideas
When I say something funny, you laugh
I think I’m funny and you think I’m funny too
I like you because you know where I’m ticklish
And you don’t tickle me there except just a little tiny bit sometimes
But if you do, then I know where to tickle you too
You know how to be silly – that’s why I like you
If I am getting ready to pop a paper bag,
then you are getting ready to jump
I like you because when I am feeling sad
You don’t always cheer me up right away
Sometimes it is better to be sad
You can’t stand the others being so googly and gaggly every single minute
You want to think about things
It takes time
I like you because if I am mad at you
Then you are mad at me too
It’s awful when the other person isn’t
They are so nice and oooh you could just about punch them on the nose
I like you because
I don’t know why but everything that happens is nicer with you. I can’t remember when I didn’t like you
It must have been lonesome then
I like you because
I forget why I like you but I do.
So many reasons
On the fourth of July I like you because it’s the fourth of July.
On the fifth of July I like you too
Even if it was the 999th of July
Even if it was August
Even if it was way down at the bottom of November
I would go on choosing you
And you would go on choosing me
Over and over again
And that’s how it would happen every time
I was really excited when I was asked to be a part of this. I had no idea how much it would truly touch my heart.
They did it right.