Every little girl dreams of her wedding day.
For all time, in every pretty pink bedroom, a future bride has closed her eyes tightly and pictured her magical day. The 12 tiered cake, the enchanted flowers in full bloom and of course, the whopping great gown. She envisages galloping into a perfect sunset, protected by the strong muscular arms of her very own prince charming. Young misty eyes glaze with the reverie of a glossy white steed carrying a radiant, newly wedded princess to a picture-perfect future of impeccable domesticity and indescribable contentment. That is what every girl dreams of.
I dreamt of being a Borrower.
I yearned to one day be Arrietty and scale a Quality Street. I didn’t imagine wedding dresses, I was far too busy asking the Goblin King to take, in the absence of a little brother, my cat away from me in the vain hope of going to solve the Labyrinth and rescue him. When I wasn’t utterly immersed in fantasy, I was still completely absorbed in the unattainable. I spent most of my childhood (last 27 years) hoping to wake up with even an ounce of the singing, dancing and acting talent I had so spectacularly been born without so I could achieve my West End daydreams. The only white dress I imagined was a pearly buttoned number so I could Lambeth Walk with the best of them.
I never dreamt about a wedding day, ever. And now I’m at ‘that age’, I’m still struggling. Until last year, I’d never been to a wedding. This year I’ve been to three with the fourth just around the corner. By the end of this year, everyone closest to me will be Mr and Mrs. If I’d never thought it about it before, I’ve now been dunked head first into weddingdom. I’ve passed opinion on confetti samples, discussed icing and acted as a wedding cake mediator. I’ve arranged wild flowers in teapots, stuffed petal confetti into homemade cones and scoured the county for 75 metres of urgently required mint green ribbon. I’ve laughed with the serene bride and cowered under the bridezilla. I’ve made “ridiculous” “unthinkable” (!) suggestions that Marks and Spencer make wedding cakes. I’ve seen the best, and worst, of the people I love. I’ve spent the last 6 months of my life talking about little else other than weddings. I smile, nod, tie, wrap, stuff, hang and (brace yourselves) feign interest.
Every wedding has undoubtedly been beautiful and I’ve loved being part of every incredibly special day. But if you need me to hold your glass when the bouquet is being thrown, I’m there. The trouble with all of those surrounding us tying the knot is that the rope is then thrust into our own ring free hands. “It’ll be your turn next” is a phrase me and him have become intimately acquainted with. All marital attention has become firmly fixed on us with photographers numbers surreptitiously slipped into my clutch and venue suggestions casually thrown into conversation. We’re not part of the club and there is an eagerness to get us enrolled asap. I pale (which isn’t easy for someone with a transparent complexion) and in response I undoubtedly receive the head tipped pity smile.
“It’s because she hasn’t got a ring on her finger, as soon as she does…” I hear them think.
“No! No it isn’t! When I grow up I want to have adventures, dance with David Bowie and scale a grandfather clock!” my subconscious wails. And none of this is because I’ve not found my prince charming.
I am sickeningly head over heels with my boy and we’re both comfortable in the knowledge that one day I will I rock a rock as Mrs H. But there’s no rush. I don’t want to take the plunge just because everyone else around us is doing the same. Our day will come but the only meringue you’ll find me with will be a MARKS AND SPENCER pavlova. Maybe I’ve been born without the big white princess wedding gene or maybe it’s just been buried deep and will one day burst out to the sound of the wedding march. But for now, whilst I have loved every stunning gown, emotional ceremony and drunken dance, it’s just not me. Each special day has been personal to the happy couple and every bride has lived out their little girl dreams.
Reader, I want to marry him; I want to be his old ball and chain but honestly, my own personal fairy tale right now is a couple of heartfelt I Do’s and a pub lunch. That way we can get on with the important business and start scaling that clock.