“Can you do me the biggest favor?” I embarrassingly ask my brother’s girlfriend. “ANYTHING!” she replies. “I need Immodium,” I say in in both shame and urgency. The location is my wedding venue bridal suite. The time is 4:35pm, 25 minutes before I am scheduled to elegantly walk down the aisle to marry Ian in front of 197 of our friends and family. Hooray for my wedding day!
When my boyfriend of 5 years proposed in November of 2010, I immediately said yes and two things became the focus for the 11 months to follow. One, I am going to plan an awesome wedding and two, I am going to get skinny for it. The very night I became a fiancé, I sat at my keyboard and googled “wedding planning” because I had no idea where to begin. I knew I wanted to marry Ian but the design of my dress or the flower species I were to hold walking down the aisle were never thought about until the engagement ring was on my finger.
After a lengthy googlefest that went late into the evening, it became clear that planning this beautiful day was going to be hard. Hard and expensive. The most annoying expenses happen towards the end by the way. Five days out- “Oh you actually want us to POUR the wine for your guests? That’s an additional 3 dollars per person.” Three days out- “What’s that? You want forks AND knives? Yeah, there’s gonna be an additional fee.” The day of- “Oh you want to use the air on our grounds to breathe while you’re here? Yeah, that’s gonna cost ya.”
Okay, back to where I started. So it’s 25 minutes until show time and I have bubble guts. My brother’s girlfriend (soon to be sister-in-law!) ran off to do something we haven’t spoken of to this day. The angel got me anti-diarrhea medication.
It’s 4:55pm when she returns, and that’s when I got the call. My friend Jenn was at the hotel where many of our guests were staying, and by many of our guests I mean Ian’s entire family who flew out from Chicago. “Hello,” I answer my cell. “Don’t freak out,” were the first words out of her mouth. I immediately freak out. “What?!” I blurt out. “The shuttles aren’t here yet but don’t worry…” I hang up on her and immediately start dialing the shuttle company. “Hi. It’s my wedding day. I’m supposed to be getting married in five minutes but my guests are still at the hotel and I need to know the status of the shuttle NOW.” I give him the confirmation number only to be told that they have no record of any such reservation. Mind you, I called them the day prior to make sure everything was confirmed and got the A-ok. Assholes. After a few choice words with one gentleman and a few more with others at the company, four shuttle vans were dispatched from God-knows-where and sent to retrieve my wedding guests.
You are waking up at 9am to get ready for something that is starting at 5pm! All science, physics and logic say, you will be ready to walk at 5pm.” I started walking at 5:45pm. It was a beautiful ceremony. There was a lot of Jesus talk. Ian and I were both raised Catholic so a priest officiated and like I said, lots of Jesus talk.
I told myself I would not drink too much at my wedding. I will have a glass of wine, MAYBE two but that’s it. I want to be able to remember every moment and how tacky is a drunk bride?! Well, 3… or 5 glasses into the reception and I’m drunk. My amazing day-of-coordinator pushed me around a la “Weekend at Bernie’s” to where I needed to be so it was fine. (That’s why you hire them by the way- to push you around when you get drunk.) Ian and I are being escorted toward the cake table so I knew it was CAKE CUTTING TIME!
I was over the moon excited to enjoy the Cuban white cake with assorted fillings that Ian and I picked out months before. We proceed to do the hand-in-hand cake cut while the cameras are snapping away. Um, am I drunk or is this cake brown inside? Before I can process the odd color, there is a fork with cake on it flying at my face and I open wide to receive it. AH!!! IT’S CARROT CAKE!! Sober Natalie would have just gone with it. Drunk Natalie made a scene. I begin yelling, “It’s the wrong cake! It’s wrong. It’s carrot cake! This isn’t our cake!” The half-moon of a million people are taking pictures of us while I am announcing that this cake is indeed wrong. Cake scene ends. I walk away from the cake and immediately jet to the door leading outdoors to have a complete meltdown. I’m crying...over cake. $85 dollars in wedding makeup down the drain. Ian and a few of my closest friends are explaining to me in their most gentle way that I am being ridiculous. Eventually, I calm down. My face gets blown on and patted down with tissue by loyal friends, and with yet another wine glass in tow, I’m ready to party.
Twenty minutes of dancing, photoboothing and other wedding activity staples, I am asked by one of the servers if I was ready for “the El Guapo cake to come out.” “Huh?” “Uh, your groom’s cake, the El Guapo cake?” he asked, more puzzled than me. I yell, “THAT IS NOT MY CAKE! WE DID NOT ORDER AN EL GUAPO CAKE!” It became apparent that I was starring in my very own Switched At Birth Lifetime made for TV movie but instead of babies, it was cake. Don’t worry, I didn’t cry because of El Guapo. By that point I was beyond “drunk and emotional” and was happy as a clam in “drunk and over it” land.
For those wondering what happens when a vendor gives you the wrong wedding cake, they give you a certificate for your exact wedding cake redeemable whenever you want. Ian and I cashed it in for my best friend/maid of honor’s birthday party this past October. My parents made me promise to save them a piece. I did them one better and brought them entire top tier. Well, I tried to at least. This happened minutes before I could fulfill the promise.
Was the day a success? I don’t know. Was it worth the money? Probably not. Would I change any of it? Not in a million years.