the morning was grey and quiet and rainy.
i expected that weather. my friends had spent the previous week assuring me that rain on your wedding day was good luck in some cultures. nobody could remember which culture.
i didn't care. i was happy and calm and ready for the day.
there was hair and makeup. a flurry of activity when the limo driver pulled up to our house and i was still not dressed.
my mom helping me with my dress and veil, stepping back to look at me, and beginning to cry.
"no crying," i told her. then, "i love you."
at the church, there was a critical mass of my bridesmaids already assembled, all beautiful. there were bouquets of roses and calla lilies distributed and pictures taken. when joseph and his family arrived at the other side of the church, everyone made sure that i was out of sight.
just before 2PM, we were ushered to the front entrance of the church. i was whisked to a side room with my bridesmaids, my precocious flower girls, and my dad. i wondered why there was no music.
but then the organist began to play canon in D, and, one by one, my bridesmaids made their way up to the altar. finally, i heard the wedding march begin, and my dad took my arm and led me to the end of the aisle.
that wedding march was, in a way, like watching my life flash before my eyes. i saw the aunts, uncles, and cousins that i grew up with; there were my closest friends from high school; friends from my undergraduate days at stanford; and my girlfriends from grad school in texas. all of these people from those various stages of my life, those people i have carried in my memory and in my heart, all there to witness this next stage of my life.
and there was joseph at the end of the aisle.
there were scriptures and prayers, the presentation of the lazo, arras, and the bible. we exchanged vows. we received blessings. and then we were married.
the priest announced that joseph could "kiss the bride." and he did. three times. the priest exclaimed, "or you can kiss her three times!" our first three kisses as husband and wife.