Five years ago, I woke up on an unseasonably warm and humid Saturday, went for a run, and then headed to the Dedham Hilton to get ready for our 6 p.m. wedding.
I’m a *bit* of a planner, but — in my opinion, at least — I kept at least some of my Type A tendencies in check when it came to the wedding. Yes, I had a timeline that went down to five-minute increments. Yes, I spent many hours looking for just the right font for our table numbers. Yes, I put together a detailed list of formal pictures for our photographer (an approach that other brides have copied, thankyouverymuch).
But I didn’t freak out when the flowers didn’t make it onto the cake the right way, or when my dad somehow forgot his tux jacket back in Walpole, or when the crazy Jimmy Buffett fans in the hotel ransacked the bathroom baskets my mother had put together. I didn’t even notice when the sky turned dark just before the ceremony. After all, I’d just kept telling myself, “all that matters is that we’re married at the end of the day.”
And then I forgot the marriage license.
The cake turned out fine. My brother drove home to get my dad’s jacket. We missed the thunderstorm by minutes. Technically, we weren’t actually married at the end of the day. Oops. (Thanks, Father Tom/Kenny Rogers, for being willing to backdate that license when you got it.)
That was just the first speed bump we’d hit in our married life, and I’m glad to say that we laughed it off and then poured some champagne.
It hasn’t been quite as easy to clear every hurdle since then. Some days — some weeks, some months — have featured more tears than laughs. Some have called for drinks stronger and less celebratory than bubbly.
Five years later, here we are. As I look back, I realize that those dark days helped create the contrast that’s made so many others so bright and Ballatore-worthy: fancy, formal days when our brothers and my sister got married and lazy Sunday mornings spent in pajamas with coffee, munchkins, Clarence, and Meet the Press; the night the Sox won the 2007 World Series and Stephen Strasburg’s first start; a morning in the Sistine Chapel and an afternoon driving around the battlefield at Gettysburg.
And now we’re on the verge of the best reason I can think of for a toast.
I’m excited to see what the next five years bring. Not every day will be easy, but I’m confident that sharing them with B and the Player to be Named Later will make them rich.
I know there will be laughs.
And I can be relatively sure that there will be some champagne.