1 year ago…

It’s amazing that the things I worried most about for the wedding were the things I didn’t even notice on the day. The things I remember the most were the things that weren’t planned at all.
Like having a 5 guys burger with my best friend before everyone started arriving- and the look on my moms face an hour later when I told her.

How cute my nieces were.

The look on my moms face when she was reading the book I gave her that morning.

How much fun it was sitting around talking to my mom best friend and sister and then my college friend Emily.

Having to pee precisely 5 minutes after putting my dress on and the exasperated look my mother gave me when I told her I needed to pee about 2 minutes before the wedding started. Seriously I don’t think she had looked at me like that in 27 years- it was like we had just been stuck in traffic for hours and finally gone three miles on the open highway and I asked her to pull over. 

Getting butterflies of excitement in my stomach hearing the first few lines of sweet disposition knowing it was all starting…

Hearing my mom walk down the aisle and getting more applause than I did

Putting Gary’s ring on the wrong hand and then giggling at the jokes my uncle made during the ceremony that only we could hear.

Gary squeezing my hand as we walked back up the aisle- and literally squealing with delight seeing that my best friend from school was pregnant.

Having a moment in the car where I thought- “omg We just got married!”

Having tourists call out congratulations when we were getting our photos taken at the Lincoln memorial- and laughing at the kid who was grossed out by us kissing in front of the Washington monument. Our laughter was definitely caught on camera!

These Moments were what made the day so special. 

It was laughing and crying during the speeches- and actually being quiet for once and not making a speech. It was doing our first dance last and wearing flip flops all night because my beautiful custom made shoes killed my feet!

It was photo booths and glow sticks- lots of glow sticks. And everyone dancing to that silly song my mom made me promise that the DJ would play. And having a great time but not eating dessert but loving the cake!

It was kicking on at the bar after with all of our siblings and Irish and Aussie friends– and running into a girl I went to middle school with! 
It was staying up until 5am drinking champagne in our hotel suite, and then waking up the next day to do it all again.
It was going to the DC courthouse on Monday and waiting in a room with so many others waiting to make it official.

It was the little propeller plane that we took to San Pedro and Meeting family in Belize for The first time. It was swimming with stingrays and finding hidden Mayan cities. And sitting at the spit drinking Beliken beer and having lobster for three meals one day and drinking Belizean rum on the balcony in the afternoon. It was hopping on and off around LA and seeing robin Williams’ star covered in tributes. It was Santa Monica pier and seeing the white men can’t jump basketball court while you were wearing the white men can’t jump t shirt in Venice beach.

It was coming back to Sydney and celebrating all over again with our friends here. It was changing my drivers license and my passport. It was the first card we got addressed to mr and mrs. It was trying to figure out how to shorten my newly hyphenated name at my new job. 
It was a million other things in the last 365 days that made our wedding day so special and such a great day. I couldn’t have planned before all the details that make looking back on it so wonderful now. I can’t remember who sat where, I haven’t made the guest book or wedding album yet but I smile every time I think about it and every thing that’s happened in the past year.

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Anniversary.

1 year ago yesterday I was hosting our annual Thanksgiving party.

1 year ago today I got a call telling me I needed to come home- my father was on life support.

1 year ago tomorrow I was sitting in Sydney airport when my sister told me he had died.

5 years ago on Wednesday, The Runner and I met at a mutual friend’s birthday party.

This year, in many ways, has been by far the worst I have been through- losing my father is something that I will never ever fully recover from.  If the past year is anything to go by, I will think about him every day and I will miss him every day for the rest of my life.  When you lose someone, they’re never really gone but it’s hard getting used to them not physically being here.  It’s been a difficult year learning that.  I can’t believe it’s been a year.  It’s surreal and sad and somehow seems really final.  Death is always final but it’s hard to believe it’s true. I’m sure the first year is the hardest- or at least I hope it is, so in some ways it feels good to have survived it.  It doesn’t make it easier but it feels like an accomplishment to have survived relatively unscathed.

On a different note, I also can’t believe it’s been 5 years since The Runner and I met.  5 years.  Half a decade, wow.  The last 5 years have been amazing in a lot of ways- it’s hard to argue that I’ve had a better set of 5 years (well, unless you count College but that was only 4 and it was a different type of amazing!)  I’m really lucky to have him in my life and if anything’s gotten me through the past 12 months, it’s The Runner and his support. 

So this week is pretty crazy- I’ll be celebrating the high and mourning the low. 

I’ll also be keeping myself busy with my new job and of course, planning our annual Thanksgiving party.  I keep saying it’s going to be far more low key than years past but having finally organised the menu actually doing some of the shopping today, I’m not sure if that’s true.  It’s definitely not true actually.  It is more geared toward finger food (which is actually more work than big dishes- doh!) and more of a BBQ.  This year’s menu:  Black Bean Dip, corn casserole, mini mac and cheese, caprese bites, mini sweet potato pie, mini pecan pie, and mini pumpkin pies.   Plus, turkey sausages and burgers on the BBQ.  Hopefully the weather cooperates…. Either way, I’ll be thankful to everyone who comes and thankful to everyone who has supported me this year and helped me- it’s been a tough year but the amazing friends and family around me have made a world of difference and I truly am thankful for them.