25th July marked a special day for my calendar. It was an occasion that was much more significant then Prince William and Kate’s wedding. The marriage took place between my sister, Nat and my newly crowned brother-in-law, Dale. That day was all about the bride and groom, but in this blog, I will make it about me. =)
I have a lot to convey so I have divided the blog into two parts.^^
1. The Build-Up
It’s been non stop since Dale popped the question last year and Nat saying “yes.” The pair of them (especially the bride) worked really hard to organise the whole event.
I had some responsibility and jobs to do. I assisted with the writing of the table plan and printing off the images… I’m pretty sure I had other responsibilities but it has slipped my mind as to what they were. I enjoyed helping whenever and however I could. I did get exhausted though. Sometimes I fell asleep halfway through the jobs. Luckily, I managed to get the jobs done with plenty of time to spare.
I was asked to do a reading for the ceremony too. It was a verse called In That Still and Settled Place by Edward Monkton. I was a bit uneasy at first as I’m aware that I get tongue tied quite easily, especially when talking to new people. I read it and I found it to be much simpler than I thought. In fact I subconsciously memorised it after reading it three times. I opted not to practice zealously as I felt that composure in that moment was more important. I could practice one hundred times but I might get tongue tied on the day due to nerves.
I was told that I could let myself loose and take pictures like a photographer-ninja. Haha. Once again I felt uneasy. What if I got yelled at because they didn’t want their photo taken? I often received reassurance that I wouldn’t get yelled at since taking photographs was common at weddings. My mind was clearer after that.
I was looking forward to the Wedding; my one and only sister was getting married.
2. The Anticipation
A week or so before, it actually dawned on me that the wedding was happening. All kinds of gratuitous thoughts entered my head. This is my Autistic quirks zone where I worry needlessly and anticipate unnecessarily.
Going to this wedding is going way, way out of my comfort zone. Everything would be formal. I would go to a place that I’ve never been before. I was going to read a reading in front of new people. Meeting familiar faces, old faces and new faces all in one setting. I don’t like my friend zones mixing with each other for some reason. I would be wearing a suit; I prefer trendy clothes then smart clothes. And, it’s going to be very, very hot. I’m not so keen on hot weather. They’d be a huge crowd, everything huddling together and stuff.
Admittedly, many of these thoughts made me think ‘I don’t want to go’. The cons really overshadowed the pros. It got me stress and my anxiety did grow. I felt even more anxious for feeling anxious at my own sister’s wedding. It’s quite daft now thinking about it. It didn’t help that I kept going to bed late and waking up early. So, sleep deprivation did play a part.
I then decided at the last minute that I was going to illustrate my very own card. It would have been much easier to buy one, but, it would feel more personal to create one. So, I did. I was fairly happy with the results of my work. It would have been much better had I put a little more effort into it and if I had more time. I knew they would appreciate my creativity regardless. So, all is good. I created a moon in the sky that reflected onto the water, then, I did white silhouettes of the girl coming out of the rose and the guy coming out of the lily. The top bit of the lily I put over the guy’s head so that it looked like a top hat… it looked nothing like a top hat, but hey, it was still fun to draw nonetheless! XD
Being sentimental and affectionate makes me quite uncomfortable and embarrassed. I tend to show affection through back handed compliments. I have this thing, since I was little when I disliked it when people go “AWW”. It really grates on me. I dislike it when that happens so I tend to hold back on the compliments in case I receive that reaction in any way. I don’t know why that’s a pet peeve of mine, perhaps I find it patronising? Perhaps I find it to embarrassing and cringing? Whatever the case, I know that I don’t like it.^^/
However, some things did get me through the cons. someone put it to me like, think about the wedding rather than your worries. So I did, and things became more chilled. I might have said that to myself but regardless I still went with that thought in mind. I listened to Thomas the Tank Engine’s theme tracks; I watched anime and listened to soundtrack of Non Non Biyori. I also looked at the wedding from the bride and groom’s point of view, rather than mine. Things tend to work if I just relax.
There might be scenarios and thoughts that will be the cause of your anxiety, but there will be plenty of remedies to wash away your anxiety. Fortunately, I have many battle plans in place. 😉
Then, came the day…
3. Before the Ceremony
My Dad took my Mum and Auntie to the venue first; then, he came back for me and took me, Bro and his partner to the wedding venue. I was extremely hot. We drove 40 minutes to the place and I wore trousers, waistcoat, shirt and shoes. I took a bag of goodies with me so I could freshen up whenever I needed to. I enjoyed chit-chatting to Bro and his partner; the little conversations sort of took my mind away from my uneasy thoughts.
I got a little nervous getting out of the car. It was blazing hot and to add to the heat factor, I then put my suit jacket on. It was hot in the car, but even hotter outside. I wanted to dive right back into my vehicle. I don’t handle heat particularly well, some of you may know, but I tried to think positively. I put it in my head that the Sun wanted a front row seat to view Nat and Dale’s wedding, so, he popped from behind the clouds and got himself comfortable. Haha…
I didn’t approach anyone; rather, they were approaching me. I posed for a photo or two with some of the crew but I got severely uncomfortable when being touched. It was only around the waist and arms but I do get uncomfortable and nauseous when I get into physical contact with someone. I’m ok if it’s brief, but I quickly tense up if it’s more than ten seconds.
To control my nerves I started to take snaps of random objects and people bustling about. I tried to take quick snaps since my sister informed me to take snaps of people acting natural. I probably took this to heart since I took a good load of people laughing amongst themselves. I tried to take pictures of couples posing but I found it more comfortable to take…what I would describe as sly snaps rather than posed snaps. Haha.
I caught up with a bunch of various people though, enjoyed chit-chatting to them. I caught my hairdresser before she left, nice seeing her. She did the hair of my sister, a cracking job she did too. I caught up with the groom and his groom force. I caught up with Paula, not seen her in ages. Caught up with Damien and Mr Paul. I caught up with… well, a bunch of people really. There’s too many to name but they know who they are. 😉
Taking photos relaxed me, so, I kept on snapping.
I actually promised myself that I was not going to take any artistic photographs at this wedding. I told myself to take normal and refined photo of everyone… as soon as I got snapping away; well… there was no turning back. =D I snapped the lens as much as Ken Shamrock snapped ankles. Haha. Only certain people will understand that reference. XD
I heard a cry from within the realms of the hotel- it was time for the ceremony.
4. During the war… ahem, Ceremony
We all bustled into this tiny room which luckily was full of open doors and windows. I was going to seek refuge in that room earlier, to escape the warmness of the sun, but opted not to. But the lady sort of guided us formally through the entrance of the building which led to the ceremony room. It would have saved time just to skip into that room, but, it was probably more appropriate to go into that room the round-a-bout way. XD
The room was much smaller than I anticipated. I went to my Auntie’s wedding 15 years ago where she got married in a fairly big building. The room was rather long and wide too. Yet, this room was just about as big as the two rooms in my house. I would have felt squashed and uncomfortable but luckily there were plenty of windows and doors open which led to outside. So, things were not as bad as I anticipated. Again. 😉
We all took our places. Since I had a role for the ceremony, saying that verse by Edward Monkton, it was necessary for me to sit at the end of one of the rows. I sat far right on the second row. The head lady talked me through what I needed to do. She was very pleasant. Looked slightly stern so I was concerned that she was going to be old school, but she was very pleasant and laid back to talk to. The registrar was down to earth as well.^^
The ceremony was bliss. Everyone got very emotional, especially the wedding party. =) The Bride and Groom have been together for what seemed like a lifetime so it was a wonderful sight to see them finally tying the knot. It was a formal environment but I felt it wasn’t as formal as I feared it was going to be. The lady was not as stern as I thought. Everything that happened I did not think it would happen. It was all a very strange phenomenon.
Chris then stood up and said his wedding reading on the Groom’s behalf. What he said was most touching, although, I did get a sense that he was severely nervous. He did a good job regardless. And then, the lady proclaimed, looking right at me, “we now have another reading, this time from Ryan.”
I stood up, hopped over Nat’s veil, and stood at an angle. I said the title of the verse but I slightly stumbled on Edward Monkton’s name. I was never concerned about reading the verse itself, I was more concerned about my trousers. I have the right sized trousers by all means but no matter what, I kept on visualising my trousers falling down during my reading. So, for my own peace of mind I bought a belt and wore it. For those who know me, I do not like belts. I find them most uncomfortable, especially when sitting down.
I like to think that I did justice to that little verse. It was very well received by the guests. I received a round of applause but most importantly Dale and Nat looked please.
I tried to read it as poetically as possible, adding my own expression and emotion. I tried to make it more personal. I looked it at it like these were what Nat wanted to say to Dale, so, in a sense I was reading it from Nat’s point of view. Because of how I interpret I wonder if it would have been more appropriate to have a female read it instead. But, really, I think Nat made the right choice picking me since we’re siblings and I’m confident when it comes to reading poems. =)
Nobody probably noticed this but when I was reading I was looking directly at Dale and Nat. Since I felt this was more personal and it was from Nat’s point of view to Dale I tried to direct everything I did towards Dale. I wasn’t ignoring the guests it’s just that I was directing and looking at Dale since it was a verse made to be listened by him.^^/
My brother and Dale’s brother were also the official witnesses for the Bride and Groom’s wedding. It was a nice touch that both my Brother and me were involved of the ceremony.^^/
As quick as that, the ceremony was over as soon as the groom kissed the Bride.
In this time I managed to snap some quite good photos. Everyone was quite impressed. I managed to get a cheeky one where the Bride and Groom walked past the window. It would have been great but Mr Spider photobombed it. D=
The ceremony was bliss and beautiful. So far, I was excited and happy. It was a good day to be Ryan.
That’s it for The Wedding (Part One), stay tuned for part two. 😉