So, to carry on from Part 1, our guests had been lined up outside ready for our confetti shot and after about 5 or so minutes someone came to get us. As we walked towards all of our guests all standing holding handfuls of rose petals and our photographer all ready to snap away, we walked through the man-made aisle laughing and trying to avoid being smacked in the eye with a petal or ten! It was a very fun moment I have to say despite everyone’s viciousness! (I told them that too!). It was particularly lovely to see my Nan who looked so excited at finally being able to do this – she’s waited 30 years to see me married.
From that point the photos begun.. my goodness there were A LOT of photos!! I’ve never really taken in quite the amount of photos that the bride and groom have at weddings before so I was quite shocked. It was also a VERY hot day, about 30 degrees which in sunny England, is rather ridiculous! Unfortunately there was also a wasp’s nest on the roof of our venue and so wasps were literally EVERYWHERE that day – so many photos had to be retaken from me screaming and flapping around (now the ceremony wasp made sense). That was rather annoying but I didn’t know there was a nest at this point and thought it was just because it was such a hot day and there were a lot of drinks around.
Due to the issues with my mother and stepfather, I didn’t ask for many family photos, instead we had a photo with each “set” of family – so a photo with my husband’s family, a photo with my Dad’s side of the family and a photo with my mother’s side of the family. Ordinarily we would have both liked more than that, but it was the easiest way of keeping things simple.
Oh I’ve missed a bit haven’t I, let me just quickly go back to the confetti shot… my stepfather (aka the prick) was there and this was the first time me and my husband had seen him since that night last October. He went to say congratulations to my husband at exactly the same time the photographer spoke to him and so it looked as though he had ignored him and he pulled a face and muttered something about him… when my husband realised (like a nano second later) he apologised to him and shook his hand and patted his back – despite wishing he could just ignore him… he did not look happy!! He said congratulations to me but clearly he didn’t mean it. I thanked him but not overly and moved on within a second.
Back to photos, my mother and “her lot” sat quite far on one side of our venue, my dad and “his lot” on another – but my 3 brothers (from my dad’s side) and my sister (from my mum’s side) were all in the bridal party and so in nearly every photo at this point. My dad lingered around a lot and joked about – he actually seemed rather drunk at one point but I was told he was just “high on excitement” haha, bless him. He seemed VERY happy. My stepmum also seemed very happy, she told me how much she loved my dress and how beautiful I looked. She seemed so genuine – they both did.
You may notice there is a distinct lack of mentioning my mother here and that is for one reason only – she was barely there. I mean, she was THERE but she kept her distance the entire day. I barely saw her. I imagine she probably told me I looked nice but I don’t remember it… I also imagine she probably told me she was very happy for me/for us … no actually, I can say with certainty that she did not say that. I have no idea quite where she was during the entire day and evening, I imagine she sat outside in the evening when we were dancing or mingling with guests, but I don’t know. She was pretty much not there. I know that given the background and our current relationship, this is better than her kicking off or causing a scene but it was weird though. I didn’t have time to acknowledge this on the day – its something I’ve thought about more since the wedding.
After what felt like hours of photographs in the boiling sun and wasp city, it was finally time for the sit down meal. We were told to hang back so that all guests could be taken through to their tables and then our MC (toastmaster) announced us into the room as Mr & Mrs. Everyone clapped and cheered and whooped and we walked through them all smiling and laughing, it was great fun. I didn’t look at anyone in particular and I purposely avoided my mother and stepfather’s table.
When we were all seated the food came out, at the top table sat (from left to right) the best man, my husband’s dad, eldest stepson, stepdaughter, groom, bride, youngest stepson, my father and then my husband’s mother. It worked well. My mother who, as you may remember, took herself off of the top table sat at one of the 3 tables in front of the top table but luckily (as bad as this sounds) she was at an angle where I couldn’t actually see her face from where I sat. Unfortunately however I could see her husband’s face and he was one angry man.
By this time I had been made aware of a few things he had said or done and so I knew the mood he was in. His face was pure anger. Just like the time he kicked me out of his house a year ago and just like the time on the train. I really dislike him and seeing him again only reconfirmed that.
Apparently when my husband arrived at the venue in the morning, he saw my stepfather driving in the opposite direction so when he then came back, my fiancé (to break the ice having not seen or spoken to him for a year!) said to him “Was that you I saw driving a moment ago?” and he said… “Yes, I was hoping to ram you off of the road“. I mean wow.
My husband said he ignored that comment entirely and turned to talk to someone else where he then heard my stepfather say (to someone else) “and then I came back for another go!“. What a dick. My sister says this was probably a joke but after everthing that has gone on and after a year of us not speaking at all, and moments before my husband was about to marry me – it was certainly not funny or appreciated.
During the confetti photo he was heard to say “Oh for fuck’s sake, if I’d known it was a family photo I would have stood at the back“. But the worst thing I think was his angry face. I’ve never known someone to look so consistently angry.
After the wedding breakfast, the speeches begun. My Dad went first, I was very excited for this. My dad is very nervous of public speaking and I know he has been worried sick about the speech for about a year now – no exaggeration. He had told me a lot recently that it wasn’t a long speech, but that he meant every word of it. Well, his speech amazed me – and my husband too. It was incredible. He did not look at all nervous, he told the room that I was a beautiful, kind, caring and intelligent woman and that he doesn’t tell me enough how proud he is of me. He spoke about how I am a stepmother to my husband’s 3 children and how much time and effort I spend with/on them. He spoke about how my husband was a great guy with fantastic morals and said that if he could cherry-pick a husband for his daughter, that he would be right at the top. He also thanked him for laughing at his dad jokes. Ha.
I have been told that during my dad’s wonderful speech, stepfather apparently rolled his eyes, laughed sarcastically and refused to clap. Apparently my mother looked like she was chewing a wasp which I quite believe given how much she hates my father.
Next was my husband’s speech where he spoke about how we met, how he proposed, about what a fabulous stepmother I am to his kids (aww) and about how he always feels loved and appreciated by me. He promised he would always love and protect me. It was lovely. Then the best man’s speech which was a great mixture of funny and sentimental, he actually choked up and had to stop speaking for a moment which was very cute. In all, the speeches were just lovely. I felt extremely lucky and happy for the ten millionth time that day.
Everyone raised a glass to us and then clapped for all of the speeches and then my husband’s dad stood up, came over to congratulate and shake my father’s hand for his speech, then before long everyone was congratulating each other – the best man, the groom – I thanked all 3 of them for their speeches and all of a sudden I burst into tears with happiness. That was the first time that day that I had cried. I just couldn’t believe how lucky I was. I couldn’t help but think how differently this day could have gone, how differently the speeches would have been… how I might not have ever felt this way and the strength of that just hit me and the tears came flying out. It wasn’t a hysterical breakdown don’t get me wrong, just a few tears of joy and luckiness I guess.
Again, my mother and stepfather were not around – not that I looked for them, I just noticed their absence then and again now as I recall the day. I can’t help but think that my mother’s envy from how great the speeches were, from how well my husband’s family got on with my father’s family etc would all have been way too much for her. She would have been absolutely seething. Especially as during the best man’s speech he spoke about my husband’s stag do and their little inside jokes with my father – she would not have liked that one little bit! My father also made reference to getting to know my in-laws and even spoke of how wonderful my mother-in-law’s cakes were!! She would have been furious.
After that, me and my new husband were taken off by the photographer for some photos of just us two. We were handed a glass of champagne each and then went off for about an hour. I think the photos will be lovely as they were much more relaxed, the sun was much cooler by now and I’d had a few glasses of drink to relax. The main part of the day was done which was sad, but I felt I could now just enjoy myself. We had photos taken in the fields, in front of a beautiful sunset, with lovely clouds – all sorts of things. By this stage my wedding dress was so dirty but I just didn’t care – I didn’t want to worry about a bit of dirt on my dress, I just wanted to really make the most of every second and I am so glad that I did. Funnily enough when we got home the following day and I shook my dress out to hang up, a beetle came out! LOL!
When we got back from having those photos it was time to cut the cake and have the first dance. Our first dance was to a song called “My Best Friend” by Tim McGraw. It isn’t a particularly popular or well-known song but we loved it. As cheesy as it is, the words truly do sum up how I feel about my now husband. Neither of us know how to properly dance and so we just kind of cuddled and moved from side to side as the song played. It went really fast and before I knew it, the DJ welcomed other couples to come and join us on the dance floor. When I turned around to see who was coming, my new mother and father in law and my stepkids all ran towards us and I burst into tears again!! There was something about that moment that really hit me. I know (again) it is very cheesy but it felt like my new family were walking towards me or something – I’m not sure. It was lovely and everyone was (playfully) laughing at my sappiness.
From that point the night just flew-by. The evening guests arrived about 7pm and I barely saw them. I remember however, being at the bar stood behind my (angry) stepfather waiting to get myself a drink and he turned around, holding his drinks and just totally ignored me and walked past me like I didn’t exist. I remember thinking then, that could have been his chance to say something. He could have said I looked nice, he could have said he is happy for me.. that he is sorry about how he treated me this past year – anything really. But he decided to blank me. I think that sums him up as a person.
I think I had a few too many wines because all of a sudden we were being told to get into the car with our bags and taken to the special “hideaway cottage” where we would spend the night. I don’t even remember saying goodbye to anyone!!!
When we arrived at our hideaway cottage, it was dark and so we couldn’t see the surroundings but the actual place was lovely. It was much bigger than we had imagined and had a fully kitted out kitchen, bathroom, lounge area and bedroom. We were both shattered and clearly not going to be doing any cooking and so we went to bed straight away.
In the morning I was woken by my alarm but my husband(!!) was wide awake and playing on his phone – tracking bloody aeroplanes that were flying over us because he is a plane geek LOL. He seemed very happy, as was I. We both giggled and laughed and looked at our wedding rings. It was all so surreal!
We got showered and dressed and then I saw a message on my phone from my mother. I knew what it was going to say before I even opened it. It said that she had gone home “for the dog”. It was sent at 6.50am.
I was not at all surprised and told my husband. He seemed utterly furious and just shook his head. He said “I think that’s it now darling”.. meaning he doesn’t think me and her will ever have any kind of relationship at all now the wedding is done. He seemed very worried for how I felt but I felt fine. I utterly refused to let her ruin a single second of this special time. He was definitely more angry than I was! I didn’t reply to her message, just read it and closed it again. I wasn’t at all surprised that she had left early. I wasn’t surprised she didn’t want to congratulate us again or say goodbye or anything else. Given the way she acted during the entire day, it really wasn’t a shock.
At 9am we were collected and driven back to our venue where we walked into the breakfast room and all of the guests that stayed were waiting for us. As we walked in they all clapped and cheered us again and I laughed and (probably) went red. The kids were there, my husband’s parents, my dad, stepmum and brothers and their girlfriends. It was lovely and do you know what? the absence of wasp-chewing mother and angry bear stepfather was a blessing because everyone was relaxed. Everyone was chatting and laughing together, there was no separateness or awkwardness.. there was no tension or worries. It worked out well.
I told my Dad and stepmum about her text and they both looked surprised and rolled their eyes in disapproval. They both kept telling me “don’t let her get to you today, this is the happiest time of your life”. I told them I was genuinely fine.
Part 3 coming next…