I am so glad to be home.
For the last five days we have been in Southern California being a part of a friend's wedding. A few months ago my friend got engaged and asked me to be a bridesmaid. Happily, I agreed. Then she told me it would be a destination wedding. First it was in Miami, then Cancun, then in their backyard (this one I was happy about--we live three miles from them), and finally they settled on Laguna Niguel, California. With all of these changes, I was still in.
As the months rolled by, there were a series of parties and get-togethers but because of my photo booth schedule, I was unable to attend any of them. And honestly I was conflicted about all of it. For her this was a second marriage. I wasn't sure what was protocol for a second wedding. If she was having a second baby, for instance, there would be no baby shower. But because I missed all of these events, I did not get to know any of her other friends, especially others in the wedding party.
This was a mistake. After we arrived in Laguna there were several events planned for the wedding party. First we spent a day at the beach together. They drank mixed drinks. I drank water. They wore their TINY bikinis, I wore my two-piece TYR. After the day at the beach, they all went to the bachelor/bachelorette parties. I went to bed early to get up to run in the morning (yeah, you read that right, Liz). The next day there was what we dubbed "the opening ceremony." A wine tasting with even more people in attendance. We got to meet some more friends of the family who we really grew to enjoy, yet I didn't spend any time with the other bridesmaids while they continued to become better friends. Finally it was Friday and time for the rehearsal and dinner. Dave and I were the first ones there. As more people continued to file in, we got lost in the shuttle. At one point I saw the bride pick up her phone and begin dialing. I said to Dave, I bet she's calling me. Sure enough she was, and yet I was not even 5 feet from her. I was truly feeling invisible this weekend. And the misery continued. As we walked out to the ceremony site, one of the girls said, "where's Meredith?" I was walking right behind them. They said I looked "different." Thanks for that compliment. At dinner I drank. How much? Too much. We made it home just in time for me to toss my cookies several times. I woke up Saturday dizzy, hungover, and still nauseous.
Finally it was Saturday. Time for the wedding. The wedding was at 6:00pm, but my day started at 9:45am. That's when the bridesmaids had to report for duty. And because I was the ugly duckling, I guess they designated me to go first. I had my makeup and hair done. At the end of it I looked like a movie star. Honestly. I was sitting on the couch when I noticed one of the girls staring at me. She looked at me, looked at the magazine, looked at me and said, "you look just like Zooey Deschanel" while showing me the cotton ad. Yep, that's what I was going for. For hours I sat with my hair and makeup done in silence. When I tried to join conversations, conversations would change. When I walked into a room, the other girls would disburse. I just wanted to go home. The wedding took all of 5 minutes. No lie. The reception was a huge dance party, something I do not partake in, but I didn't know how long my role of bridesmaid needed to continue. Finally at midnight I was tired and was ready to go home. I said my goodbyes and was happy to know I could go back to being myself.
There were good parts of this trip, though. I did all of my training while I was there, including a 15.35 mile run with jeff which may have been the easiest 15 miles I've run in a long time. Dave and I also had lunch with Marit and Nathaniel and really enjoyed hanging out with them. We met my aunt and uncle for coffee and breakfast, along with meeting some of their friends. My aunt and uncle are so cool and so were there friends. Definitely a highlight of my trip. Dave even got to go to the beach with them, while I was playing bridesmaid, and work on his body surfing.
And now a few pictures. Seriously, you will never see me looking this good again.
Guess which legs are mine?