Misadventures in Motherhood: Till Death Do Us Barf
Weddings are wonderful, festive, life-changing, and occasionally disastrous events. I suppose Forrest Gump's famous line could apply to them, in that you never know what you're gonna get.
I was absolutely thrilled when my best friend asked me to be Matron of Honor in her New Year's Eve wedding, but if I had known what was in store, perhaps I would have asked for some extra-strength Valium to prepare me for the insanity and disaster that was to ensue.
Before I continue I should mention that I use the term "best friend" loosely; I actually have several best friends—each just as dear to me as the others. In this case the best friend getting married was my pal Jen—we'll call her Chiquita (because that's what I call her, due to a high-school incident involving a banana. Just go ahead and let your imaginations run wild here, people).
Chiquita's ceremony promised to be a glittery affair, and I came into the holidays woefully unprepared. If you're a follower of my blog, you're familiar with my typical everyday "mom look," which goes something like this:
It was clear to me (and everyone else) that I was in need of a massive overhaul to properly prepare for Chiquita's wedding. Thus, operation "Pretty-Up the Dumpy Housewife" began.
The first snafu happened when I got my eyebrows done. A previous waxing incident had damaged my skin and caused a cyst, so this time I tried a technique called "threading," which is basically like high-speed plucking. The "threader" uses strings to grab a whole bunch of hairs at once and rip them out in quick succession.
I look quite peaceful, don't I? Actually, I was pretty much gripping the chair with white knuckles, imagining myself on a sandy beach with crashing waves to distract myself from the sensation of having my forehead attacked by a nest of angry hornets. After the procedure, I was left with what looked like an acid burn on my brow and nose. Unfortunately my sister and I still had a bit of shopping to do, so I had to walk around the mall looking like Ty Pennington had enthusiastically attacked my face with a belt sander.
Fortunately the redness was gone by the next morning, and my brows did look pretty awesome. At least I was no longer sporting what my sister refers to as the "Angry Birds" look. According to her, my normal brows resemble the yellow bird. Having never played the game, I have no real idea what that means, but according to her.....
I couldn't let that shit continue for the wedding.
With eyebrows properly attended to, it was time to address my hair. It was dreadful. A stylist had once described my natural hair color as "dishwater blonde," and it's a term I've never been quite able to forget. I didn't want my hair to be the color of a spaghetti pot soaking in Palmolive for the wedding, so I foolishly decided it would be a good idea to color my hair myself, as I didn't have time to get an appointment at a salon.
I popped over to Target and bought a color called "dark blonde" to enhance my natural color a bit and make my tresses a bit shinier. Unfortunately, after waiting the required 25 minutes, I looked in the mirror and was horrified to see this:
It had processed into a dull black. I frantically (and rather violently) washed my hair multiple times but was still left with a deep reddish-brown, which might have been fun under ordinary circumstances, but which was highly undesirable right before the big event!
The previously mentioned extra-strength Valium would have come in particularly handy at this point, as I was just about hyperventilating. I raced out and purchased a lighter blonde color, which I then stayed up until three in the morning carefully interspersing with the darker color to make the whole effect less severe.
The result came out surprisingly good, and when I met the girls at the salon on the morning of the wedding, the overwhelming verdict on my hair was that I should screw it up much more often, because the end result was fantastic. I breathed a welcome sigh of relief, accepted an extremely comforting cup of coffee from my stylist, and settled in.
I chose an updo out of one of those odd books they have lying about in salons, and the stylist went to work. When she was finished, she sprayed the whole thing with "shimmer spray," which caused my hair to twinkle in the light as I moved about. It was freaking fantastic, and I felt like a princess! I dare say I hadn't even felt that glamorous at my own wedding! I was psyched and ready to enjoy the day, and I was sure that all the stress was finally behind me.
I couldn't have been more wrong.
The rest of the morning was all girly-girl fun at the bride's hotel. We primped and preened, carefully applied our formal makeup and admired our gifts from the bride: beautiful satin clutches and bracelets that were so sparkly they were practically seizure-inducing.
Before we knew it we were being taken to the church and the ceremony was underway. It was beautiful and touching, and I proudly stood by my best friend's side, fighting back tears as she exchanged vows with her love.
And then, in the blink of an eye it was done—they were husband and wife, and everyone was smiling and kissing and hugging and congratulating. We were ushered back inside for pictures, and I relaxed in a pew while the bride and groom posed for their first formal photos as a married couple.
I was reflecting upon it all and enjoying the brief down-time when I suddenly started to feel a bit odd. My stomach was a tad queasy and I felt sort of fuzzy in the head. I was also rapidly becoming very hot and uncomfortable.
My husband must have noticed that I looked droopy, because he swooped to my side and began rapid-firing questions at me: "You look like you're about to pass out. When was the last time you ate anything?"
"Um, I had coffee at the salon..." I replied.
"It's three o'clock!" he shouted, horrified. "No wonder you're woozy! You're starving! I knew this was going to happen," he said, shaking his head at me like I was a naughty puppy who had piddled in the corner. He produced two energy bars from his pocket and asked me which one I wanted. I was about to choose one when he shoved both of them at me and said, "Never mind. You need to eat both. And when was the last time you had anything to drink?"
"Um, I had coffee at the salon...." I repeated.
"Oh my God, you're dehydrated. You've been running around nonstop all day! No wonder you're about to pass out! There's a water fountain in the hall. Go out there and drink all the water you can. Eat the bars, get some fresh air. It will do you a world of good." He looked terribly concerned, and I was overwhelmed with love for this wonderfully thoughtful man I'd married—this man who had packed energy bars for me without me even mentioning it, who was certainly ravenous himself but chose to give me the small amount of food he had brought.
I drank some water, ate the bars, and felt a bit better. The bridal party was called in for pictures, and we posed for the usual formals, and also a few cheesy shots where a couple of us kissed the groom (to the apparent horror of the bride), before hustling ourselves out to the limo bus.
Here I am enjoying one of my last moments with the bride before the horror began. As you can see, operation "Pretty-up the Dumpy Housewife" had been quite a success. No "Angry Bird" brows here! Too bad I didn't get to enjoy it for long.