When my aunt Teresa decided to marry her live-in boyfriend of 10 years, my entire family was overjoyed. It wasn’t because we disapproved of her previous lifestyle–not at all–but rather because Teresa’s first husband, Kurt, had been a disreputable fellow if there ever was one.
My Aunt’s First Marriage
Teresa and Kurt married young, just out of high school, and Kurt treated my aunt terribly during the years they were together. He was unfaithful and abusive, and I know it came as a great relief to my mother when her sister finally left him.
My aunt’s wedding to her boyfriend, whose name was Dan, was a chance to finally get it right. My aunt Teresa was, in many ways, the rock of our family-we all thought she deserved to have a wedding day she could look back on without cringing.
My Aunt’s Second Marriage
She went on to have a happy second marriage, but I don’t know if she got the ideal wedding day we had planned for her or not.
Teresa wasn’t a particularly ostentatious woman, and her ideal wedding was a small affair, with only close friends and family invited. She also saw no need to spend a lot of money or to get someone else to make the hard decisions for her.
“This is my second wedding, and I’m a grown woman,” I remember hearing her say. “I don’t need anyone to make a fuss over me.”
She did the bulk of the planning herself, and she put together a modest affair that could, in theory, have been great. Unfortunately, Teresa-who was working full time and raising a daughter-didn’t have much time to do follow-up work, and we foolishly didn’t think to help her.
The venue was terrible. Teresa had selected it based on its rather misleading website, but hadn’t had time to visit. One of my other aunts–the worrisome one, to be fair–seemed genuinely concerned that the terrible landscaping constituted a safety hazard.
On top of that, the justice of the peace got food poisoning at the last minute and a replacement had to be sent. This might not have been an issue had it not been for Dan’s last name, which is incredibly difficult to pronounce. The justice didn’t get it right a single time in the entire ceremony.
In spite of all that, though, and a few other disasters besides, Teresa and Dan went on to have a wonderful life together, and I couldn’t be happier for them.