Thursday, June 9, 2022

Carry Your Hearts: Erin & Mandi's wedding speech

Good evening! I’m Kim, Erin’s exceptionally awesome aunt, and I’m here to tell you all of his deepest, darkest secrets. 

No, I’m just kidding about the dark secrets part… the rest is true obviously.  

Erin & Mandi, Congratulations on finding each other. That’s a much harder thing to do than most people realize. In all of the world, so many things had to go right for you to meet, for that first date to go well, for the world to keep cooperating up ‘til now. You did it! 

As you may know, Erin & I lost his mom & his sister in 2020/21 and that wasn’t easy. I can say with all my heart that Judy and Sara would both be so proud of you and how you’ve handled things in the last couple of years. They would also both offer to fight anyone who stood in your way, and if you ever met either of them, you would know that would have been pay per view worthy. 

A photo I took of the memorial table with the shot of tequila I bought for my missing family members.
Judy & Sara, y'all should have been at my table making snarky comments, dammit. 

Your life has been pretty tough in a lot of ways but you’ve persevered and I am as proud as I can be of you—getting the good job, (taking my and your Uncle’s helpful advice that you should definitely take the leap of faith and step out of your comfort zone.) Not messing up too badly with the lovely bride you’re standing next to now. Again—you did it! 

I knew as soon as I met Mandy that we’d be here today. I could just see that look—you know the look. I’ll tell you a quick embarrassing story: your Uncle Andrew & I have been married almost 30 years now, but you were there from the start. When I first met Andrew and I was trying to play it cool, we took you and your sister roller skating. You were in the back seat and after a lot of giggling, you asked him “Are you gonna be my new dad” and Sara poked you and said “No silly, he would be our UNCLE” and I tried to melt into the seat. I didn’t want him to think I had set you up to ask that question but at the same time, it was pretty good question I also wanted to hear him answer. 

Now I’m going to give you an important piece of advice, and I’m standing in for all of those family members up there who would be hanging out at the back at the open bar if they were here. 

Someday you will be able to stand up at one of YOUR younger relatives’ weddings and tell them you’ve been married three decades if you take my advice: Pick the one trait in each other that you dislike the most. (Mandi—it’s probably something to do with his tendency to lounge around shirtless, hair unbrushed, watching the Cowboys lose...And I know Mandi doesn’t have any flaws so you’re obviously going to have to make those up…. )

But still, take that flaw and decide to love it. This thing they do (like chewing too loud or watching terrible Netflix shows and bingeing on nacho cheese popcorn or whatever) this thing makes them the person you love. They would be someone else without that… this one trick will guarantee you will stay happy. You still might want to smack them, but you will still, at the end of that day, love them and find joy in that one annoying trait. And it’s not always easy, and some days the hard stuff will feel much bigger than the good stuff. But it’s always going to swing back to the good, as long as you can remember this feeling of happiness you are feeling right now. Store this in your heart and pull it out whenever you need to, and that is what will make this all work, even when it doesn’t feel like it possibly can. Close your eyes and time travel back to right now, and trust your heart. 

My favorite from the photos Mandi has uploaded so far. I stole it and I'm not sorry. THIS is the moment I mean.

So speaking of storing things in your heart, this is the part of the speech where you get the “Aunt is a literature teacher” poetry, and at the end of this short verse, I’ll raise my glass and toast you both. This is a poem that wraps up all of my brilliant advice: 

Erin, Mandy: congratulations, you did it!  


1 comment:

  1. Awesome ! I am really Happy I know you ! I love your words of wisdom !