I had been given the task of presiding over a friend’s daughter’s wedding, not as a celebrant but as a sort of pre-wedding planner, not of the practical kind, but more one who helps the bride in particular to think about what she is letting herself in for.
I took this task seriously but found myself slipping into the role of therapist. I could sense that my friend’s daughter, the bride, did not enjoy the questions I put to her, questions about what getting married meant to her. She wanted simply to have a good time at the wedding. She wanted only to party, none of this heavy serious stuff about meaning and commitment.
My friend’s mother came up to me. She took me aside and asked me to stop being so serious. It was clear she was angry with me.
Now I felt useless, as if I had failed in my task. I could no longer enjoy the wedding preparations. Somehow the wedding went on and I was not there.
Soon after we gathered for the wedding reception. No one came forward to take the role of MC and my husband moved to the microphone. I rushed up to him to warn him of what had happened to me.
‘They may not want you.’ And sure enough my friend came up to him and asked my husband to tone it down. He went off in a huff.
We were now both alienated.