I hate looking at pictures of myself.
It comes second only to listening to my voice on the answering machine in the line up of cringe-worthy activities-to-avoid-at-all-costs.But when I came across this Writing Challenge: tell the true story behind the picture of a smile, I knew immediately which story to tell.
Because I remember exactly what this little girl was thinking in this moment.
I’m so glad to see you!
You look great.
In fact, you’ve never looked better to me!
I’ve missed you! I know it’s only been a day, but what a day.
I have so much to tell you. Nothing seems real until I tell you.
Have you seen my Grandma’s hat? All blue feathers. You’re going to laugh. But try to be cool. She’s awfully proud of it. It’s cute.
Guess what we did last night? My cousins and I pulled out Mom’s wedding gown and her bright yellow bridesmaid’s dress from Aunt Lois’ wedding. We tried them on and looked at pictures and giggled like crazy.
I couldn’t eat at all this morning, I was so nervous. And I just wanted to talk to you and I needed you to hold my hand and make me laugh. But I sucked it up and pasted on a smile and tried not to throw up.
Everything feels right again now.
You always make me feel better.
I have so much to tell you. It’s only been a day, but what a day.
There are so many people here. Our whole gang from highschool is here. I even saw some friends we haven’t seen since graduation. Did you see Jason? He looks like a movie theatre usher. He’s wearing a bright red suit jacket. Of course he is.
There’s family here I haven’t spoken to since I was little. Yes, I consider third and fourth cousins family no matter how much you roll your eyes.
Also, it’s weird to have your parents together under one roof, isn’t it? But everyone seems pretty happy, so don’t start getting stressed.
There was some kind of problem with the decorations. And you’d think that kind of thing would make me nuts – you know how I get. But after all the planning and the choosing and the fussing and the debating and the detailed schedules with each person’s part carefully highlighted, I don’t actually care about any of it.
I’m just SO glad to see you!
Can you believe we’re doing this?
I’m trying to pay attention now.
Come on, Christie, get it together.
Mostly I’m waiting until we can leave. And it can be just us again.
Just us from now on.
Just us forever.
It’s only a day, but it’s OUR day.
I’m so absurdly happy that I get to keep you!
So here’s me, still a grinning-like-a-fool bride. That cute boy is still my best friend. And as I’m sure you can imagine, he does a lot of listening.