I married my best friend underneath the waving branches of a weeping willow. It was a beautiful morning. The sun was warming up but a breeze cooled the air. Nature was quiet as if all were watching us. Everything was brighter. I never seen green so green. The water was still. The river was a playground for the kids in Eastly, Alabama but on this day only a family of polite ducks swam by.
We could hear the church bells chime. It was time for our ceremony to begin. Nerves had settled in my stomach earlier that morning. I could feel them making their way to my chest. Nothing was more important then what was about to happen. I don’t remember being happier.
Weeks before Justine, Emily, and I begged our parents to stay home from church. Justine and Emily’s parents quickly obliged, mine on the other hand said no and for the follow days tried to stay firm on their word. After receiving ‘no’ the first time, I pouted and sulked until they gave in. For years to follow, we somehow made it a tradition to stay home from church the last Sunday of summer.
I was determined to go into my fifth grade year married. Justine originally laughed at my idea of a wedding. She was older and going to sixth grade, so I knew she thought my plans were childish. She’d be turning twelve soon and grown out of playing and pretend, but this was real.
Emily, my maid-of-honor, and I planned everything. We would wait until the church service began, the church bells being our clock. I couldn't wait to hear those bells. I never enjoyed hearing them chime as much as I did that day.
I walked towards Justine in white sun dress with purple and blue flowers holding flowers to match. My hair was gelled and perfectly pinned into a bun with purple flowers as a headband. Emily made two; hers were blue to match her blue dress. The flowers we didn’t use to decorate our hair we lay to form the aisle. Nothing could go wrong.
As I made my way down the bank, I could see Emily tap Justine. My heart stopped when she looked up. Her lips slowly turned up to an effortless smile. I was in awe of her beauty. Justine skin glowed like natural honey, dark and sweet. Her brown skin always appeared kissed by an angel but on our wedding day her angelic glow was set on fire. She was beautiful. The yellow dress with a white lace lining fit perfectly. She pinned purple and blue flowers to the dress and two in her hair. She let her long kinky curls hang loose. Something she only did when she was at home. This was a special occasion and I loved her hair down, she knew that.
I was eleven the first time I got married. It was perfect. She was perfect. That day began a new tradition. The anniversary we would celebrate every Sunday before school would start. I remember it like it was yesterday, almost as if it just happened. The sun was out, yet timid. Nature's colors were rich, birds sang, bringing a calm to my nervous spirit. After all, I was getting married.
I wasn’t paying attention at first. Digging my bare feet in the dirt when Emily tapped on my shoulder. I looked up and saw her smile, the smile that befriends all flashing miles of happiness across her face, I smiled. Her eyes lit up. A memory I've cherished. I knew she was the one. She was my best friend aside from Emily, but that's not how I knew. I knew because when she was around, whether I saw her or not, I felt her presences in my heart. I carried her with me in everything I did. My body goes crazy when she is around. My heart flutters, I lose my breath, I sweat, and my hands get pasty. It's a horrible side effect to being in love. My body can't handle itself. When she arrived to our makeshift alter, we both exhaled like we were holding our breaths and was now able to breathe by marrying each other. Emily officiate the ceremony that day. We wrote our own vows. Well, Piper was so particular she had written mine. I didn't mind, she was always a little anal and it made her happy to have everything perfect in her eyes. So I had all intentions on reading them for the wedding but something came over me, I had something else to tell her.
“Piper”, she said. My heart dropped just hearing her voice say my name. I loved her since the first day we met. I knew we were going to be something special. It seems crazy because I was five and she was six, but she was oddly intriguing. Her hair was loosely tamed. She wore these red tennis shoes and a Henley t-shirt. She never grew out of that look, probably would have worn it for the wedding if I let her.
"I never wanted to get married because of my parents, but I'll marry you over and over again. Everyday there is a day and I'm breathing, I'd marry you."
I don't remember what I said but after the "I Do's" Emily said you may now kiss your bride and as Justine ascended to let her lips reach mine. I closed my eyes so tight. My heart skipped a beat. Skipping so much, fifteen years later and all grown up, I open my eyes.
It was magic, that way. How today almost completes what we started that day.
I am today, as I was then, the luckiest girl in the world to be marrying my best friend.