I’ve spent weeks in a flurry, making my dreams come true. We’ve tasted every kind of cake, tried on every dress in the store. Some might say this is crazy, but to me this is everything. One perfect day to pledge my love, my loyalty, and my future to you.


My mother is in the corner of the room, hanging up a white dress. My bridesmaids pop open a bottle of French champagne and hand out glasses to everyone while they hang up their gowns.

I’ve hidden the dress from you for months now, tradition says it must be a surprise. My sister and I must have gone to 10 stores before I found THE one. Hidden in a dusty corner of a small store, the shop owner said I shouldn’t look at it. It was used, she said. It was very old, she said. Old? No. Vintage! It’s silk and ivory lace and just like us, it has a history. Seeing it now, as my grandmother fingers the lace and declares it good quality, I sniffle and some tears leak out again. I slide on a silk dressing gown and sit down in front of the mirror. I’ve already cried once today, fanning my face to keep the excitable eyes from flowing. Thank goodness I’ve bought waterproof mascara.

Hours later, I’ve escaped the flurry of makeup artists, hair designers, and chatty bridesmaids. I just need a moment alone, so I’ve snuck out to the balcony. Pacing, I’m going over my vows again and again in my head, whispering them fervently so they’re familiar to recite. Then I hear a tiny cough from the balcony next to me. You must have needed an escape, too. You’re covering your eyes so you don’t see me, but I can see that giant smile behind your hands. It’s quiet and small at first, but our laughter grows. Its belly busting, jubilant, and it calms all my nerves. Through your laughter, you tell me that my grand-uncle gave you a vintage hankie; just popped it right in your pocket. He says it belonged to my grandfather and carried it on his wedding day. It’s a profound moment, and I stop laughing only to wipe away a tiny tear. I can’t stop thinking about how many generations of family came before, the perfect storm of love and marriage that all came down to making us. My family means everything to me, and to know that you’re ready to blend your family with mine is indescribable. In that moment, I know that whatever life throws at us we have each other and everything will be all right.

My mother has fastened every tiny button on my vintage gown, feeling her strong hands comforts me. Grandma is in front of me, making me cringe with silly stories about how Grandpa lost his nerve 4 times when he tried to propose to her. They’ve been married for 60 years and she says the first rule of marriage is “Never go to bed angry”. My mom disagrees as she fixes my veil and says the first rule is “Honesty”.

They finally open the doors to the church. My father scoops my arm into his and pats my hand. He leans in and whispers, “The first rule of marriage is ‘Be nice to his Mom.” As we walk down the aisle, I try to look at the guests but… I can’t. All I can see is you, at the end of this little journey. When I reach you, before he begins the traditional speech, our officiant claps his hand on your shoulder and tells us in a hushed voice, just for us to hear:  “The first rule of marriage is “Listen to your partner”. He tilts his head thoughtfully and squints at us. We look at each other and smile. We nod to him, silently telling him we understand, and he begins the invocation. So many rules! I’ve heard so many rules today, but the best part about marrying you is making our own. I see you in front of me and I know, the first rule of OUR marriage will be: “Love. Always, always, love.”

We are now one family. Two halves, full of love, whose eternal promise rings out today. In front of our friends, our neighbors, and our families we have promised to love each other forever, to support each other throughout this life. Two families met today. We leave this place as one.

Contributing editor Meredith Kimberley

It was my pleasure having you here. Thank you for your interest in my works and I hope to meet you soon!

Alona Koenig

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