The project started a month ago in a dressing room at Kohl’s. I should have known that the athletic event of trying on a vast array of Spanx in a tiny, hot, starkly white and mirrored cell would be just a glimpse at the gargantuan project ahead. My husband’s brother’s wedding was no longer just a blurb on the calendar. The day was coming and it was now in big bold letters clinking off the cells in my brain. I had a lot to do and a little time to do it. The first necessity and I mean NECCESSITY – was finding some type of spandex/lycra suit to envelope myself in that would make me look 50 pounds lighter. Well, I’m going to break it to you now, if you are as naïve as I, there is absolutely no such thing. I know there is no such suit. How do I know, you ask? I spent a Sunday afternoon trying every kind of certified fat crammer inner on, and do you know what my scientific study revealed? One can try all day to cram fat into a tight suit, but the truth is the fat is still there and it will find a way out. I believe it should be added to Newton’s Laws: Squinched up fat will find a way out. I bought one anyways hoping that maybe it would smooth a roll here and there. It may have helped, but mostly it caused shallow breathing and nonhuman-like body contortions to slip it off under my dress to use the restroom.
The big day had arrived. My husband and son had their tuxes hung neatly in their closets. My daughter’s dress was ironed and ready. Presents were wrapped and the camera was charged. The morning was uneventful, and the wedding didn’t start until 4pm, so we had some extra time on our hands. We ran errands. My husband busied himself in the garage, and like any husband who busies himself in the garage he entered into the man-project time warp. It must be some kind of time continuum worm-hole that makes an hour seem like five minutes. Nevertheless, you can predict what happened next. I stepped out of the shower and looked at the time. My husband had to be at the church at 3pm. It was 2:15pm, and he was in the garage. I leapt down the stairs in my towel, and with my very best angry wife voice asked, “Do you know what time it is?” There was a slight recognition on his face, like he might see a connection between my nasty question and something important he forgot. So, I decided to reword my question, “Aren’t you supposed to be at the church at 3pm?” Oh yes, that did it, it was like he was pulled out of his time warp safe haven in an instant. The fear, the stress – it was invigorating. I’ve never seen someone shave and adorn oneself in fancy wedding attire in such a small amount of time.
My husband did it. He managed to get to the church with time to spare, but I was left alone with the task of readying my children and myself. The explanation of the next 40 minutes will not do itself justice. I can’t imagine what my neighbors were thinking of what must have been the best free entertainment they had ever had the pleasure of watching. I got my son dressed first. He is three and his attire of choice on any given day is his Toy Story shirt, underwear, and one sock. I’m finally starting to accept it, but I don’t understand it. He was scowling and complaining. At one point he threw himself down in despair. I had to bribe him with a new train. I never bribe. Um, I almost never bribe. The next thing on my list was to find a screwdriver and battery to set up the new train. I couldn’t unscrew the battery chamber. I couldn’t understand the directions, and my armpit sweat glands started overproducing. Then I realized that it did not matter that I could not unscrew the battery chamber, because the only directions I understood were that the train needed a C battery. We had no C batteries, of course. We had AAA, and AA, and D, and the little tiny disc batteries. Ok, crisis number one without a solution – an inoperable train and an angry, bribed three-year-old.
I decided to get my one-year-old daughter dressed next. Easy! Okay, Then I had to cram my big feet into small, delicate, jewel encrusted, high-heeled shoes. Not too bad, but the procedure caused my hair to start sticking to my sweaty face and neck. I got the bags packed, and presents loaded. Next, I placed the kids in their car seats and buckled them in, so that I could finish the rest of my preparations. The dog had to go out. I had to find the dog and make him cooperate. Everyone with a dog knows that if you need your dog to do his business in a hurry he won’t. He will roll in the grass, sniff around, pretend to sniff, and slowly make his way to find just the right spot. He was probably cashing in on a vendetta he had against me for not sharing a snack with him the night before. Our dog took his time. Oh, was the sweat a pourin’!
Finally, when I made my last trip into the house through the garage I noticed the second crisis – the project my husband had been working on so diligently in the garage was now severely damaged. He had been installing a soft flooring which had been punctured nearly a million times by my heels on my many trips to and from the van. I was in trouble, no I was mad, it was not my fault that I ruined the new floor. I needed help, and if he had not spent all of his time installing the floor he could have helped me with the kids and the whole new floor aeration could have been avoided. I also got a great idea from the ordeal that would help me in so many ways. I could charge people to aerate their yards with my heels – in turn I would make some extra money and quite possibly lose some weight and not have to worry about trying on and purchasing fat crammer inners. I decided I would just play dumb when my husband asked what happened to his beautiful flooring.
On the final trip to the van I managed to complete the most death-defying, exciting stunt of the day. Due to our small driveway and my husband’s placement of newly purchased mulch and flowers I had to shimmy past the trash can and air conditioner in my sagging dress that I did not have time to pin. Crisis number three – a tie on the back of my dress caught the trash can, which I proceeded to drag down the driveway as I slid in my fancy, aerating capable, jewel-encrusted wedding heels. I dusted off the front of my dress as it had done a nice job removing the dust off of the side of our van. I detached the tie from the trashcan. I pulled up the gaping wide open top of my dress, and with what dignity and poise I had left, I hopped into the van and slammed the door.
I made it to the church early, sweaty and stress rash covered, but early. As luck would have it my Mama pulled into the parking lot right after me. She pinned my dress, retied my tie, and saved the day like only a Mama can! The wedding was beautiful and the reception was fun. I think for the next wedding we will be showered, dressed, and packed hours before it begins.