My friends got engaged two and a half years ago.
“Won’t it be strange?” We all said, “Tom will have started school by the time the big day comes.”
And then it arrived: a gorgeous, sunny autumn day in the Cheshire countryside with the leaves on the trees not golden but acid yellow.
At the back of my mind, I thought I might have a man by the time that 2.5 years had passed (at least a man sensible and grown-up enough to take to a wedding.) I had forgotten about this, until I arrived and saw that most of the guests came in pairs. I’m not used to that world.
I’d objected to Tom wearing a suit and wanted him to be comfortable on the day, until my friends asked him to be the Ring Bearer. It became apparent that he would have to have a suit. Luckily, Mum stepped in a bought one because she knew I never would. It was navy blue and nowhere near as naff as I expected.
“I have a very important job,” he kept telling people, “carrying some earrings on a pillow.”
I ordered confetti online and explained to Tom what it is.
“I do want to throw something,” he frowned, “But not confetti. Can I throw golden star glitter on them instead?” So golden star glitter it was.
During the ceremony, I did a reading. When I sat down afterwards, Tom, who was sitting in the row in front, turned around and gave me the double thumbs up and a huge smile. Soon, it was time for the rings. Tom did a brilliant job and looked so thrilled for his beloved Auntie and Uncle. He sat beautifully afterwards, twisting the ribbon on the ring cushion in front of him, then turned to me and said “Mum, look, I have made the ribbon into a love heart.”
As we followed the bride down the aisle, a string quartet played All You Need is Love. Of course, Tom recognised it and piped up singing straight away. And later, when the evening music started, he was on the dancefloor before the happy couple. His behaviour was (mostly) good, the day was happy and it was all good practice for the next wedding we are attending, this weekend (yes, another one.)
There aren’t many decent blokes around (although Anna’s new husband is definitely one of them.) I am turning to a cynic as I hurtle towards 30. Writing the book has got me realising what a silly little girl I used to be when it came to men. Even relatively recently, I still hadn’t learnt, but now I realise it would be good to bump into someone who sits half way between out-of-control and downright boring. At the moment, I haven’t got time for one even if I knew where to find one. No lover’s going to be interested in someone who gives themselves strict word count targets and stays up writing until the early hours, nor a woman whose bedroom looks like a jumble sale because of it. Men and raves are on hold for a bit, the book is all I can devote sleepless nights to.
Fate sent me Tom, so it will send me the kind of man you can take to a wedding. In the meantime, I’ve got an excellent conversationalist who loves his music, is a bit of a romantic and (I have to admit) looks alright in a suit.