We arrived at the wedding venue a full 20 hours before the wedding ceremony complete with a first readybed, an entire farm of plastic animals, 3 teddys and 3 plastic cars (note to self – ratio of animals to cars completely wrong for my 2 year old – next time pack at least 20 cars and move into hotel at least a week before the wedding takes place thus allowing for several trips back and forth to our flat!). I also had the most wonderful brain wave about bedtime to ensure a most relaxing start to the day on the ‘BIG’ day. Jack goes to bed at 7pm therefore if I kept him up until 10pm – 3 hours later than his actual bedtime then of course he would wake up 3 hours later past his usual 5am start time in the morning! This highly scientific study has proved conclusively that (pardon my language) is complete and utter bollocks!!! It makes NO difference WHATSOEVER! Son went to bed at 10pm and then as if someone were flicking a light switch on, his internal alarm clock went off at 5am on wedding day and he was good to go. Words cannot describe the look of horror on my face and my wonderful husband, realising that wife was simply not able to cope with this revelation, dressed both himself and Jack and went for a walk to the local Tesco store at 5.30am in the morning during a horrendous downpour giving horrified and cranky wife an extra hour and a half in bed. Angel!
To say I was on edge throughout the morning was a bit of an understatement. Hair and makeup were the least of my worries, my first concern was how to convince toddler to take his nap an hour early so he would be awake in time for the ceremony so my brilliant plan of sleeping actually did turn out to be brilliant, by 11am Jack was exhausted as he had missed out on at least 2 hours sleep and snuggled himself down nicely with teddy in his Thomas the Tank bed. By this point I had had my hair styled and was pinned to within an inch of my life, I tried to nap myself but the combination of several pins embedding themselves into my scalp and getting pins and needles in my arm trying to protect several curls from dropping out led me to give up and in the absence of anything else interesting to do, I went to the loo. Needless to say I was less than pleased when housekeeping decided to let themselves into the room with Jack fast asleep and me quite literally with my knickers around my ankles – at this point I realised I was going to have one of those crummy mummy days!
During the next hour and a half I took the time to do my makeup and ask my Mother to help shoe horn me into my dress and seriously she was one step away from putting one foot on my backside and pulling the laces on the dress as tight as they could go. By the time she was done and I was in the dress I wondered how I was actually going to breathe and switched from my sparkly heels into a more practical gold slip on shoe – my thinking being to protect my ankles for when I passed out through lack of oxygen later on.
I waddled back through into my own hotel room where a sleeping Jack was being looked after by my Dad. I threw open the curtains, turned cbeebies on and screeched ‘Darling!’ to my sleeping cherub ‘Time to get uuuup!’. My toddler who normally doesn’t like sleep opened one eye and then closed it. Shit. I looked at the clock, Jack was due to be downstairs in 15 MINUTES. I turned up cbeebies, ‘Jack look its Mr Bloom!’. Another eye open. Jack looks at me disapprovingly, grabs his teddy and turns away from me putting his bum in my face. Double shit. I then proceed to take the clothes off a floppy and uninterested child all the while panicking that my dress laces were going to pop open and watching the clock as the minutes disappeared. ‘Please Jack!’ I wail with my Mary Poppins cheerfulness turning more into shrill panic. Jack sits up for a moment and smiles gently then say ‘no’ very quietly ‘night night’ and then flops back on the bed. AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGH! At this point my wonderful parents arrive and offer to take over while I meet the bride and my hubby downstairs to start the ceremony.
Son arrives downstairs 15 minutes after that all prepped and ready to go for the wedding. Now let the fun begin….. this was the bit that I had been dreading. Of course not to watch my lovely sister in law and brother in law tie the knot but praying and hoping against all hope that my 2 year old was going to play ball. I was to walk Jack and another little boy closer to the age of three down the aisle. The door opened, I took both boys and held my breath. The whole time chatting to them and willing them both to make it to the front of the room without incident. Of course I hand’t even considered the other page boy and just over half way down the aisle he decided he was going to take a fake trip and literally dived onto the floor! My jaw hit the floor as I hadn’t prepared myself for this eventuality, the guests of course saw the funny side and my clever Mum had chosen an aisle seat so scooped little Jaidee up on my behalf (remember I am popping out of my dress still!) and we made it to the front! Phew!
The experienced registrar was clearly very knowledgable about young children and so took the time to obtain teddy from my parents so thankfully Jack and teddy were reunited and Jack sat sucking on his best friends ear for a good half of the ceremony. However half way though the vows he saw fit to remove teddy and announce ‘OH NO!!!!’ to the room! Again the guests giggled and I blushed and smiled hoping that was going to be the end of his outbursts! Other than a minor crying moment when all the guests clapped (he wasn’t prepared for the noise and he got spooked) and when he decided that he and Daddy shouldn’t be wearing flower button holes and removed them by force. He was then content to ‘feed’ the petals to his teddy making quiet ‘num num num’ sounds.
To get him through the photos we used cookies and toy cars as bribery and for the meal he was content to work the room rather than sit and eat much although even Jack couldn’t resist the lure of chicken goujons and chips! He gave his own speech from the top table announcing that he ‘likes dancing!’ as he boogied to the dj’s background music and that he ‘likes tractor’ upon receiving a beautiful engraved tractor from his Auntie and Uncle. He was set for the disco and was first on the dance floor!
My parents were also guests at the wedding and were also staying the night so they kindly offered to let Jack sleep in their room so we could stay out a little later (we made it to 11pm before we conked out!). All in all I was so proud of Jack, at 2 it was a massive day for him and he handled it in true Jack style! A brilliant and beautiful day and we are so blessed to have been a part of it. As the groom said in his speech to the page boys Jack and Jaidee, ‘thankyou for making it memorable’ which was received with giggles and smiles. Love you little man ❤