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What happens if your wedding is a traditional, ‘please all the elders’ one, and does not enamour you with its lack of ‘romance’?
Bear with me, because I’m about to spin you a sappy tale.
Mine was an arranged-love marriage, and we did the 3 day Jewelry-food-makeup-million guests thing.
This was back in 2005 and I was a delighted 22-year-old, madly in love and thrilled to be having my dream wedding. My husband however was less than euphoric. He had been raised outside India, so a lot of the customs and rituals didn’t hold the same allure for him. Plus, he felt the whole deal was more about the elders and the Panditjis rather than the two of us.
Now, last year, we were in Las Vegas for a week, with our two kids.
One morning, I’m fixing breakfast in my yoga pants, when there’s a knock on the hotel room door. I open the door to see a large man dressed like Michael Jackson (yes, that Michael Jackson). Now he’s some type of rent-by-the-hour performer and this being Vegas, I shrug and tell him he’s got the wrong room.
He looks me up and down (my Yoga pants and crazy hair) and asks in a curiously soft voice, “Mrs. Raman?”
I nod, surprised.
“Well, this is the correct room then!” With that, he pushes past me and begins setting up stuff on the breakfast table.
10 minutes and lots of humming later, he’s finished. A beautiful little floral arrangement with rose candles lit in aesthetically pleasing rows. The kids are curious (“Is it your birthday, Amma?” and “Wow, can I blow out the candles, Amma?”), I’m confused, but enjoy the bizarreness of the whole thing. Michael Jackson looks over at me and gesticulates wildly.
Understanding dawns. I rush to the bedroom and put on some lipstick. Run a brush through my hair and change from Yoga pants to Fancier Yoga pants. When I come out, the kids are sitting on the couch, agog and breathless.
And next to Mr. Jackson, stands my husband, wearing his best shirt and holding a small bouquet of roses. He’s planned this to a T and looks pleased as punch. Dropping to one knee, he brings out this beautiful ring. This amazes my daughter and in her excitement announces she needs to pee.
We resume the ceremony 5 minutes later. I wipe big tears away, while Mr. Jackson sings us a love song. My husband reads out his vows along with a beautiful Native American Poem about love and commitment. The kids hug my feet, and someone trips over and falls. I don’t know what to say because my heart is so full.
Mr. Jackson asks me if I take this tall and wonderful man to be my husband.
Standing there surrounded by my little family, in a room that smells faintly of pancakes and jam, I find words.
“Yes. Yes, I do,”.
With minimal makeup (one coat of CoverGirl Lipstick + some Kohl) and 3 guests (kids + Mr. Jackson), I got married again to the Love of My Life.
And I’ve never been happier.
A version of this was first published here.
Image source: pixabay
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