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The Wedding That Wasn’t

Yes, this is what was on my wedding cake.
Yes, this was the picture on my wedding cake.


Very shortly into our relationship, the Smizmar and I both knew it was a forever kind of thing. That scared us both to death. In fact, it took my dearest Smizmar almost seven years to actually propose, thus earning him the nickname (that he can’t stand) “Inertia.”

Getting married wasn’t actually a priority for us. We both knew the other one wasn’t going anywhere. Then, when I was working graveyards, I woke up to an empty house. He ALWAYS left me a note, or a voicemail so I had a hard time figuring out what was going on. Even though I was his emergency contact, I had to channel Godzilla to get the hospital to finally admit that he was in the ER. I flew across town to the hospital and found that he had a collapsed lung. That he had one for his full shift at work and then went to the walk in. That was one of the most stressful times in our relationship for me. I am usually the one in the hospital and I sure didn’t like the tables being turned. Then came another crushing blow. Because we had never entered into a legally binding contract stating that we were together forever, I wasn’t able to get FMLA while he was sick. That decided it, we were going to get married.

I was never the type of girl who pictured my wedding. The thought of standing in front of 200 of our closest acquaintance, in a white dress and tux, declaring our love to people who should already know how we felt about each other seemed a pointless spectacle. The idea also made the introvert in me want to pull a Gauguin and leave all those people in the dust. Well, I may have still taken the Smizmar… I was rather fond of him.

We decided that we would just sign the papers and go to a nice dinner. My family had recently weathered some large losses, and even though it was going to just be a quiet thing, we couldn’t tell my parents that they weren’t allowed to come.

The “big day” arrived and I went and got a pedicure with my best friend and momma. My Smizmar was taking his best friend out to do… something…

We go to my friend’s house, we signed the papers, and then the Smizmar handed my mom a small box with a ribbon. She went to hand it to me and he said, “No, Mom, that is for you.”

I was a bit miffed that my husband of two minutes was giving my mother something before me! I watched as she opened the box and pulled out a wooden duck. She looked at it in puzzlement and then comprehension flooded her as the tears flooded her eyes.

My mom is from Korea. Many many MANY years before, I had told my Smizmar how when a couple gets married in Korea, the groom gives the bride’s mother a duck. Waterfowl mate for life and it is a symbol that he will take care of her daughter for life. I had completely forgotten. He hadn’t.

I wasn’t there, but apparently this is really close to what happened during his final bachelor hours.

“Hey, I have to buy Jenn’s mom a duck.”

“Why are you getting your mother-in-law-to-be a duck?”

“So that I can make Jenn’s mom cry.”

The duck that made my mom cry. It is proudly displayed in her large china cabinet.
The duck that made my mom cry. It is proudly displayed in her large china cabinet.

My mom has always loved him and she is constantly telling me how lucky I am to have a husband like him. I am not a lucky woman! I am a BRILLIANT one because I hand picked this man to be my husband forever!  We may have our disagreements, however, I know this man loves me every day… so perhaps I am a bit lucky.

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