I love wedding toasts (even when they’re not for me). I like the ones that make you laugh. I like the ones that make you cry. I like them all.
And the toasts at our wedding were no exception. When Zach and Alvin were finished with their music making, Mr. Whale’s brother took the stage to give his best man toast. I love reading the other blogger’s toasts (did I mention I love wedding toasts?), so for those of you that like toasts as much as I do, you get the full text! You can also watch the toast. (That’s for those of you that reeeeeally love toasts.) 🙂
“Matt, my brother. It’s really hard to define our brotherhood. We’re two years apart, so we spent the first fifteen years of our life doing everything together. Eating, waking up, singing, being dumb, getting in trouble, all of it. …Creating worlds with little characters that maybe only our mother may know about. Sometimes I think we were meant to be twins and I just missed the bus.But we definitely helped – you to me and me to you – define each other. Who we’ve become. Who we will be. I’ve always admired how you’re able to guide yourself through your life and find exactly what you want. It’s just something I’m still working on. But I admire that. And you are part of my soul. There’s no doubt.
Erin, the first time I ever heard your name in a sentence it was my brother saying, “She walked in, and I knew it was going to be trouble.” You’re beautiful, intelligent, funny, and you’re everything he’s ever wanted. And we welcome you to the family.
Anyone who’s ever been in the presence of Matt and Erin knows what their love is, and how sweet and pure and amazing it is. That’s what we’re here celebrating.
I just want to end on a story that comes from October of last year, 2012, when a hurricane was blowing toward the eastern shore. Matt had actually come to town with us to celebrate another wedding. And I’ll never forget when all of the flights back to DC were delayed and shut down. And he realized Erin was back home and he was not. And I remember him saying, “I don’t care if I have to rent a car and drive 18 hours through the storm. I don’t want her to be there alone.” And I remember the look on his face.
Of course, all went well, thank God. And here they are. We love you.”
“For those of you who I don’t know, my name is Leah. I met Erin almost ten years ago when we were paired together to live as roommates in our freshman dorm at Miami University. Now, when you take two teenage girls, away from home first time, and you lock them in a 12 by 15 foot room, you may get one of two things: worst enemies or the very best of friends. Luckily, in our case, it was the latter.
We hit it off immediately. We spent the next four years having dance parties in our room, eating obscene amounts of ice cream, taking midnight trips to Wal-Mart, and travelling the world with our awesome roomies, Katie and Kim. Some of the best times of my life were those with you, Erin.
We remained close, even after graduation when Erin moved to Maryland for graduate school. And we made a pact that if we couldn’t find any good men to marry, we would establish an alternative household, adopt a child from Sri Lanka, and live happily ever after. (This is the God’s truth.)
But it goes deeper than that. And at the wedding today, and when Nick was just up here, they were talking about Erin and Matt’s connection. And I think it’s something that you’ve all seen. But, you know, it’s a hard job trying to explain it in words. And for weeks I struggled to find the words to describe that deep connection, to tell their love story in a way that does it justice. I couldn’t do it. So I googled it.
And I typed in “Maid of honor speech”. And would you believe 843,000 results came up? Apparently I’m not the only one who’s had trouble with this. One of the common suggestions was to use catch phrases like, “To love, laughter, and happily ever after!” But I could see Matt rolling his eyes when I was even thinking about it. And plus it’s way too cheesy and trite for such a unique couple.
Another common suggestion was to tell the groom the humorous things he’d need to know about the bride’s “true nature”, now that he’s going to be married to her, to tell him what he needs to know to make her happy, how to take care of her. Matt doesn’t need that. Matt knows Erin better than any of us ever have or ever will. He protects her. He makes her laugh. And he gives her his unconditional love and affection. For any of us to try and give Matt advice about Erin, it would be absurd.
So, I give up. I guess the best that I can do is say that, everything about you guys, everything about this day is beyond my ability to describe in words. You’re a beauty in that white dress. The way you two look at each other. The gratitude that I have, that we all have, to be a part of your lives. And the joy of seeing two awesome people, who are so completely in love, join together forever. So let’s raise our glasses in a toast. To the things in life that are too beautiful for words. Erin and Matt, I know you will have an indescribably wonderful marriage. There are no two people who deserve it more.”
If you missed any part of this whale of a tale, get caught up here. Previously…
- My underwear was nabbed by the underwear bandit.
- We did last minute errands in Atlanta, then drove to Blairsville, where I had an emotional moment in the courthouse getting our marriage license.
- I got emotional at our rehearsal. Then it was off to bed, where my Ambien caused some unexpected weirdness.
- I awoke on my wedding day, and headed off to get ready with my bridesmaids (and give them some gifts!)
- My braided hairstyle was everything I ever dreamed of.
- After putting on my veil, it was time to head over to where I was getting married!!
- The bridesmaids got dressed, and then I got dressed!!
- I showed off my accessories, which featured turquoise tights, a fab hair flower, and a bright pink crinoline!
- The bridesmaids and I took some super fun photos, and then I took some solo shots. And then the guys got in on the photo fun.
- I squealed with excitement over our wedding video sneak peek.
- The girls feasted on snacks while the guys panicked.
- We processed in, and Mike began our ceremony. We said our vows (which were written on our manatee cards), exchanged rings, and Mr. Whale sang a special song.
- I hugged some people, even though I felt awkward. Then we moved on to family photos.
- The wedding party posed, jumped, and ran! Mr. Whale and I took some pictures together.
- We kicked the reception off with some Montell Jordan and Van Halen! Then we chowed down on dinner and cake.
- We heard some musical toasts and a toast from my dad.