by Josephine Quiño
Weddings come in different packages. Some can make you smile; some can make you cry; some can make you laugh; but few remain in your heart long after the memories of scents, sights, sounds, touch and tastes have faded away.
One such wedding lingered in my mind for several years now and remained fresh in my storehouses of memoirs. Choreographed by my Mom for my fellow vocalist in our worship team, it was not an extravagant ceremony; but what it lacked in lavishness my Mom made up in style.
The scene is still very vivid in my mind. The bridal entourage glided through the aisle with much grace, and as the last note of the wedding processional started to die down, everyone’s eyes were drawn towards the immaculate bride. There she stood majestically, arm coiled around her Dad’s, ready to be given away. As the next piece streamed through the air, I held my breath, waiting for another magical moment to transpire. You see, every time I see a bride walk down the aisle, I see myself. To my great surprise, instead of taking the first step, she lifted her veil instead, revealing a Boticelli nymph beauty underneath. She then faced her Dad, handed her bouquet to him, held his hand and kissed the back of it, then looked deep into his eyes. “What is she doing?” I whispered to my beau beside me, but he only tightened his hand around mine. The next thing I knew, tears started to seep through the dam of tears behind my eyes. “Sing me a song again, Daddy, sing me a happy verse...”, she cooed, much to our surprise. By the time she reached the stanza that says “Wrap me inside your arms Daddy, though this is not goodbye; Your songs will live forever, in my heart when times get rough; the ones I’ll most remember are your songs of love,” the dam broke. If you are familiar with the song “Killing Me Softly”, then you will understand how I felt during that very moment.
I still don’t know how I made it through the whole proceedings. All I know was that I choked in-between the lines of the wedding songs that I later sang. In that magical aeon, it was not the bride’s teary- eyed Dad that I saw, but my very own. Suddenly, time warped and scenes from my childhood flashed before my eyes, as though from a silver screen. Once again, I was perched on my Dad’s shoulders, holding on to his ruffled hair. Laughter filled the air as I watched the seagulls glide and the waves splashing on his feet. Colorful sails decked the horizons, but none could match the colors that his words painted in the canvass of my life.
I was transported back to reality when the voice of the bride’s father pierced the silence. Though he bravely fought back his tears as he sang “Daddy’s Angel”, his emotions betrayed him. I glanced at my Dad, and as our eyes locked, forever was captured in that brief moment of time. As far back as I could remember, my Dad has been singing songs for me - his little princess - and because of him, I learned how to sing long before I learned how to talk. With tears cascading down my neck like waterfalls down a ravine, I caught a glimpse of my father wiping his eyes. Or was I imagining things? As I stifled a sob, my beau circled his arm around my waist and whispered in my ear, “Let it flow beloved, life is all about love”. I gathered myself just in time for the next song, “From this Moment”. As my fiancé and I started to sing, time stood still.
Ah, weddings. Many are made in heaven, but only a few can take forever.
“Let it flow beloved. Life is all about love.”… Jesus