By Lizette Barretto Gueco | South of Metro |
I heard the usual morning noises before I even opened my eyes and just as the remnants of my feel good dream totally vanished. The chirping of the birds outside my window, the faint noises coming from the kitchen preparing the first meal of the day and Frank crooning Come Fly with Me from my Mom’s cassette player. It was all familiar but somewhat different. Then it hit me and I suddenly sat up. “I’m getting married today!”
I went through my usual morning routine on my last day at my parent’s house. I had breakfast early with my family and talked about the plans for the day. I turned around and caught a glimpse of the last of my worldly belongings, neatly packed and ready to move with me to another house. Everything seemed so final. It made me very emotional but I refrained from crying as I did not want poofy eyes. Not today of all days! I wanted to look fresh and radiant for my date with the rest of my life.
Getting to the hotel , having my hair and make- up done and putting on my wedding gown went by in a haze. People were in and out of my room and I only remember being calm and at peace in the midst of all the chaos. The photographers were there to document each and every detail of my last few moments of being single. My Mom, grandma and sisters were at my beck and call helping me get dressed and making sure all the superstitious pre- wedding rituals were followed. You know, something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue…. My Dad came in as we were all ready to go to the church but he had to fulfill yet another ritual. He put a coin inside my shoe as he slipped it on my foot. He said this was a symbolic gesture to ensure that I will always be queen of my household or something like that. It was silly, he was never superstitious but he did it anyway… for posterity, the pictures, the drama and the memories.
My Dad and I rode together on the way to the church. He took my hand and held it tightly and told me that his whole life was building up to this moment when he gave his daughters away in marriage starting with me, the eldest. Thus, being a father, it was well worth knowing that I was going to be in good hands. His happiness was reflected in his eyes, bright with unshed tears. He said that he was glad that I had found the right man to spend all my days and nights with and he can rest easy. How lucky can he be that instead of being punished for his brash and reckless youth, he was being rewarded for something that he must have done right. He felt truly honored to be the father of the bride. In the confines of our bridal car, just my Daddy and myself in the backseat, I was his little girl once again and I felt safe. I felt his honesty, his pride in me and most of all his love for me all come together in a warm and comforting embrace. It was such a blessing to have been given this rare and tender moment with my Dad. As we got to the church, he hugged me tighter and whispered, “I love you darling! You will be alright. You are your mother’s daughter and I have no doubt you will make the best wife and mother ever. Now go get married!”
He marched me down the flower filled aisle as family and friends looked on and it was my turn to hold on to him for dear life. He was the solid rock I was leaning on so my jelly like legs wouldn’t betray me and give way. At the end of our walk, I had a split second thought of not wanting to go through the whole thing and just go home and be Daddy’s little girl again. Seeing the love and the promise of years to come in my now husband’s eyes, brought me back to the present and to our wonderful future. Yes, I really wanted to do this. My Dad lifted my veil and kissed me lovingly on both cheeks. He successfully pried my icy fingers off his already numb arm and managed, although somewhat clumsily, to put my hand and my groom’s together and held them in his for a moment. He then silently gave his blessings the way we had rehearsed it. Being my funny Dad, he accomplished this all so comically that nobody noticed the nerves and the tears. But I did, and as he walked to take his seat beside my mom, I saw him pull out his handkerchief and wipe them away.
We recently just celebrated our 29th wedding anniversary. We were blessed to have had my Dad for 20 of those years until the pearly gates of heaven and angel’s song beckoned and it was too hard for him to resist. He was not perfect, he had many faults but he was the best Dad and Grandfather I could ever want.
He was right on all counts, of course, of his prediction of my future. I am in good hands. I found the right man to spend the rest of my life with. My Dad recognized that fact from the moment my husband respectfully asked for my hand in marriage over a burger and fries at McDonalds. I am definitely alright and I have become the best wife and mother that I could be.
Now, can anyone disagree that “Fathers indeed know best?”
About the Author
Lizette Barretto Gueco is a contributor at South of Metro. She writes about her life’s passions which are family, home, food, relationships and how they fit in perfectly in her scheme of things and in the circle of life.
Lizette is now a busy home based mom after working in marketing and the travel industry for some time. She also ventured into jewelry design while she was a partner at a prestigious jewelry store at Greenbelt 5. Aside from juggling family schedules and managing the home, she also finds time to bake and sell her sweet offerings from her home as well as indulge in her other hobbies like jewelry making and arts and crafts. She is an amateur filmmaker, traveler, foodie, dreamer and lover of life.
Lizette is a graduate of AB Communication arts from the Ateneo de Manila University. You can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org