|maid of honor speech.
||[Jul. 31st, 2010|12:34 pm]
today, my best friend in the whole world is getting married. here's the speech i'm going to deliver:
Hi. I’m Erin, and I’ve known Irene since 1983. She was my very first friend. When Irene, Steven, Mickey, and Kyung showed up on our doorstep to introduce themselves when they moved to Wagonwheel Way, I was only 3 years old. I’m pretty sure Irene offered me a plate of cookies and I’m pretty sure I immediately hid behind my mom’s legs. I couldn’t have imagined that the pretty girl dressed in pink would also become my very best friend in the whole world.
To know Irene, as trite as it might sound, is to love her. I don’t have to tell all of you that she is one-of-a-kind. You showed up to celebrate one of the most important days of her life with her, so she must hold a very special place in all of your hearts too. You know how kind she is, and how funny. How smart she is, and how quirky.
Well that quirkiness has roots. Growing up, Irene was more than just my bff. She was also my big sister. And like any good big sister, she taught me a lot of interesting things – like the delights of kimchi-and-mayo sandwiches on wonderbread, the virtues of pickles for breakfast, and how to incorporate pink into any – and I do mean any – outfit.
She introduced me to the wonders of boys, too. Mickey and Kyung might be surprised to hear this, but Irene kept a secret trapper keeper under her bed, and in this trapper keeper were magazine photos of her favorite TV and movie stars like Cory Haim, God rest his soul, Mark Paul Gosselaar, Christian Slater, Kiefer Sutherland, and MacGyver. All famous, all hunky, and, of course, all blonde. So I wasn’t really surprised when I met Schuyler for the first time. I’m pretty sure Irene was destined to marry a blonde with movie-star good looks. Well done, Irene.
Like any good big sister, too, Irene had her fair share of fun at my expense, including several times when she thought it would be hilarious to undo my bikini top, throw it across the pool, and then holler at the top of her lungs for help. I’d jump in after it and some family member – usually Steven, who frequently had the thankless task of babysitting us – would come running out to see what was wrong. There I’d be – dogpaddling frantically across the pool, and Irene would just sit in the Jacuzzi and cackle.
But as I was writing this speech, and thinking of what I could tell you about what Irene was like as a little girl and how important she has been in my life, one image kept coming to mind and it’s the best metaphor I can think of for the special kind of friend Irene is.
When we were little, we used to play ‘Snow White.’ Irene always let me be Snow White, which meant that she was my Prince Charming. I would pretend to be dead, and Irene would clap a hand over my mouth, kiss the back of it, and then pick me up and carry me off into the sunset. For a while this worked just fine, until I outgrew her in both height and weight. Then it didn’t work so well. But I still insisted on playing Snow White, and so Irene was stuck lifting about 80lbs of dead weight off the ground. It’s a wonder she doesn’t have back problems. It’s even more of a wonder that she kept on doing it.
But this is the sort of friendship Irene gives, and I know many of you have had the good fortune of knowing what I mean. When the weight you carry seems impossibly heavy, Irene offers you her strength to help you carry it. And she offers it so graciously – with love and laughter, without hesitation. And that is true friendship.
All I can say is it’s a good thing she found a Prince Charming who is twice her size and who can easily carry her off into the sunset, because we all know how much she deserves this happy ending.
Irene, my best friend, my big sister – I love you. You are a light to everyone here, and we are so lucky to get to celebrate with you today. If everyone could raise their glasses with me…..Irene and Schuyler – here is to a lifetime of love, laughter, blessings and, most importantly, friendship. Congratulations.