We were pretty much wrapped up in the dinner, so much so that we'd forgotten about the wedding entirely until I came home from Pakua at 5:30. And the invitation was for 6:30. So, we arranged a ride with people who were also going, and rushed to shower and get dressed. Since these were shul friends, I had to wear a different outfit. Fortunately, our dinners are semi-forma at best, so my good navy suit was available. I dressed it up with a silver dogwood blossom pin and a silver evening bag. I also wore a navy and silver headscarf layered over a black one. I don't have a choice about shoes and I don't wear makeup. My evening bags hold a single key and my pda, with Jonathan carrying the money and cellphone - I don't need a comb or lipstick.
We were only invited for the chuppah. This is not uncommon, and we've done this before. And those times I was more or less fine with it - exactly a year ago, we went to the wedding of a neighbor's son. Just being invited was enough of a thing - we'd hardly expect the reception. And I wasn't exactly counting on being invited to this wedding but.
But they'd invited the rest of the congregation (they're in our shul), and a fair number were given invites to the whole thing. And that part is...painful. Because I kept running into people we knew holding place cards or asking where I was sitting. Our ride to the wedding, who had not been members very long and who were not "regulars" at their table, were invited to the whole thing. I felt marginalized and,well, twelve. You know. Not part of the "cool" crowd. And I reacted very badly and childishly - to the point of tears. And as much as I told myself to let it go, and to get over it and all that, it only made it worse. Of course, a lot of people were also only invited to the chuppah, but that's not as easy to tell until afterwards. I mean "not holding a place card" means nothing.
It didn't help that we'd arrived late. There was a buffet for the kabbalt punim (bride's reception), but the salads and cold cuts were all gone by the time we'd arrived and I'd gone to the buffet table. That left fruit and cake.
I don't eat cake.
And, to kvetch further, the area was small and hot, even with a lot of men over at the chasan's tish (the groom's table) and full of people I didn't know and crowds can get very uncomfortable. I did get a lot of nice remarks about the dinner the night before, and praise for the journal, and that really should have helped. I ended up crying in the (crowded) ladies' room. Not a good thing, and it made me feel more childish.
But it helped. I was able to return to the room and chat comics with a friend until the groom arrived to veil the bride, and we could file into the room for the chuppah, and I was perfectly all right during the wedding. The bride was lovely, but I only knew that because I knew her and because I greeted her when I got to the room.
It's traditional for Jewish brides to wear a veil over their faces, as Rivka did when she married Yaakov. This is the veil the groom places on the bride at the bedeken. In some circles, this is a solid piece of satin. In others, it's a simple blusher that barely obscures her face and allows her to see. This is what I did at my own wedding. Miera wore layers of gauze - she looked like she had more veil in front than in back (it was attached to her hair in front of her tiara.)
When the chuppah was over, Jonathan arranged for a ride home (and I saw that a number of people, both known and unknown to me, were getting their coats and leaving, so, again, I felt both better and worse. Better for knowing it wasn't just us, worse for being so childish.) and we went to our favorite brick-oven pizza place for dinner - way overdressed, of course.