i love weddings. i really do. everything about them appeals to my somewhat-latent-in-regards-to-love romantic side: the opportunity to get entirely dolled up and don a special-occasion, instantly-make-me-feel-like-a-princess dress and favorite heels; the way everyone seems indelibly happy, as if such a rare day were an unexpected gift from the gods, covered in pixie dust and oozing champagne-bubbled euphoria; the tingling, warm buzz lingering just overhead, caught in the crystal shimmers of the chandeliers and the coy smiles of flirtation that suddenly turns the whole atmosphere electric with the possibility that tonight might just stand frozen in time, a non-continuum of an evening stolen from outside the realm of concrete and physics.

and then there are the other perks as well, venturing into the very unromantic yet entirely appreciated category of the practical reasons to enjoy weddings: dancing. open bar. pictures of when you dressed to impress. champagne flutes begging for refills and dapper dates always aiming to please, one hand on the small of your back as they guide you across a crowded room and hope everyone thinks they’ve brought quite the prize. i won’t pretend i don’t enjoy these part-and-parcel moments as well. for me, therein lies the essence of a frozen moment: a dose of Magic veneering the quite-real with all the gravity of layered satin, while the familiarity of  common elements hold you grounded in what’s true about the world – the chip of a freshly painted fingernail, the mis-step of a first dance, the sugary-burst of too-sweet icing from a rather unextraordinary yet highly fretted-over wedding cake.

we take what’s real and turn it into something more, something that transcends, by merely adding a little jewelry or slipping a little shimmy into our steps and readjusting our eyes into Romance mode. and it’s okay to fall in love with the world a little at a time; these things need not be rushed.

this weekend, i will wear black lace and pray my fingernails don’t chip (as they always do). i will smile over the rim of my champagne flute and turn my head from side to side to feel my earrings dangle lightly against my cheek. and i will kiss the bride and tell her how happy i am to be part of her beautiful day. my date will look and behave like a perfect gentleman and i’ll skim along happily, twinkling and sparkling in the charm of it all.

and on saturday, when i wake with mascara still blackening my eyelids, i’ll have yet another wedding tucked beneath my skin to remind myself exactly why i love to attend but have no desire to rush into a white gown of my own.