This past Saturday started a long time ago for me. Wait, what? Almost 15 years ago, I was standing at a bus stop waiting to ride the bus for the first time to my new junior high. It was my first day at Memorial Parkway Junior High and I knew exactly zero people. I had also never rode a bus before and I was pretty panicked about it. I kept having visions of that terrifying walk down the aisle where all the Forrest Gump kids tell me I can't sit with them. Thankfully, I had like, the very first stop at ass-early o'clock, so there was no one to tell me I couldn't sit there. I was very lucky that, at the stop right after mine, a tan skinned skinny boy with big curly hair got on and sat right next to me. His name was Anthony and he was in the same grade I was. I was relieved. I made a friend.
That's Anthony, popping out from under my dress...at senior prom.
Junior high was tough for us because-duh-we were awkward ass 6th graders. From day one, I knew Anthony was different and special. He loved to sing in the choir with me, he was always considerate and he was a great friend. Things were a little more tough for Anthony. He was interested in music and fashion and that made it hard for him as a guy. As a thank you for being such a good friend to me, I (along with all our other friends) always made sure to stand up for him and protect him from the cruelties of junior high. You wanna talk shit about my BFF? I'll kick your ass. That mentality still holds true today. We went through a lot over the next ten or so years. We graduated from junior high, then high school, we went to get higher education, we got jobs, there was drama, we gained new friends, we lost old friends, and we loved each other. One night, I was driving back to Baton Rouge from New Orleans and my phone started blowing up. It was Anthony. I was worried. He was crying. We didn't say anything for awhile and I just let him cry. When he calmed down, I asked, "Anthony, sweetheart, what's wrong?" He answered, "I have to tell you something." I said, "you can tell me anything." He said, "I'm gay." -silence- I responded, "okay, but what do you need to tell me?" This guy had been my best friend for ten years! This new revelation wasn't changing anything. Fast forward. Anthony met Richard and he was a changed person. Richard loved Anthony for exactly who he is: compassionate, understanding, lover of fashion and Hello Kitty. So when Richard proposed to Anthony, I was out of my mind thrilled for them both.
Photo Credit: @ashleycliu
And sooner than we knew it, September 14 was upon us and this happened:
I got my hairs and makeups did. I also attempted to cover my tan lines. Failed.
Top to bottom, left to right: Me and Marly at her parents' house (TL), Me and my Maker's Mark+Ginger Ale (Center), Ashley and me-we were dates for the evening (TR), Me, Colleen, Marly, and Ashley in front of the Houston Skyline.
L to R: coming down the aisle, saying their vows, WE DID IT!
See this chick up there? She's serving champagne off her dress!
So! As I wind this down, I just have a few things I want to make sure that I say to my best friend and his new husband. Anthony, I just want you to know how proud I am to say that I know you. I am blessed beyond measure to be able to say that I have watched you grow from a kid with big hair, full of secrets to a man with incredible skills with a chi flat iron. I am so thankful that you have found a person who truly loves you for everything you are and can celebrate in all of your wonderful qualities. Everyday, find myself in awe of your amazing ability to embrace life and everything that comes with life while being incredibly strong and never losing your optimism or sense of humor. Richard, You take care of my boy. You love him and care for him and buy him all the Chanel bags he could ever want. I am leaving him in your responsible hands and I have never been more sure that he will be one-hundred percent okay. I am so excited to have you become a part of our crazy family-you are far more loved than you know. Love, Aislinn This is going to be a hard wedding to top. Definitely the wedding of the century!