Diary of a Bride-to-Be No. 5

Diary of a Bride-to-Be No. 5 – “And one and two, and one and two…” Matthew and I dutifully turned- more like tornadoed- amongst the plethora of senior citizens at Miss Debbie’s Dance School.

“Shoulders back, dear,” said Miss Debbie herself, harpooning me with a disapproving eye over her red horn-rimmed glasses. Should have been red horns, as far as I was concerned. Ever since we’d started these wedding dance lessons, Miss Debbie had been nothing but a devil to me. In fact, by comparison I was even starting to like my caterer of “you say gelato, I hear jello” fame…something was seriously wrong.

And I had a hunch what it was. Though endlessly critical of my every step, glide, and shuffle, Miss Debbie was sweet as cream pie when it came to my fianc? Matthew, endlessly making gooey eyes at him and complimenting his “form.” Whatever that means. The whole thing was pretty gross considering the lady is about 104. “What can I do?” I thought philosophically as I twirled away from Matthew. “We have to learn our wedding dance somehow.”

And just then, Miss Debbie did something to make me draw the line. “All right chickadees,” she crowed, stomping to the front in her trademark chartreuse platforms. “I thought it would be fun to do something different for the end of class today, and switch partners! This will emphasize… versatility!” she said. “Now grab a partner,” she barked, bee lining straight for my adorably dazed fiancé.

I was floored. This was such…poppycock, as my Grandma Maybl would say. Versatility was necessary if you were learning to salsa dance. The whole point of a wedding dance was to coordinate perfect harmony between you and a specific partner: your love, your life-mate, your fiancé.

But now Miss Debbie was dancing up a storm with my all-of-the above, whirling and cackling with glee. And could it be sweaty Norman I see inching toward me, like the perpetually last-picked kid on the dodge ball team? “No siree?” I thought, squaring my shoulders and giving sweaty Norman a look that stopped him dead in his tracks.

“So much for Southern Hospitality,” I muttered, as I stormed up to a beet-red Matthew and a flabbergasted Miss Debbie. “Matthew,” I said, ignoring the dance teacher’s presence. “We are leaving! Miss Debbie, we’ll be expecting our refund in the mail!”

With that I completed my final dance move for Miss Debbie by waltzing out of the class, Matthew following behind me like an apologetic puppy. “Thank God!” he said, “That woman’s perfume could choke a chicken!”

At my WASP fiancé’s adorable attempt at a Southern-style metaphor, I couldn’t help but melt. “Don’t worry honey,” I said. “We’re never going back.”

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That night in bed, though, I wondered what I had done. The truth is, despite Miss Debbie’s ludicrous praise, Matthew had about three left feet, and I was no Ginger Rogers myself. By axing the dance class, was I resigning Matty and I to make fools of ourselves come wedding dance time? I fretted and stewed all night, my dreams wrought with visions of devils foxtrotting in bright green heels.

And then, in the morning, there it was in the grocery aisle, like a sign that I had done the right thing: the “Now You’re Dancing Wedding Dance DVD”. With reverence, I pulled it down off the shelf and nestled it in down between the anchovies and asparagus. (Okay, so I alphabetize my groceries. They don’t call me type A for nothin’).

When Matt and I popped the wedding dance video in that night, it was pure bliss. No sweaty onlookers, no squawking teacher. No scrutiny and no pressure. Just me and my groom-to-be slowly making our way through the wedding dance steps: Moving Together, Choosing your Song, Beginning and Ending, and, drum roll please… The Dance!

With no pressure, no public eye, and endless chances for rewinding and starting over, in the middle of our little living room, my man and I mastered the perfect wedding dance.

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