I soon will be a M.O.B.
For those of you who haven't been thrown in the middle of wedding plans for a daughter, that stands for Mother of the Bride, which is apparently very different from being the M.O.G., i.e., Mother of the Groom.
Two mothers of grooms told me their duty is simply to "wear beige and be quiet," which I thought was not only clever, but possibly enviable.
In some strange universe, my daughter asked me to make her centerpieces because the theme of the wedding is travel. Her fiancé spends 90 percent of his job in Europe and Asia, setting up computer systems. They got engaged on a bridge in Rome after he called long distance to ask for her hand in marriage.
So, with two artistic friends, we have created these cool centerpieces in miniature suitcases with compasses and small airplanes, passports, coupe cars (it's an Art Deco wedding), trains, and each with a neat 1920's postcard from around the world that were found on eBay.
It all started when she asked if I had any old maps. Ironically, I had just thrown away an entire box of maps we had from our honeymoon that had been stored in the basement. As Fate would have it, the recyclables had not yet left the house.
When I look back on the whole wedding experience, there's one story that will always make me laugh. I was telling somebody how I really thought it was something that here we were, using maps from our own honeymoon 40 years ago to make centerpieces for our daughter's wedding.
Shaking her head, she said, "No, I really think it's 'something' that you still had maps from your honeymoon and kept them for 40 years."
We rented a van to take all 29 centerpieces up to Minneapolis. After rearranging them several times, we could finally see out of the rear view mirror. The best thing was that once they were delivered, my husband and I had an empty van and went antiquing.
For the first time since we bought our little Cube, I wasn't restricted to "We can't fit that in the car," so I bought a fun cabinet while in Minnesota.
My M.O.B. duties also include writing the ceremony, finding significant readings, and making decorations with my daughter for the chuppah (traditional Jewish wedding canopy) - as well as learning to pronounce it correctly. My husband spent a weekend building it.
Dan's parents laughed when I said "did you ever think you'd have two goys and a guy making a chuppah for your son's wedding."
Jonna has lived in Minneapolis since college, so the bridal shower was really a great time for me to put faces to the names I've heard about all these years, including Dan's many relatives. It was tremendous to be in the midst of all these lovely ladies who have taken my daughter to their hearts.
I remember when I held her for the first time in the hospital 36 years ago, I thought about who she would one day marry. I could not have chosen a better man to make me a M.O.B.