|No more of that.|
After helping with a couple of beautiful-but-stressful handmade weddings in the past few years, my mom and I decided that we did not have the energy or the time to fill my wedding with carefully crafted details. I've heard over and over that it's all in the details, but we know it's really not. Also, we have witnessed how those lovely, thoughtful touches can completely consume the bride and her helpers.
And so we were resolved: No projects that would take over our lives and homes. Only small, get-it-done-in-an-afternoon projects allowed.
Then my mom had ankle surgery. She thought it would only put her out of commission for a few days, but when she recovered from the anesthetic, the doctor told her she needed to stay off her feet for six weeks. We had the following, surprisingly lucid, conversation mere hours after her surgery.
Mom: How would you feel about knitted flowers?
Me: Sewn onto a baby hat or something?
Mom: No, for your wedding.
Me: Where are these going to come from?
Mom: I'm going to knit them. I'll make enough to use for centerpieces for all the tables. And your bouquet, if you wanted.
Me: You couldn't even believe how much energy Lauren spent on her flowers, and those were just paper.
Mom: It'll be adorable! Come on, what else am I going to do for the next few weeks?
Me: This is the Vicodin talking, right? This will wear off?
Finally, I told her that if she could find a picture of knitted flowers that didn't look precious, like they belonged on a baby hat or an old lady Christmas sweater, then we'd talk about her knitting flowers. Honestly, I thought she would be too drugged to remember we'd ever had this conversation, or possibly that she was having a stroke and couldn't control her words. But two hours later she called me back.
Mom: Knitted flowers are horrible. Forget that.
Me: Thank you.
Mom: I'm making them out of paper instead.
Me: Oh, that way madness lies.
I tried to talk her out of it; for one thing, I didn't want her to have to spend all her spare time fussing over my wedding. More importantly, it's a slippery slope from handmade flowers to handmade wedding favors and handmade emotional breakdowns.
But I relented. The flowers looked good and were less time-intensive than Lauren's, and they gave Mom something to do while she rested her foot and watched Slings and Arrows.*
At a follow-up appointment about her ankle, her doctor found that she has a new injury, this time in her elbow. It's the kind of injury that comes from performing detailed, repetitive tasks, like, say, making hundreds of tiny paper flowers. Let this be a warning.
*See? She does have good taste, knitted flowers notwithstanding.