Wedding of my Nanny June and Pawpaw Jigs
Wedding of my Nanny June and Pawpaw Jigs

Here's something that was told to me after my grandmother's funeral, when we were all reminiscing and telling stories:

Apparently my mother's cousin had the Worst Wedding Ever back in the '50s. Now this was out in rural Kentucky where most weddings were fairly small affairs.

My great aunt's mother (Jessie) and my great aunt had planned every detail meticulously. My mom and her three siblings (or “the babies” as they were collectively known) were going to be a part of the wedding. Every one from the bride to the babies would have a dress that was handmade by my aunt, with fittings the likes of which still impressed my mom to this day. There were flowers, and there was a church, and there was going to be pomp and circumstance.

But then there was a freak blizzard, which nobody saw coming. The only people that were able to get to the church were the people in the wedding.

There was not a single person at the church sitting in the pews.

Then my mom, because she was five and had been brought up with the “proper way to pray,” lost the rings. In her words: “It never occurred to me that I could pray with my eyes open. So I closed my eyes and they just sort of fell off the little pillow.”

Then, because of the snow storm, the heat was cranked up so high that the groom passed out.

Three times.

The last time he couldn't be revived right away, and they literally carried him away from the altar.

The preacher looked my great aunt in the eye and said “Don't worry. I don't care if you two never got to say ‘I do.' You're married.”

As she told me the story my great aunt cackled merrily.

“And I was married for fifty-four years! So don't worry about your wedding, even if it's a disaster, it doesn't mean the marriage will be, too.”

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Comments on The worst wedding ever

  1. That is so sweet. And such a great perspective to have, both on past and possible future mishaps!

  2. I needed to read this today–I’m getting married this Saturday in Chicago, and flights are getting cancelled left and right because of the radar tower fire.

    • I’m in Chicago too. I work for Marriott and today we only had three cancellations for flights. Things are getting back to normal finally. Don’t lose sleep, it’ll all work out <3

    • I’d take a bad wedding and terrific marriage any day rather than the reverse 🙂

  3. It’s hard to compare weddings but mine went pretty badly, too: Outdoors in an isolated meadow. Uninvited Father-in-Law arrived bleeding from a car accident. Mother-in-Law two hours late. Freezing hail. Threats and insults throughout the hurried ceremony. Frightened Mother was pushed into the potato salad. Sister-in-Law was pushed into the muddy creek. Groom was kicked in the cummerbund. Father-in-law was stabbed with a plastic fork then driven to the police station and kicked out. Bride, groom, and four others, plus three Great Danes in the back, were driven to reception in the cab of a pickup. Bride was soaking wet for hours. Mother, holding marriage license, refused to go to reception, so it didn’t get signed for a month. Police arrived while bride was cutting cake and arrested Groom (for no good reason). After Mother-in-Law retrieved her son, he had a panic attack and had to drive himself to the emergency hospital. Valium quashed the wedding night. We’ve been happily married for 34 years.

  4. I totally just cried. This is wonderful <3 I can relate- almost 20 years ago- it was a tropical storm, raining and 102* in Jamaica where my husband and I were eloping…. the ladies in the salon used an oil based product to "set" my ass length hair which promptly wouldn't hold a curl even tho I'd sat under a hot drier for HOURS…. the heat/humidity caused my hands to swell so I couldn't get my rings off for the ceremony….blah, blah, blah… I had a meltdown Chernobyl style temper tantrum in the room getting ready… my fiance handed me a drink- stood behind me and curled and sprayed my hair, and then went and got ready in the other room. The rain stopped- the sun came out- we met down at the beach- and 30+ plus people we had met at the swim-up bar the day before- were waiting for us to be our "guests" – the sunset was amazing, we were married and we made friends that we are still in contact with just shy of 20 years later… so that old Auntie's comments were spot on. <3

  5. My folks had a pretty bad wedding themselves back in 1976. My dad’s sister, my Aunt, had a heart attack during the reception which was being held at my parent’s home, and DIED ! My folks have been married for 38 years this coming December, so I guess it didn’t jinx them !

  6. WOW I did not realize there was so many “bad wedding day” that exist…. I thought I was the only one but mine was not as bad as you all listed here up above… My mother in law did not show up to our wedding and she wants us to fly to Reno to do a wedding do over there next year for our anniversary, I am not sure if we will do it because I am worried of having another “bad wedding day”…..

  7. This is so funny! I guess the lesson is that the wedding isn’t as important as the marriage. This seriously needs to e communicated more-I bet there are loads of brides out there ashamed that their wedding was horrible or bad or just not WIC perfect. It happens and it’s OK! You’re not a terrible person!

  8. Wow! All these “worst wedding” stories are starting to make me nervous! We are getting married in January, and live in Dallas, and I’ve been worried that there will be a snow storm, even though they rarely happen! I’m at the point of the wedding planning that I’m ready to elope!

  9. Cynderella Lee! I thought I was the only one. My MIL blew it off after we paid for her flight and hotel. So nice not to be the only one. That is what I love about this site.

  10. This post could not have better timing for me. I am getting married today, and so many of the things I had planned have gone wrong in the past two days that I had a bit of a melt down last night. Seeing this post this morning has made me feel so much better!

  11. My wedding day began with clouds when just the day before the sun was out. My hair and makeup person cut out early so I looked like crap! For some reason many people decided not to show up. My mom and MIL lit the unity candle on accident. I peed myself and it ended up raining like the end was upon us! Wrong flower colors….the list goes on and on! It’s been almost 9 years! He is and our love was and is worth all the craziness of that day!

  12. I was at a wedding a couple of weeks ago and somebody had to be taken out of there on a stretcher. I think it was one of the bride’s relatives – maybe her grandfather? I don’t know. I think he ended up being OK though.

  13. I really needed this my wedding is December 26th, I have the worst bridal party ever. They’re never on time, they did not show up to my bridal shower and they’re asking if it is okay to show up late to my wedding. Im about to explode!!!!!

    • Redo your bridal party….uninvite each one of those sorry losers! They are selfish and rude…..find some nice gals who will support YOU .

  14. Good day. my name is Lisa. i need some advice please. I am tired of thinking and analyzing, my head wants to burst with thinking.
    Pls b patient and read till the end.

    I got married in 2012. I am happily married with a kid. I got married to the love of my life after searching for so many years. My husband wasn’t working when we got married and still isn’t working. I was working then but lost my job last year. Things have been really rough for us.

    Ok, the problem is I cant seem to get over the hitches on our wedding day. Our wedding was very small due to the fact that he wasn’t working. His family really didn’t support him financially,so most of the bills was footed by me and my family.

    To cut the long story short, we had a very small wedding and I am kind of feeling bad because I always dreamed of a very nice wedding for myself. I didn’t want a society wedding mind you,but at least something nice and semi-elaborate

    The wedding day came ,bright an sunny, long awaited.It was done in Nigeria.The hitches which I cant seem to get over and which is eating me up and making me so miserable are:

    1.  My husband fell ill some days to our wedding. As a result,he was on malaria drugs on that day. to worsen it, he took alcohol,which he claimed will make him sharper and more energetic,but he still wasn’t his usual jovial self

    2. The guy to make my hair also fell ill days to my wedding and put off his phone. I called and called on the wedding morning all to no avail. When he finally showed up,it was late and some few hours to the time to go to church and as such,he did a rubbish job ,because he was weak and kept on resting at intervals. I was in a hurry to meet up with the time in the church and couldn’t do anything about it. I hated my hair. When I look at my wedding pictures, its all i see

    3. I couldn’t afford  a lavish and expensive gown ,I had to borrow a gown from my friend who got married recently(we are the same size) for a token fee of 10,000naira(about 50 dollars). As such, I couldn’t shop for gown myself. what I have always dreamed off.

    4.  The Dj didn’t play the entrance song we asked for to dance into the hall and as such, we didn’t dance well. In fact, he didn’t play most of our selected songs. He sent someone else instead of coming himself

    5. My husband was tired and feeling weak from the malaria and  didn’t really dance as we planned. He is a very good dancer. I danced alone most of the time. (very painful)

    6. The decorator didn’t do a very good job. Used ugly old rug and substandard materials.(sobs). We couldn’t afford a very expensive decorator

    7. The hall was small( we had to use the church hall to cut cost) and very hot. No AC,only fans

    8. The journey to Ghana ,for our honeymoon was stressful. Immigration kept on stopping us at intervals( we went by road to cut cost)

    9. We did our honeymoon in a relative’s house. Although we had our privacy and driver at our disposal. But I would have preferred a very nice hotel.

    I have tried to psyche myself that the important thing is that I am married to the man i love,but I CANT SEEM TO STOP THINKING ABOUT MY WEDDING DAY and all these hitches . I wish I can turn back the hands of time, I will change so many things. I wish I can have a RE-DO of my wedding day,if that is possible.

    Please advice me. I am tired of how I am feeling. I need to get it out of my mind. What should I do? Am I being paranoid?

    This feeling I have is even made more painful because my  sister is getting married soon and her husband to be has money.Both of them are working in a good company and the guy’s parents are rich.  In fact,they are planning a very elaborate ceremony. Mind you, I am not jealous or envious, just feeling low and I cant help comparing. Am I a bad person? She has been through a lot emotionally in terms of failed relationships, and I am very happy for her. I just wished mine was also a bit more elaborate than what we had.

    please help me. because I think I am allowing this thoughts to eat me up too much.


    • I know how you feel. Because of things out of my control, my husband and I were married in a judges’ office. We didn’t know a soul in town (my husband was in the military) but 2 airmen agreed to be our witnesses. The only flowers were a corsage on my “wedding dress.” It was the dressiest one I had but I didn’t even like it! My mom bought it for $5 at Kmart and it was a mini-skirt. (It was the late 1970’s.) None of the families or friends were able to come and since we had not much money, our reception was in our tiny studio apartment. We had a cake and that’s it. Only my male maid of honor came to our reception. No honeymoon.. no cash… I wish I had a better wedding.. I do feel sorry for myself sometimes but then I remember that being married for almost 40 years to the same man and having a wonderful family is worth much more than any one day.

  15. I’m getting married this June and I already have a built-in potential snafu to my wedding. Right next to our ceremony/reception site are railroad tracks (why they decided on a venue by busy tracks, I will never know), but the place is pretty and pretty cheap so we went with it. We have been there a couple times when the train went by and it is loud and clanky. The videographer has done weddings there before so he is aware of the situation (that reminds me to tell the officiant) and he said if a train does go by to just pause the ceremony otherwise we will miss it on the video. So we have the potential of standing in AWKWARD SILENCE in the middle of the wedding. I don’t know how my guests will feel but I know I am probably going to be making goofy faces at my groom and giggling at the absurdity of the awkwardness. Maybe we can all count the train cars together!

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