“The wedding cake comes as three tiers. We can either keep them separate, or pay $100 to stack them together,” I explained at the dinner table at our mini celebratory engagement BBQ with my family. I pointed my chin at my mom as I added, “the guy at the store said the stacking would be for you. He said, ‘we can stack the cakes, to make mom happy.'”
My mom frowned. “It’s your cake! Stacked or separate tiers, why would I care?”
For a little while, immediately after we got engaged, I really did worry she didn’t care. I texted her late on the Saturday night after it happened. I sent her photos of the ring, and she responded happily enough.
But then on the Sunday, I didn’t hear from her at all during the day. I knew she had a major event happening at work, but it still felt uncharacteristically quiet on her end. I wondered if maybe she already had too much on her plate. If adding the stress of planning a wedding in the mix would prove to be too much at this time. I assumed she just didn’t have it in her to participate. I figured that would be okay. We could do it all on our own, of course.
On Sunday night, however, she started sending me links to potential wedding venues. She always wanted me to have a destination wedding. I never wanted to. We decided a lakeside ceremony outside of Leafton would be a nice compromise. The happiest I’ve ever seen my fiance, Ant, is jumping in the waves at a local beach. A beach side wedding just seemed to make the most sense. Ant loved the idea too. We began researching. At 10:00am on Monday morning, 36 hours into our engagement, my mother texted me, “have you called any of the venues yet?”
That’s the mom I know and love.
Soon after, we met for the informal BBQ, and six days after the engagement, we’d already booked an appointment to tour our first potential wedding location. It was a historic property with sprawling lawns near the lake, almost two hours north of the city. Ant was working, so I thought it would just be me and my mom taking a quick look.
To my surprise, when I pulled into my parents’ driveway that day, I saw she’d rounded up the troops. They sat waiting for me in their van. My dad was in the driver’s seat ready to go. Behind him sat my grandfather and grandmother in the middle row. My mom strapped in my grandmother’s wheelchair before adjusting the blanket on her lap. She took my grandfather’s hat and hung it on the plastic clip on the sidewall of the van. Then she settled into her own seat in the very back, leaving the passenger’s seat to me.
The future mother of the bride announced then, “I think you should stack the three tiers of your wedding cake together.”
Of course she cares.