Eleventh hour lady-in-waiting



“You are going to serve as a lady-in-waiting today” the minister’s wife whispered into my ears minutes after I walked into the church premises. I had been informed of a wedding about 10pm the day before.

The next day, a Tuesday was the D-day; the time was 2pm.

The colour code was purple and yellow.

The good news was I was free and had a matching dress for the occasion; the bad news was it was unwashed because I wore the same dress barely 48 hours before.

I woke up early on Tuesday, washed and double-spun the dress in the machine, postponed most of the unimportant errands I had lined up for the day and headed to church.

I was unfamiliar with the bridegroom and the hundred plus faces that showed up to the wedding and was therefore somewhat anxious to take up this role.

What if there had been detailed rehearsals and my last minute role was clashing with the arrangements?

I certainly wouldn’t want a stranger to appear at my church wedding as my ‘lady-in-waiting’.

Howbeit, this case had to be treated as an exception because this Europe-based couple were tying the knot in the country to honour their roots.

Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, the King of creation served as the processional hymn as we glided in.

All the while, I hoped I wasn’t stepping to the beat of a different drummer.

When I served as a maid of honour at a wedding a few years back, the procession was okay but not as perfect as I wanted it to be, despite hours of practice.

What then would befall this impromptu role I was playing in this procession?

Row of bridesmaids with bouquets at wedding ceremony
Row of bridesmaids with bouquets at wedding ceremony

I hoped for a miracle; I’m not one for last minute ideas.

I walked noticeably faster than the train I was supposed to lead.

I adjusted my pace.

Thank God I didn’t miss my step.

The church hall was full to capacity and extra chairs were arranged; it will be a bad omen for the stranger to trip the train.

“Who gives this woman to be married to this man?”

I was relieved that the rest of the service took place, majorly as planned.

The bride was evidently happy, as was her mother- the two most important people to please at a wedding.

The couple and their parents took turns to sign the marriage register in very high spirits.

I had served in similar capacities, under the same impromptu circumstances but who knew that a Tuesday afternoon wedding will be so well attended and without major hitches?

Who knew that a stranger could serve as a lady-in-waiting and be so spot on? (If I do say so myself)


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