I got married on Friday! I can honestly say it was the best day of my life.
I was absolutely bricking it all the way through our meal as I knew I had to deliver my speech at the end of it. Here is what I said.
Well where do I begin?
I want to start off by thanking all of you for making it to celebrate with us today. It means a lot to us both that you’ve been able to be part of our special day.
I wasn’t really sure where to start when it came to writing a speech – it’s only something people are ever meant to do once, and so after a few stressful evenings and lots of googling, I’ve cobbled together something which I hope won’t last too long – as believe it or not neither myself or Ben like to be the centre of attention…
So I thought I’d start with a few thank you’s.
Firstly, our mums. Thank you Paula and Jenny. Thank you for the guidance and support you’ve given us both throughout our lives – through the good times and bad. Thanks for being supportive of our relationship and for being there when we needed you. Mum, thank you for raising me on your own as a single parent that paid for everything I could have ever wished for. We don’t say It enough, but we love you both and wouldn’t be where we are today without either of you. Thanks for everything you’ve done for us In the lead up to the wedding and in helping us to plan this special day.
Adam. Our best man and friend. Our mutual love for lasagne knows no bounds, and we can polish off a bottle of rose between us in the space of a few minutes. The only person I know that can lose his wallet, phone, keys and dignity on a night out and still be proud to tell the tale the next day. And then do the same again the following week, and the week after that. The only person I know that packs his sun tan lotion into his hand luggage, along with a selection of fruit, to be confused when he gets stopped when going through security at the airport. It’s hard to believe that we’ve only known each other for just over 5 years, but I think we all knew when we first met that we’d be friends for a long time. Like all good friends we’ve had our ups and downs – falling outs and arguments. But all it takes is for one silly message on WhatsApp to bring us back together and Its like nothing ever happened. And frankly, who else would you find to put up with your antics for so long? In all seriousness though (and because you’re about to read out your speech about us)… thank you for being you and for helping us through thick and thin. We’ll always be there for you and we know you will be for us too.
Our families. We don’t have a huge family between us, but we always prefer quality over quantity anyway. At least that’s what I tell myself.. unless we’re talking about lasagne in which case both applies. Thank you to my family for making the journey down from Nottingham to be here – and to Shaun – my uncle – for allowing us to gatecrash his birthday today. We don’t see as much of you all as we should, but when we do we always have a great time. Thank you for welcoming Ben in to our family with open arms and without questions. To Ben’s family – Paula, Nita, Danielle – thanks for making me a part of the family and having me around for the past 10 years. And to Dave – my drinking buddy – long may our drinking continue at family functions and events – we help each other through them and I’m not sure we could cope otherwise..
To our friends – we love you all, but a special mention has to go to Mandy, Kevin and Gareth – we’ve had many a great night together and so many fabulous holidays, from Florida, to Mexico to Las Vegas. Whether it’s drinking unknown blue alcohol from the back end of a porcelain cow, or watching YouTube videos at 3 In the morning with a large vodka – we always have the best time and we know you’ll be there for us no matter what. We also know how to have a good time without any alcohol believe it or not!
I also have to give a mention to our absent friends and family that couldn’t be with us today. We know that no matter where you are and who you’re with, you’ll always look down on us and protect us from whatever life has to throw at us. We will always remember you and we think about you all each and every day.
And finally, to my husband Ben.
Thank you for being a part of my life for the past decade. When we first met all those years ago, neither of us could have ever imagined we’d be here today in front of our friends and family, as husbands.
I’m sorry for completely ruining your perfectly planned proposal. Nearly three years ago, we were on a lovely holiday in Mexico. The day before we had been celebrating Mexican Independence Day in the only way Mexican’s know how – with copious amounts of tequila – and so it’s fair to say I wasn’t feeling the freshest when I woke up – still on UK time – at about 5am the next morning, the day before my birthday in 2014. I turned over in bed to find Ben already awake. We’d not been in Mexico long and so we weren’t used to their time zone by this point. Ben suggested a walk along the beach to watch the sunrise – which – on reflection – would have been the most romantic setting you could possibly imagine. My reply? “Ugh god, I can’t think of anything worse”, and promptly turned over and fell back to sleep for a few hours.
I woke up later, still facing the wall, and opened an eye to see a ring box on the bedside table. Then it clicked, and my heart raced. I closed my eyes again quickly for what seemed like an age, before opening them again. Ben must have been awake for all of this time, waiting nervously for me to come round. “It’s not my Birthday until tomorrow” I said, knowing full well it wasn’t a birthday present. “It’s not your birthday present” Ben said, “What is it then?” I replied. I was still facing the wall at this point… and then Ben said “What do you think it is… Will you Marry Me?”, and as they say the rest is history!.. I think it’s a much better story then a beach sunrise proposal anyway…
We’ve shared some great times together, and some not so great, but we’ve been there for each other through everything and I honestly don’t know how I would have done it without you. You’re my best friend, my soul mate, my companion and now my husband – and I can’t wait to share the rest of our lives together.
I’d now like to raise a few toasts, so please join me in raising a glass to our mums, Jenny and Paula – to absent friends and family – to my husband Ben – and finally, to love.