Monday, August 8, 2011

the toast

Good evening.  You all know me by different names.  Some call me Nena, some Betty, and some Gioconda.  Tonight I am honored to be called Gaby’s Matron of Honor.
First of all, I wanted to thank Jessie and Gaby for including us all in this special day.  Thank you to Joni and Rex for everything you have done to prepare for today.  And a special thanks to my parents for their support in making this beautiful event happen.
At one of Gaby’s bridal showers she told a story that I would like to retell today, but from my point of view.
When we were younger my sister and I would go shopping with my mom.  Gaby and I would venture off to the toy department.  This was back in the day when moms let there kids out of their sights while shopping in a big department store.  One time, when Gaby was about 6 or 7 and I was ... older than that, I remember feeling panicked that we couldn’t find our way back to my mom.  In the midst of my anxiety, I looked down at my sister and she was calm as could be.  I asked her, “aren’t you scared?” and she said “no, because I have you.”  Whether she or I realized it, from that moment on I felt responsible for her.
She has always been my best friend.  Whether we were running around my dad’s office, playing Donny and Marie in our living room or swimming for hours in the pool, we were inseparable.  People would ask us all the time if we were twins, technically we’re not but I felt the strength of our bond and feel like we always were.
Don’t get me wrong, we are different. I am messy, she is orderly.  I will panic, she stays calm.  I like to cook, she does the dishes.  You could say we are the perfect compliment to each other.
We went to college together and even worked together for a while.  We borrowed each other’s clothes, cars, purses.  OK I borrowed her purses.  I don’t think mine  ever met her standards.
We became each other’s dates to many events - birthday parties, weddings, one of the last tapings of the Oprah show.  Sorry, had to get that in there one more time.  I couldn’t have imagined going with anyone else.
Being that close meant that we were protective when it came to dating.  Unless it was Rick Springfield or a member of menudo, no one was good enough. Any guy that ever came between us had to be the best. We are both so fortunate to have found that. And look at that, now you’re "Jessie’s girl."

Gaby, I am blessed to have you as my sister and my best friend and I look forward to sharing this new phase of your life with you.
Jessie...are you nervous?
Don’t be.  When I see the way you look at my sister, the love in your eyes in undeniable.  I know that you will care for her and support her.  I feel that you would do anything for her.  I believe that you will love my sister forever.  That’s all I could ever ask.
I admire your work ethic and your relationship with your family.  I love that you are always there to lend a hand.  You are a gentleman and that is truly something special.  
During our girls weekend in palm springs the girls each made a friendship bracelet, you know like the ones we made in junior high.  I’ve been wearing mine almost every day since that trip.  I knew when I started it that I really wanted to give it to you. 

Jessie will you be my friend?
Now that we’re friends, I thought that it was my duty having lived with my sister for over 20 years, to pass on some advice that might make things easier for you.
You know those days when you get home from work and you’re so tired you just want to kick off your shoes, get out of your work clothes and into your pj’s, and just lay on the couch?  Well, if you live with Gaby,  those shoes have a  place.  Those works clothes better not be in a pile on the floor next to the clothes you wore the day before.  And you might want to vacuum those footprints you just left in the carpet.
Gaby budgets for everything.  Whether it’s a trip to Hawaii or a trip to the grocery store.  If she doesn’t have the money, she doesn’t bring it home.  So my advice is, pay cash and get rid of the receipt. 
I  know you’re working on your spanish.  Here’s a phrase I would start practicing; at the end of an argument try saying “Lo que tu digas.”  That just means “I’m glad you understand my point of view.” and then walk away. It works every time.
I’m sure you know this but Gaby will be your biggest cheerleader, she will always be faithful, she will put you first, she is generous and strong and dedicated.  And the fact that she has chosen to be with you lets me know that you are all those things too.
To the both of you I have just 2 words of advice.
the first is trust : in each other and what you vowed today.
and the second is honesty: not just with each other but always be honest with yourself, how you are feeling and how you are making the other person feel.
and if either of you ever feel lost, know that you will always have me.
Please raise a glass:
Jessie and Gaby, may you have more love than your heart can hold, more happiness than your soul can bear, more laughter than can fit in your belly and just enough heartache to never take those moments for granted.

I love you both!

3 comments:

Nancy said...

Oh Betty - I am crying - that was absolutely beautiful! Thank you so much for sharing. (and you look gorgeous!)

Holly said...

I am crying too Betty! What an amazing blog!

Sarah said...

What a fantastic speech!