A week ago today my little boy walked down the aisle, hand-in-hand with his father, bearing not the pillow with the rings but his favourite Baby Einstein DVD case.
I was very proud, like all mums must be when their children first take part in a bridal march. When we were first asked if Little A would be the ring bearer at my cousin's wedding, I accepted with great trepidation and told my aunt in all honesty that I doubted he would cooperate. At that stage he was refusing to wear shoes, not at all given to following instructions and rarely walked but mostly ran.
In the months leading up to the wedding I tried on a couple of occasions to make him walk down the hallway of our little flat carrying a small pillow but had no success. If he walked, he would throw the pillow aside. If he carried it, he would hug it to his chest, run down the hall and crash into the couch, laughing.
Two weeks before the big day, I borrowed the top he would wear from my best friend from childhood, the same top her son wore to my wedding. The native Filipino dress top, called a Barong Tagalog, was long-sleeved and made of slightly scratchy cotton. Every time I tried to put it on Little A just to check it for size, he would pull it off. I was already unsure he would walk down the aisle, let alone with the rings and now half-dressed as shoes were still a no go.
On the day of the wedding, we had to wake him from his nap to get to the church on time. He had slept two hours and woke up cheerful. Always eager for a car ride, he enjoyed the trip to the church but weekend traffic meant we arrived just in time. I ran him into the church where the march had already begun, and got him into his top with surprisingly little fuss just in time to push him down the aisle. A little confused, he looked at me with a puzzled expression, as if to ask what exactly he was meant to do. Right then, Big A came up, took him by the hand and off they walked, just perfectly.
Later on, I helped him deliver the rings for the priest to bless, and this time he wanted to climb the stairs to the altar. During the photo session following the ceremony, the other little boys and girls stood at their places obediently while Little A had to be chased away from the priest's chair and hauled back bodily to the steps where the photos were being taken, several times as he attempted escape more than once.
Nevertheless, I considered the event a huge success. Next on the list, performing at the school end-of-term concert. That one is still a dream.