19: Humoring the Groom

19: Humoring the Groom

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Here Comes the Bride

Humoring the Groom

Even the gods love jokes.


My fingers fumbled with the cloth buttons on the jacket of my pink mother-of-the-groom suit. In a short time, I would welcome our first daughter-in-law into the family. I had no reservations. Lori had won my heart as quickly as she had won my son’s. My anxiety was over something else — something that would happen during the ceremony.

Ron was and still is a weeper. He has been a sensitive child as long as I can remember. I feared it was going to be a boxful-of-tissues ceremony. As the wedding day approached, I wondered what we might do to help him keep his composure long enough to make it through his vows.

In addition to Ron’s weeping, we had to contend with the best man’s history of fainting during wedding ceremonies. His last had been his brother’s, and he had buckled at the knees midway through. Certainly, we could find some way around both problems.

Drawing from something I had seen at a friend’s daughter’s wedding, I approached the groomsmen with my idea. Ron’s two brothers were delighted to participate in my plan, as well as his friends who knew Ron’s sense of humor would come through and save him from himself.

From my seat in the front row, I watched in awe as my child took the hands of his bride and began to recite his vows. Just as predicted, we could see the tears begin to flow. But then it came time to ask for the best man to produce the ring. The best man, Gary, was still standing, a slight twinkle in his eye. He had something else to think about other than keeping his knees from buckling.

When the pastor asked for the ring, Gary put a hand in his pocket. He then stuck his other hand in another pocket. When both came up empty, he checked the inside pockets of his tuxedo. Empty. He turned to the groomsman behind him who immediately began to check his pockets. And so it went all the way to the end where my youngest son finally fished the ring out of the last pocket he checked.

Chuckles broke out as the wedding guests realized what was happening. Lori’s face softened as she saw the ring coming up the line of groomsmen. But the minister’s face remained completely serious. Not a flicker of humor. My heart sank. I didn’t want to create a problem. I had just wanted to break the tension for the guys. Now I may have gotten them into trouble.

The wedding reception over, we took the tape from the camera of a friend who had videotaped the whole day and went home to make copies. As we gathered around the television, my husband hooked up the video so we could relive our wonderful day. A shadow crossed my face as we watched the ring ceremony and the boys’ antics. Just afterward, the pastor turned to face the back of the podium where our friend’s camera was set up. As he did, his face broke into a wide grin! I relaxed. He had obviously enjoyed the prank as much as everyone else.

~Karen Robbins

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