This part of the evening was one of the biggest nods to a "British-style" wedding that we included. When Ross and I first talked about the speeches I didn't really understand what he meant until I learned that a typical British wedding features long (compared to the usual American style) and more formal speeches. Ross was excited about making his groom's speech, while I was nervous that our (mostly American) guests would be restless and uncomfortable with lengthier speeches.
This ended up being one of my favourite parts of the night. All of our speakers did a great job and the crowd was so filled with love and goodwill that it was just delicious. I felt bathed in love and support, which is the perfect way to start a marriage. I will say that not having the speeches on video is my one real regret about our wedding. A friend had warned me ahead of time that a having videographer was the best money she spent, but I didn't go for it. What a fool I was!
One of the things that helped make the speeches flow and kept the room entertained was that Best Man Tom acted as a sort of emcee. He introduced each speaker and got the crowd to applaud everyone. The fact that he regularly does this sort of thing for comedy nights as a stand-up was definitely on display!
BM Tom kicked things off by introducing my dad.
My dad made a very sweet speech. It's no surprise that he's good at public speaking because of his professional life, but in everyday life, he's not a big talker. Whenever he does speak though, he always shows of loving, sweet, and intelligent he is.
Next up, it was MOH Micah's turn. She was so nervous to speak in front of everyone, but did a wonderful job! She read her speech directly from her notes, but was still heartfelt, sweet and funny.
BM Tom took his turn at a speech and did a bang up job. He brought some of his trademark dry humour and gave some insight into Ross' and my earliest meeting.
Finally, it was Ross' turn. He'd worked on his speech quite a bit and I had no idea what he was going to say. I knew he'd do a good job, but had no idea how amazing it would be. My mom described his speech as extra-ordinary, and she wasn't wrong! He worked the audience like a master. He had them laughing and crying. I loved it so much, because it was a chance for people to get some insight into this wonderful man I love. I'm pretty sure everyone in that room fell a little bit in love with him. It was that good!
He spoke about his family and how sad it was that his parents and sister couldn't be with us. He opened up a part of himself that is generally kept private and it was an honour to witness. He shared a piece of his soul with everyone that night.
He was also very, very funny.
He made fun of the terrible pancakes that my mom made us during his first visit.
And the fact that my dad never talks to him.
He even got my big brother crying (though Matt will deny it, even given this photographic evidence!).
What follows is a priceless series of pictures.
The photographer captured the moment that Ross took to thank Ben for marrying us and to tell him that Ross thought Ben could have a future in stand-up if he'd just "drop the God shtick".
As the final part of Ross' speech, he decided to do a twist on the traditional toast. He asked the room to raise their rubber duck key chains and quack them in honour of his new bride.
The room was filled with light and quacks and it was magical!
Seriously, the venue's staff and band members were all gathered around and caught up in listening to the speeches with sweet looks on their faces. I felt like the whole room got to understand this sweet, amazing husband of mine- and that was a wonderful gift.