Last week we realized our guest list had exploded. Not just beyond-long-tables exploded, but beyond-seated-capacity-for-the-tent exploded. I looked at the list again, and I thought about it, and there are maybe 20 people out of the 163 people that I'm not absolutely thrilled to be inviting. Those people are either people I don't know (who are limited, and I do not mind inviting) or people I do know, but who don't seem to be very interested in making much of an effort to keep in touch with me. (As in, I constantly invite them to things and they just can't be bothered to show up.) So there are maybe four or five of those people, but I did not feel like I could not invite them. (Stupid. Just say no.)
Regardless, I thought of our friends whose parents invited so many people to their wedding that they couldn't invite more than ten of their friends. I thought of people for whom an exploding guest list would be a disaster. I thought of people I know who invited people without dates. And I thought about that feeling I got two weeks ago, when the invitations went out. That glowing, happy feeling I got, as I flipped through the invites thinking, "yes, I am glad this person will be here to witness our wedding." That, "oh! I can't wait to see her and I can't believe she's coming all this way!"
And I remember the wedding I tried to plan originally. The cheap, simple wedding in my church hall that would be catered by California Tortilla or Mama Lucia's so we didn't have to worry about cutting the guest list off at a certain point and we could invite people we genuinely care about and want there.* That wedding is whispering over my shoulder as I uncomfortably wonder how to deal if my cousin in fact decides to fly in or a friend needs to bring a date. It is whispering, "now you can have the wedding you wanted!!!!"
I'm not saying that I'm calling up Cal Tor. We're sticking with our caterer; if we have to, we will modify the menu so that there are fewer hors d'oeuvres. We can always buy cheaper wine (can anyone recommend a good cheap red?) But we may choose to abandon reserved seating for anyone but family; we may have to abandon sit-down altogether. We may go with more of a cocktail vibe, which Mark liked initially anyway.
It's also possible that more people won't be able to come than we thought, and that this won't be a problem at all. But is people you liked showing up to a party ever really a problem?
*For the most part we're having that wedding anyway, we're just paying twice as much for it.