The stars shown overhead, buzzing excitedly in time with the hum of the overhead halogens. Only three days until the wedding. Months ago, when wedding planning had begun, I decided to make Sean and his wife-to-be a cake. But not just any cake. I going to make them a three-tiered grand affair with sugar flowers and ribbons. I already had a basis in making wedding cakes, as I had rolled roses and fondant on my brother's wedding cake to help my mom out. There had been a few protests of "Don't you want a professional to make your wedding cake?" But I knew I could do it, and Sean was behind me 100%.
"It could be a big ole cookie with our names written on it in icing, and I wouldn't care. I'm just so happy you're going to be making it. It means more, that way." He'd said. Which made me want it to be perfect.
It took me four hours, not including baking time. I remember pulling up the venue in Matt's van, the cake tiers not yet stacked, hoping nervously the whole thing didn't just fall apart when I stacked them on top of one another. A few of the wedding guests eyes me nervously as I pulled cake parts out of the van. It didn't look like much yet, but I would show them. It was going to be amazing.
The bride and the groom had complete faith in me. I didn't need to impress them; I already had just by showing up with a finished cake. I pressed the structural pieces down into the largest tier, holding the middle tier nervously over the first. If I dropped it from too high, it could shatter, just break in half. If I dropped it from too low, my nails would graze the fondant and ruin the finish. I paused over it, shifting it again and again before deciding it was centered. When I dropped it, the cake settled happily into the perfect center of the tier below it. The top, being smaller, was even easier. I allowed myself to breath once the third tier was perfect and had dropped into place without a hitch.
I drew a crowd as I wrapped the final ribbon around the outside of the top tier, adding a few more calla lilies for good measure. "You made this?" The question sounded insultingly filling with incredulity. I wanted to punch whoever said it.
"Yes. I made this." And it was perfect.