After 8 weeks of silence, how does one even begin to share the goodness that was an absolutely perfect wedding? Yes, I said perfect, like those brides on the wedding blogs who always claim their wedding day was “the best day ever.” I used to scoff when I read that, thinking “Really? Was my wedding day really going to be the best day of my life?” I won’t lie – I didn’t think I would feel that way. Yes, I thought I would be happy, excited, completely in love with Kelvin. But I also thought I’d be stressed, nervous, upset about missed details, bad weather, or bad hair. I just never considered the gravity of joy that was possible, which is why I was completely blown away by my emotions at the end of the day.
I have wracked by brain trying to think of a way to explain the immeasurable joy, a way to tie the day, the memories, the stories together. Over and over, the only thing I can consistently come up with is this.
“There is no fear in love, for perfect love casts out all fear.” 1 John 4:18
I had no fear the day I married Kelvin. No, Kelvin and I are not perfect. But we do try to love each other perfectly. That knowledge, that assurance that we were both committed to that kind of love, eliminated all fear from my heart. I moved through the entire day (the entire weekend, really) certain that Kelvin was the man who I was to pledge my everything to, build a home with, raise children, and chase dreams.
So here you go. These are some of my favorite memories, moments so full of love, tears, and laughter that my eyes still fill and my heart still flutters when I think about them.
The First Look: I had thought that I would do something sweet, some sneaky, cute way to make Kelvin turn around. Yet in that moment I was genuinely without words. I stopped feet away from him and whispered “Okay.” It was the farthest I could walk and the only word I could get out. But it was enough, and it was the beginning of an absolutely incredible day.
Seeing My Momma & Daddy: I cannot imagine the emotions a parent must feel when they look at their daughter in her big white dress. What do they see? A little girl with dirty knees and crumbs on her face, playing dress up in mom’s clothes? Maybe they remember a sweet little hand in theirs, a time when that little girl loved them more than anyone else in her world. I can’t tell you what my parents felt that day, but I can tell you this. I felt completely and overwhelmingly blessed in those special moments with each of them. They had loved me, ABSOLUTELY, through every stage of my life. They had prayed for Kelvin long before he was known to me. And that day, they stood by me proudly, crying tears of joy quietly laced with a simple longing for days gone by.
Waiting to Walk: Before my dad walked any of us girls down the aisle, it was known that he would look at us and ask, “Are you sure?” He had promised each of us that if we were not sure we could walk away, hand in hand with him, and he would help us figure it out. Truthfully, I had always thought it both an inappropriate and absolutely essential question. But, if there was one thing I always wanted, it was to be sure. That afternoon, as my dad and I lined up to walk down that aisle, I looked at him and said, “You don’t even have to ask me, I’m sure.” He laughed at me. He believed me. Then he took my hand and we walked.
Walking Towards Kelvin: We walked too fast. There is only one thing I would redo if I did my wedding day all over again –> my dad and I would stroll much more leisurely down the aisle, allowing me to take in that once in a lifetime moment a little bit more. But let me say this. When your groom, your (almost) husband, is looking at you the way that Kelvin was looking at me, you try not to sprint too. Kelvin was absolutely focused. His eyes did not waver or falter. They showed no fear, only love. I absolutely could not look away. And I didn’t want to. So maybe we walked a little too quickly. But I got to make Kelvin mine that much faster.
The Wedding Vows: Kelvin and I decided to write our own vows early on in our engagement. To be honest, there was never a question in either of our minds that that was the right thing for us. We talked a lot about what we wanted the vows to mean – not a simple love letter to the other person, but genuine vows, pledges, and promises to share everything life would give us, both good and bad. Those words, both mine and his, are the most beautiful memory I have of that day. If Kelvin and I truly do honor the vows we made that day, there is NOTHING in this life big enough to separate us.
Dancing With My Family: My family doesn’t dance. Actually wait…my dad does (he says). It’s called the “Shapoopey.” Which means, it’s some locked-kneed, flat-footed twerking (or something similar). It’s strange…and special. And 100% him. So, aside from this shapoopey, my family doesn’t dance. We’re all gangley limbs and awkward head thumps, mistimed claps and poorly placed feet. Poor Kelvin. He is none of the above on the dance floor. Anyway, the night of my wedding my family, my ENTIRE family, danced. I literally watched my mom stand on the edge of the dance floor, internally debating with herself. “Should I or shouldn’t I? I’ll look stupid, people will laugh.” But you know what? She jumped in. And I will NEVER forget the joy I felt as I watched my family dance, completely without inhibitions, truly as if no one was watching.
Driving Away: As the wedding got closer and closer, I had wondered how I would feel as we drove away. Of course, I knew that I would be excited, finally married, embarking on the very beginning of life with Kelvin. But, knowing that the end of the wedding was goodbye as well as a celebration, I sincerely hoped that any tears I cried at the end of the evening would only be comprised of joy. So how did it go? How did I feel at the end of that night? Humbled. Blessed. Undeserving. I was completely overwhelmed by the depths of love that the people in our lives had shown towards us. And as we drove away, tears did pour down my face, as I repeatedly insisted to Kelvin that I, that no one, deserved what we had just been given…an absolutely perfect day.
Photography By: Suzanne Rothmeyer Photography
For more photos of our wedding day, please click here.