First, this happened.
Fast-forward two and a half years… quite a lot happened during that time, and I’m sure I’ll find the time to tell many stories about those two and a half years, but today I’m telling you about the day I said, “I Do.” So just insert lots of courting, romance, too much drinking, and just enough laughter and silliness.
I’ve never wanted a big ring, a big dress, or a big wedding. It’s fine if those were/are your dreams – we are all different, and that’s what makes life interesting. For me, all of those things were just never part of my fantasy about what would make me happy.
In fact, the idea of a big wedding really just made me want to throw up in my mouth a little. No, scratch that… it made me want to Monster Hurl.
As it happened, I was not to be disappointed, and the match between John and myself extended to the lack of desire for pomp and circumstance.
We looked around in our area for awhile, and decided on a lovely park, which was described as one of the most isolated and untouched parks in Travis County, and it did not disappoint. With 2 miles of shoreline along beautiful Lake Travis, we knew when we saw it the first time that it was where we’d come the day we wanted to unite.
How laid back was our wedding? Just to give you an idea… my dress, purchased from Goodwill, was $7.99 plus tax. The dress shoes John wore that day cost more than my wedding dress. 😉 The bouquet? I made it the morning of our wedding from some flowers I picked up at the HEB grocery store right by our house, tied with some craft ribbon I had. I matched it to the flowers on my dress.
We told our pastor to please dress casually – he did not disappoint, and wore one of his signature Hawaiian shirts for the occasion (I could not love him more for that). We told him, and our two witnesses (Elaine, a woman who helped me prepare for my baptism the previous year, and Joan, our pre-marital counselor) to meet us at the entrance to the park on Sunday, March 28, 2004.
When everyone was present, we all loaded up into John’s truck and headed in. At $8 per vehicle, it was a pretty cheap rate for our Wedding Site. 😉
Once inside, we made our way to the spot we had previously chosen, right along the banks of Lake Travis.
One problem. The forecast was for rain, and it was clouding and graying up rather nicely. The clouds above us were ugly and threatening, and we were anxious and nervous.
Our Pastor took his place, and, with our witnesses behind us, we stepped up to him.
He began the service.
Suddenly, like some crazy fairy-tale, the clouds directly above us shifted and opened up, revealing a section of blue sky and the sun, which shone down upon us, pushing against the clouds still bordering.
As that light and warmth hit us, I knew again that my heart had found the right place to live.
I will never forget that day and the promises I made. The way I felt and how hard it was for both of us just to speak our vows without crying like blubbering idiots.
Or how badly my highlights had grown out and that my hair was only a little bit longer than John’s.
Or how beautiful the man at my side was, inside and out.
And how, even when the sun isn’t shining on us, he is still where I want my heart to live.