"I will cherish you as I cherish our union.
I will love you more each day as our love grows stronger.
I will trust you, respect you, and nurture you.
I will support and encourage you.
I will hold your hand and help you should you stumble.
I will laugh with you and cry with you.
I will kiss the tears from your cheeks and wipe them gently from your eyes.
I will offer my shoulder upon which you can rest your weary head,
my arms for your comfort and your protection.
I will love you faithfully through good times and bad times.
I give you my hand as I dedicate my heart, my love, and my life to you
from this moment on."
~Our Vows: 10.09.10
|Picture: Mandy Paige Photography, Make-up: Makeup by Karina, Flowers: Ford-Ellington Wedding and Event Design, Dress: Melissa Sweet, Shoes: Steve Madden Luxe, Bracelet: Jessica Simpson|
The project Bjorn and I did--that I really did--for German class!
|Homecoming our Junior Year. Fall '98|
|I don't think I wanted to flip over his back! Ha! And I'm wearing overalls!|
|Prom Senior Year, Spring 2000|
Three years ago Bjorn and I decided to get married. We never felt like we had to be married. We didn't feel like we needed a piece of paper to "define" our relationship. We had been together for so long and lived together for so long that we felt like we were at that point anyway.
After my dad passed away, we felt differently about getting married. We wanted to do something happy and fun together with our family and friends and celebrate our love. I know it sounds cheesy, but we had all been through a lot. And I know my dad would have loved our wedding! I know he did love it. I felt him there with us that day. I still do feel him with me every day. I know he is happy that we have something beautiful to look back on in the years to come to remind us of how much in love we are and what a great night it was spent with the people we love!
Leading up the our wedding, I was not stressed, I was not anxious, and I was not crazed. I don't know how to describe it. My OCD and anxiety did not play a part in planning any part of our day. I knew exactly what dress I wanted--I saw a picture of what I wanted. I tried it on as my first dress. I tried others to be sure, but I still knew it was the one. I knew what colors I wanted. I had general ideas for other parts of the day, but I trusted the professionals I hired to help me get everything done. The Cincinnati Art Museum was also a huge help, contacting my vendors and arranging everything to arrive. I didn't understand the big stress everyone talked about when they said planning a wedding made them crazy. I made my own place cards and table numbers, among a few other things.
The only thing my mind wavered on were the shoes that I wanted to wear! I drove my sister crazy because I think I changed my mind three or four times! That was my only really nuts-o moment, but I do LOVE shoes!!!
My mindset for the wedding was that it was going to be a fun and exciting day. Nothing could make me feel differently about it. Not if all the power at the art museum went out--we'd light candles. That'd be romantic. Not if it rained the whole day--we'd have the wedding inside instead of outside. Not even if I fell walking down the stairs toward the aisle in my HUGE heels! I'd just do a little jig, give a curtsy, and a smile and be on my way!
The only thing that gave me some stress the day of was not being able to put my veil in my hair and get it to stay. Thank you Mandy, my amazing photographer, for helping me; otherwise, I would have been veil-less! I seriously was going to ditch the whole kit-n-caboodle!
Thinking back on that day, I don't know how I got through that year and a half of planning and the wedding so smoothly before I started taking my medication and before I started therapy. I don't know how I did it, but I'm glad that I did! Maybe it was the excitement I had building up towards the day that made me work through everything. Maybe it was the planning and having control over something so large that made me feel more calm when other things in my life were not in control. Maybe it allowed me to focus on something else other than the loss of my dad and what was going on inside my head.
I don't know what it was, but I am so happy that my experience planning my wedding was not stressful and enjoyable. I am also happy that I have such amazing memories from our special day that I'll never forget. I think it's so strange when people talk about days and memories as magical--but I think I understand why they say that. Not to be sappy, but I really feel like that night was magical.
I remember how I held back tears as I walked down the aisle towards my best friend. I remember how my husband's cell phone rang in the middle of our vows in true Bjorn fashion (one of our guests calling to say he would be late--we all laughed!). I remember dancing salsa with my best friend from high school barefoot on the cool, tile floor at our reception. I remember the sweet, cinnamon taste of our apple cider martinis. I remember my cheeks hurting from smiling so much. I remember my grandpa walking me down the aisle. I remember the smell of my gorgeous flowers. I remember my beautiful, purple smoky eye--I loved my make-up! I remember the crisp, fall colors looking back at our amazing pictures.
So many good memories. Not clouded by doubts. Not clouded by overthinking. Just pure happiness. This is what life should be.
Love and happiness <3 Holly