Today, I received an email from a wedding company advertising “the dress.” The thing is, I’ve been married for over three years! It was probably four years ago when I signed up to be on some email list for something wedding related. Receiving the email made me ponder the whole wedding industry now that I am several years past that “phase” of my life. There was a time, though, when finding the exact shade of aqua blue ribbon was incredibly important to me. I can even recall sitting in a graduate class two months before my wedding and ordering every type of blue candy imaginable offline. It is truly a miracle that I managed to pull an A in all of my classes that summer!
So, was all of the color coordinating, negotiating, and money spending worth it? Everything ran like a well-oiled machine that August day due to my paranoia about planning everything out well in advance. My ribbons matched my bridesmaid dresses. Their silver earrings matched their silver shoes. The flowers were arranged perfectly, and the food was delicious. I even have a gorgeous wedding album and pictures to prove it!
However, the part of my wedding planning that I am most proud of is the part that was done in the conversations Matt and I had for months before we were even engaged. By the time we went to our Engaged Encounter retreat, not only had we already discussed all of the big things every couple should talk about, we also had established a strong spiritual foundation. The fact that our marriage is grounded in our devotion to God, has been instrumental in helping us to move forward after Isabelle passed away. With regular prayer and complete trust in God to guide our married life, we have been able to follow the path He has created for us. Even when we felt like we had hit rock bottom in those first days after Isabelle went home to be with Jesus, it was ultimately our faith that allowed us to push forward.
We are so thankful that our parents emphasized that a relationship with God should be a priority. We are thankful that they modeled for us what a God-centered marriage should look like. We are thankful that we were each given opportunities to grow in our faith whether that be through a Catholic school education, youth ministry, or at home. We are thankful because it is that foundation that set the stage for a God-centered marriage. It is that God-Centered marriage that helped us get through the most difficult obstacle either of us have ever encountered. As a result, our beautiful daughter Isabelle was baptized and now prays for her parents from heaven. What a tremendous blessing to have our own personal saint!