These posts are not scheduled because I never know when the words are going to come to write the next one, hence the lengthy break in between this and the last one. This may be a long series and I hope that no one has tired of the continuation, but each of these posts are a step in continuing the grieving and healing process for me. They are as much for my benefit as they are for anyone else’s, and I hope you will continue to humor me.
The two weeks leading up to the wedding are a blur in my memory. I recall dad being admitted to the hospice center after an intense blood sugar spike due to medication effects. Mom feared putting together a wedding and funeral in the same week and I began wondering if my grandfather would be walking me down the aisle. He was there a few days while they got his sugar under control and he and mom got a crash course on insulin injections. Somewhere in the course of all this we rang in the new year and I had my bachelorette party.
With his blood sugar in check, dad was better than he’d been in a while. In a week’s time we went from fearing he wouldn’t make it to the wedding, to realizing he had more time left than we’d been thinking. The change was unmistakable and we were praising God.
The First Look
On the morning of the wedding I awoke early, having only fallen asleep a few hours prior. My maid of honor and I began getting ready and drove to the church after getting our hair done. I did my makeup, slipped into my dress, and stood still while the millions of little white buttons were done up the back. Then came the jewelry, the veil, the shoes… and I was ready.
Everyone was seated and I was hiding around the corner with my maid of honor, waiting for the doors to close. The nervous excitement of this moment cannot be put into words. As I walked up to closed doors and took dad’s hand, he and I both choked back tears. He told me how beautiful I was and held me close as he prayed for me. Then he made sure I remembered how we were supposed to walk. He was nervous he might lose his balance and I promised to hold him tightly. As I wrapped my arm in his, he was frail but determined and in a split second I thought of all the times he’d held me when I was frail.
I heard Be Thou My Vision begin and knew that was our cue. The doors opened and we stepped out.
And just like that, I married my best friend. With my father standing proudly alongside us.
Our father-daughter dance was something I’ve been thinking about and dreaming of for as long as I’ve been dreaming of having a wedding. And when it became a reality, it did not disappoint in any way. We cried and laughed together, dancing to My Girl. And when it was over, he said to me, “That was over too soon, I want to keep dancing.”
As I look back on this beautiful day, nearly five months ago now, I cannot help but thank the Lord for blessing us so greatly. And I am so grateful to everyone who helped to make it possible to plan an entire wedding in 5 weeks and to share these sweet memories with my father who would pass away within the following month…
Special thanks to Nicki from Nicki Metcalf Photography for blessing us with these beautiful and treasured photos.