What a beautiful wedding it was. So full of happiness and good wishes and love. So many people flying in from out of state or out of town. So much bonding and re-bonding between all of the Oregon people. So many blessings spoken over the (very) happy couple.
You know what I think? I think that they deserve all of this and more. They have each dealt with some very difficult life situations and through it all they have stayed kind, compassionate, truthful and loyal. They are the sort of people you want to share your joys with and the kind you want to call when things aren't working. Because they're real and really human.
everyone trying not to cry while pictures are taken.....
And then I walked down to the field where the ceremony was taking place. The photographers were hard at work taking portraits of the bridal party and family. It was an honor to stand with Jessica as part of her family.
And then it was 5:00. The perfect time for an outdoor, summer wedding, I think. But perhaps that's just because my wedding was also at 5. It was overcast and cool, for Texas, but this particular light made everything glow and the green fields and trees look even lovelier--cool and deep--than they might have in blazing, tortuous late-afternoon heat.
Jessica was walked down the aisle by her nephew and niece (and Penelope's favorite friends) Zion and Brennan. When I saw her begin to walk, stepping out from behind an ancient shade tree to The Frames singing, "Star, Star", I couldn't help it; the tears just welled over and came pouring down. I'm not sure when I've cried like that at a wedding. Possibly, never. I was just so incredibly proud of her.
And she looked so strong and beautiful and sure. Jordan (the groom) cried too.
The ceremony was beautiful. On the short side, but packed full of tender words, private vows whispered between bride and groom, some of us stepping forward to sing Jess's favorite hymn (Come Thou Fount), an emotional blessing from Jordan's father, and then kiss after kiss at the end. Seriously--the kissing went on and on.
And then two-by-two everyone tumbled back down the aisle to the perfect recessional, "Treehouse". As soon as they reached the end they started dancing.
And laughing. And dancing again and then more hugging and more laughter. And then happy, happy tears.
It was all so breathtaking.
And then, after more pictures and while the rest of the wedding party and the guests walked across the field to the reception, Jordan carried Jess off to an undisclosed location. Where I happen to know that there was much making out. I know this because I reapplied her lipstick and she looked exactly like someone should who has just married the right man: radiant and just a tad bit sheepish.
The cake was beautiful and fun. I think it was red velvet-- I didn't have a huge appetite for some reason (figured it out later, didn't I!), and so after eating some of the barbecue and potato salad I just had a cupcake. Which had a cream center and was yummy!
There was dancing and children running around and people eating and talking and laughing. And rumors of really good tequila being artfully slipped into the ice tea and lemonade. But of course I know absolutely nothing about that. Nothing. Don't even ask.
It was such a happy, beautiful day. Exactly what Jessica and Jordan deserved. What fun and funny memories I will always have of this weekend!
See? The terrible sickness that came on just a few hours later was no match for this kind of day.
When I think of Jessica and her story, this quote from William Stafford comes to mind:
"I have woven a parachute out of everything broken"
Yes you have, lovelygirl, you really, really have.