So this wedding is one that Lee and I will truly never forget. Let me start with Lee's and my morning BEFORE the wedding that afternoon.
There was an intense storm that shook the town of sunny Stevens Point and Plover. I personally was caught in the midst as I was driving and pulled into a near-empty parking lot where I was away from trees (not sure it was the smartest idea, but hey, I couldn't see!) There was a young lady sitting in her car waiting it out and I thought we could at least do this together - I waved and smiled the best I could and popped on some music to help distract myself from the storm. Folks, it was so intense that my body was shaking along with the car that seemed to be gripping the ground the best it could so it wouldn't blow away. After about 25 minutes of that and trying to reach Lee by phone to let him know I was okay, I finally made my way home. I had to drive slowly to move around all the trees and power lines that were now blocking the roads. I texted Sarah Kate to see how things were fairing up in Wausau since they were hit too. Apparently, the house next door to hers where the ladies were getting ready was hit by lighting which started a bit of a fire. What a way to begin your wedding day, right? After Lee and I got ready while using flashlights and candles we started our trek up to Willow Springs Garden in Wausau (45-minute drive from Stevens Point). The highway was full of cars which is not common for our neck of the woods... and we stumbled upon a big trampoline in the center of I-39 - so if someone reading this is missing their trampoline after the storm, check there.
We made it to the wedding venue just before the next batch of clouds decided to wring out. The wedding timeline was completely thwarted by the rain but the bride and groom rolled with the punches. Lee and I did what we could with the timeline but in the end, the Sarah Kate and Matt had to accept what was happening and remember the whole point of the day... they were getting married and that's what mattered. Yes, a few tears were shed in grieving the expectations of what they dreamed of, but in the end, they accepted what it was and it made the day POWERFUL. I wish I could say that the rain was the only thing that went wrong, but there were a few other things as well i.e. Sarah Kate got neon colored pollen on the front of her dress AND their cake knife broke as they were cutting the cake.
The rain continued all the way up to the 4:00 PM ceremony. We didn't get to do any of the organized portraits like planned and had to move them after the ceremony. The guests were understanding and we had an incredible time working through family and bridal party portraits. In the end, we were only 25 minutes off schedule which is pretty awesome for not getting to do anything in the 2 hours we planned before the ceremony! The dinner on the patio under the bistro lights and the afterglow of the storm were perfect, toasts were heartfelt, and the dancing was epic. The wedding day ended up brilliant.
Now, to all the brides out there getting ready for their big day, you can plan the best that you can... but know there will be troubles that happen you can't control... the only thing you can control is your attitude. Feel free to take a moment and grieve the expectations that were set, but don't stay there. Run with what it is and ENJOY the beauty of a perfectly imperfect wedding celebration.