fifty-seven Weeks. 13 comments


The hours until my wedding are whittling away.

And let’s be honest, did you really think you weren’t going to get at least one more post out of me before the big day?

With the hours fading and my mind surprisingly calm, I wanted to take a few minutes to jot down some of my last minute thoughts in this calm before the storm.

{one}

Fifty-seven weeks ago tomorrow I went on my last first date (that’s one year, one month and four days – April 27, 2013 – May 31, 2014). At the time I had no idea, though I prayed this on the way to the date. Tomorrow the fulfillment of that reflection on the joyful mysteries will be realized as I find my own husband in the house of the Lord. Those weeks seems so short and so long all at the same time. It all seems so surreal now, so peaceful, so sure. Sitting here thinking about my husband-to-be I wonder how I ever doubted that God knew what He was doing. I doubted and He was faithful – story of my life.

{two}

I don’t think I ever blogged about the moment I knew I was supposed to marry Anthony. That moment came almost two months before he proposed. I had been praying a novena to my girl, St. Thérèse, that would end on her feast day (October 1st) – the best time of year to pray a novena to her. My intention for that novena? Whether or not I should marry Anthony. We hadn’t been together for six months yet, but I had fallen hard and wanted some guidance from the lady who never fails me. On the morning of October 1st I woke up and went upstairs, only to be greeted by my mom. She held out something and said to me, “Is there something you need to tell me?” There, in her hands, was a wedding magazine with my name on it that I’d never signed up for, never received before then and haven’t received since then. When he proposed eight-ish weeks later in the National Shrine of St. Thérèse, there was no denying that my girl was watching out for me and interceding for me. I often say that I owe our entire relationship to her and her intercession.

{three}

As if that last story wasn’t enough, I really, really owe St. Thérèse a big one. When Anthony and I were looking at houses, we found one we loved and put in an offer. At one of the stages of the home-buying process (it is a bit of a blur now), we went all out on the novena-praying front because we loved this house so much. We were simultaneously praying novenas to St. Thérèse, Our Lady of Perpetual Help and St. Joseph. On the last night of the novenas, we finished praying them and headed to the adoration chapel just up the street from where Anthony lived at the time (which is also the church we met at and the school he teaches at). We walked in the empty, dark chapel and turned on the lights. In front of the St. Joseph statue was a single red rose (one of our wedding colors). In front of the Mary statue (a.k.a. Our Lady of Perpetual Help) were eleven white roses (also a wedding color). St. Thérèse sent her roses in front of the two other saints whose intercession we’d been seeking. I nearly fell on my knees in tears, and of course, we got that house.

On Saturday during our wedding Mass we’ll pray at both the statue of St. Joseph and the statue of Mary. In front of Joseph we’ll place a single red rose and in front of Mary we’ll place eleven white roses to honor Mary, Joseph and St. Thérèse.

I should also mention that other than that night neither one of us has ever seen flowers in the chapel, not even in the four years Anthony has been working there.

{four}

If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a thousand times in the last six months: I never realized how perfectly God has been orchestrating all of this. When Anthony left for Lebanon last summer, I had just put in my resumé for a job at my home parish – something I swore I’d never do until all the stars lined up. Well, they finally lined up and I put in my application. I interviewed for the youth minister position while he was gone, but was offered the Director of Faith Formation position instead. After narrowly managing to talk about it from half a world away, I took the job. The job, in so many ways, has been like coming home. Within minutes of him proposing I asked him if we could get married there. I’ve dreamt, for many, many years about getting married there and tomorrow that dream becomes a reality.

They also have these wonderful 15-foot ceremonial doors. I haven’t crossed the threshold yet because I’ve been waiting for my wedding day and to walk through those doors with my daddy. I’ve walked down that aisle hundreds, if not thousands of times, but this time will be unlike any other.

2014-05-29 09.20.30

{five}

People keep telling me how calm I look. If my family is tired of hearing anything it is how often people tell us how calm we look. Normally that would be a good thing, but people tend to tell us (though especially me) this as if it were a bad thing. “You look so calm, is everything alright?!?!!” I feel like other people are panicking for me – but that isn’t what I want.

I went to daily Mass this week where I work (I took the week off) and more than one person has asked me what on earth I was doing there. Where else would I be? The Eucharist is what I seek first, and marrying Anthony isn’t about to change that. Wedding week doesn’t change that. I’m at daily Mass because my peace, my calm, my joy, and my hope come from Him. My strength comes from the Eucharist. Without the Eucharist I am nothing and I can give nothing. So yes, I am calm, calm because I trust Him, I trust His plan, and I couldn’t be more excited to marry Anthony.

{six}

I can honestly say that I love everything about our wedding. I love that, yes, Pinterest inspired some things, but I don’t feel like our wedding was overrun with Pinterest things. I love that our wedding is our wedding, a reflection of us and the love God gives us and shares with us. I know that things will likely go wrong (i.e. the pianist canceling on us this week), but I’ve reached a point where the details are just details. The day is nearly here and my heart is full of joy. I love all of the little things we have planned like the roses for Mary and Joseph, washing the feet instead of the garter hunt/toss, and everything in between. I love that the priest who is preaching at our wedding offered to break up with multiple boyfriends of mine so that I could fulfill my true vocation: religious life. I love it all, but most of all I love that sacramentality of it. I love that we’ve invited so many people to the Mass because that is truly the most amazing part of the entire day.

{seven}

I love that even as I sit down to write all of this out, my thoughts still feel like a jumbled mess. I love that the first time I got teary-eyed all week was when Anthony’s parents met my parents for the first time and my dad prayed over the meal. I love that Christ has been and continues to be at the center of everything this week. I love that it has all come together more beautifully than I could have imagined. I love that people told me there was no way you could plan a wedding in less than a year, and yet we did it in six months. I love that there is so much love and joy in the air. I love the feeling that there is an entire cloud of witnesses descending upon the city to share in our day with us. I love that there are people literally all over the world praying for us and joining us in spirit. I love that peace, joy, love and hope have been the predominate themes this week. In truth, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

{And yes, I’m linking up with Jen with my own wedding rendition of Quick Takes}


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