"People say that rain on your wedding day is good luck... Well, when it rains it pours. In our case, however, it also snows. Our wedding weekend couldn't have been any more of an emotional rollercoaster. It was both the happiest and saddest time of our lives. We were hit with some very difficult news regarding his father's health and decided it was best to cancel our original wedding plans so that we could be there for him.
With my sisters having already flown in from their various corners of the world – Rachel from Puerto Vallarta Mexico and Hannah from Colorado – we knew it would be a long time until our families could be together again. And although we wanted to stay by his father's side during his time of need, it was his wish that we not cancel the wedding. So, with all of the food and decorations already bought, family already in town, and his father's insistence that we not delay my initiation into the Loya family, my family worked together to create the most memorable day of mine and Erick's life right at home in my parents' living room.
I can't quite express just what it means to have been married in that house. We moved there when I was in the fourth grade. I remember being sad about moving and the only thing that managed to console me was my mother telling me "You might meet your future husband there! You never know." I don't know why my 9-year-old pre-pubescent self found comfort in that – maybe God was speaking through her – but she was right.
Although the weather conditions had destroyed our Plan A (and B) venue, and the news of Erick's dad had crushed our spirits, getting married in spite of it all seemed so important. It seemed like the very meaning of marriage. In sickness, in health, in good times and bad... love overcomes all obstacles and sees us through even the most difficult times. Through all of the bad news we received prior to that weekend, in the midst of everything crumbling down around us, it seemed so much easier with him by my side. I knew that together we could get through it and be there for one another, no matter the circumstances.
My mother and father did so much more than invest in this big day... They are what inspired it. Their unwavering love for one another has not gone unnoticed. Not once in all the years I've been alive. I have observed their sacrifices, their compromises, and their acceptance of each others' shortcomings for years and years and have known all along that I could only hope to be as lucky.
All in all, we were sad to have to cancel the original wedding plans, but the small, cramped, and intimate ceremony at home was just what we needed in order to make the most of our circumstances.. and it couldn't have been better."
"Humans are far from the only species in the animal kingdom that mate for life. Foxes, penguins, wolves, gibbons, and even fleas are said to find that one special other with which to spend their days. There is some comfort to be found in the fact that we, as humans, are not the only creatures on the planet that mate for life.
We are, however, as far I know, the only one that offer advice on the subject. The most common and resounding piece of advice we hear seems to be that you should marry your best friend. Marry someone with whom you are free to be yourself. Who inspires you to have fun. Someone with whom you can share implicit trust, exciting adventures, your greatest fears, and happiest moments, and all the while feel comfortable knowing there is no better person to be by your side.
Another piece of advice is to not be fooled. Marriage will be not always be easy.
Like all things in life, it will be at times effortless, and at other times hard work. In our relationships, the greatest tool we as humans have is our ability to communicate. To tell each other our worries and strifes without fear of judgement, to regale our wants and successes without fear of jealousy, or when it is needed to simply share a silence--these are the perks of marrying your best friend. You will always have a shoulder to cry on, a laugh to harmonize with, and lap upon which you can rest your tired head. And for the times when the outside world does it's best to bog you down, more than ever you need the unconditional love of your partner. A caretaker in times of sickness, and hand to hold through family woes, and a source of patience and understanding during anything in between. This unconditional love is perhaps the most vital role of a best friend. It is the strongest virtue you can possess and will undoubtedly be the most vigorously tested, time and time again. All of these reasons are why we hear over and over that the luckiest among us gets to marry our best friend. Never before have I had the privilege of witnessing two people more perfectly fit this description.
Now we stand here before your family, your friends, and your god as you prepare to begin the next chapter of your never ending story.
Do you take one another to be your lawfully wedded spouse—to share your trust, your adventures, your fears and happiness--to offer yourself as a shoulder to cry on, a laugh to harmonize with, a lap upon which they may rest their head, and a hand to hold in the best and worst of times--to keep each other safe in the jungle forevermore--your human until death do you part?"
(Spoiler: They totally did.)
"Following the wedding, Erick and I shared our first dance in his father's hospital room. All the while, the winter wedding we had hoped for was coming true outside as the biggest snowflakes I'd ever seen gently fell. It might not have been how we planned it, but nothing ever is and that is what I have learned to love most about life. It will always be unpredictable while our choice to love and choose each other is the only real constant we have. I'm so lucky to have found someone who can roll with the punches and play it by ear with me <3
I love you Erick Loya.
Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers for Erick's father. At this time, we are choosing not to disclose the specifics, but please know that he is doing much better and on the road to recovery. Please continue to pray. We love you all so much <3"