Saturday, August 6, 2016

Melissa's getting MARRIED!

As I was scouring Facebook for old pictures of Melissa and I to add to a "Melissa's getting married!" post, I came across a fair amount of Melissa and Will pictures, several in which they are kissing. I'm not entirely sure why I have so many pictures of Melissa and Will, or why I have any in which they are kissing, but I'm just going to leave them here for your viewing pleasure and pick back up with my post at the bottom... Enjoy!

I guess the thing about having so many pictures of Melissa and Will is, it means I've been able to witness their love over the long haul. They met at nearly the same time Stephen and I did while Melissa and I were living in the sorority together - I knew Will as "the tall one with dark hair from Big Blue" before he was "Will, Melissa's boyfriend". I heard about every flirt, every kiss, every dance, every argument, every story... I wiped her tears and listened to her giggles and started planning their wedding over six years ago. More than that, having been there from the beginning, to watch them fall in love and grow and change and adapt and adventure, I can testify first hand that Will and Melissa, what they have - it's the real deal. It's the love that defies adolescence and time and distance and obstacles. The love of books and movies. And their story will end in 'Happily Ever After'. In case their Disneyland engagement wasn't already proof of that.

To Melissa, on your wedding day,
It's here! The day you've waited how many years for?! I don't think I knew the true beauty and importance of a wedding day until long after my own. There is rightfully so much hype and excitement, nerves and anxiousness leading up to a wedding. Planning and details... Though I have no doubt you haven't lost site of the true purpose and meaning of the day, maybe, similar to me, it will take some time before it really sinks in.
Today, you are going to walk down that aisle, beautiful as ever, and look upon the man of your dreams, your husband, and you will think to yourself that you will never love him more than you do in that moment. Even though you've heard it said before, that you'll love him more and more with each passing year, you won't be able to fathom it - 'surely it is not possible to love him more'. But I'm here to tell you that "they" are right, and it sure is something to look forward to.
The morning after your first big fight, when you reach the day of a long awaited accomplishment, when you see him holding your baby for the first time... From the little things to the big things and everything in-between... Years from now you will look at Will and think it almost silly to think you loved him then, today. It gets so much better.
I have so many prayers for your marriage, Melissa. Prayers for love and silliness, peace and resolve. Prayers for intimacy and oneness, adventure and fun. Prayers for the inevitable hurts and difficult times. Prayers for the future, change, chaos, the unknown. Prayers for babies and joy and love you can't yet know.
Melissa, you are worth every ounce of love and attention you receive today. Humble and reserved you may be, but today is your day and I hope you feel loved and adored by all! Because you ARE! Optimistic, uplifting, happy, genuine, silly, kind... You are the definition of "sweet" (and the definition of an elementary school teacher!) and what an honor it is to know all that personally! I never would have guessed when we met seven years ago that I would be standing up with you at your wedding (or that you'd be standing up with me at mine!), but oh how I longed to be friends with the beautiful, bubbly brunette, and how grateful I am that God works people into our lives in ways we couldn't have foreseen. You have always been such an encouraging and steady friend to me, Melissa - through our time as Kappas, across miles and miles of ocean, transcending life circumstances and stages... You have always been there to call, to text, to rejoice with, cry to and request advice from. I don't know what my college experience, my relationship with Stephen, my friendship with Erica and my pursuit of God would have looked liked without your presence. You have been there for it all, continuing to shower me in love through moves and changes and babies and I am a better person for it.
Don't ever get to thinking that you're the only lucky one, Melissa. Will hit the jackpot with you and I am sure he will wake up every morning pinching himself in disbelief that such a beautiful and incredible woman exists (and is in his bed!) Cheers to the two of you on this day! Cheers to the lucky ones! You are loved! A whole hellofa lot!

And now for all those pictures of us I went looking for in the first place!

And, these... Because I feel like it should be mentioned here that at Erica's wedding in 2014, drunk Will told a drunk Stephen of his plans to propose in Disneyland after asking for your father's approval and then sober Stephen couldn't remember any of the details so I had to wait for your "we're engaged!" text like the rest of the world.

Now, I think there's a wedding I should be getting ready for...

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