The nervous groom waited at the bar, eager for the rest of the wedding party to join him. The group he was waiting for was small, but they are the dearest people in his life: his 13 year old son, Sean and his beautiful bride. Flushed and fidgety, his eyes continued to scan the lobby for the pair as we talked. Daniel Anderson, this soon to be newlywed, was to be married within the hour. The well laid plans for the day hinged on the trio making it to the courthouse on time and Anderson was anxious for the party to gather.
Daniel met his bride, Carrie Reitz in middle school, but this isn’t a love at first sight tale. The pair were nothing more than amiable classmates as children and lost contact with each other after their school days ended. Their paths did not cross again until 2014 when an unexpected medical problem led him to the hospital where Carrie worked. The former classmates decided to catch up over a quick cup of coffee, which turned into a three hour visit to Starbucks. As they sipped and chatted, Daniel felt his affection grow for the Carrie. It wasn’t just Daniel that sensed the special connection being formed, Sean, along for what was meant to be a brief meeting, felt it too. As the father and son headed for the car at the end of their time with Carrie, the boy urged his father to ask her on a date. It was advice his father took.
Shortly after, the pair had their first date, and from that day forward, Daniel and Carrie have been nearly inseparable, having spent only two days away from each other after their initial date. As the groom recounted the first chapter of his love story, his son Sean joined us. The polite young man with a beaming smile needed help with his tie. As the three of us made the final touches to the boy’s outfit and boutonnieres were pinned on the father and son, the love they had for each other was apparent. The boy eased his father’s worries about the schedule, assuring him that his bride looked beautiful, and was nearly ready to join the pair in the lobby.
As we readied Sean for the ceremony, he shared with me his deep affection for Carrie. She has been an important part of his life for years. Tragedy made the trio grow closer when Carrie lost her father and Sean lost his mother within days of each other. They leaned on one another for support and their bonds deepened. Soon, the three of them were tightly woven into the fabric of each others’ life, coming together to form a loving family.
With the men ready, the three of us waited in anticipation for the bride to appear. We kept our eyes fixed on the elevator, eager to see Carrie in her finery. Just when we thought we could wait no longer, so intense was our excitement to see her, she appeared. She glided through the lobby with an unmistakable aura of happiness surrounding her. Indeed, she was worth the wait; father and son wore expressions of admiration on their faces as she approached. The trio briefly posed for a few photos before whisking off to the ceremony that would make the three of them a single unit. They shared hugs between the snaps of the camera’s shutter and each brushed away tears of joy between new poses. Before long, with each of their pockets filled with tissues from the front desk, the group was out the door and on to the courthouse.
There are few things more hopeful than a wedding. The rite cements the pledge that two people make, saying “come what may, we are in this together.” Or, in this case, three people. Cheers to the Anderson family, may the future bring you nothing but joy.