“My greatest blessings call me mom.”– Unknown.
I’m sure most girls start thinking about their wedding day from a very young age. In their minds they conjure up an image of their prince charming. They fantasize about the perfect, jaw dropping wedding dress and see themselves as a captivating, fairy-tale beautiful bride. As they grow up they stop merely imagining their big day and start searching for ideas. They begin to form opinions and before long they are able to recognize what they like and don’t like. Eventually they have a well thought out blue print of exactly how they want their wedding day to be, right down to the smallest detail. Every young girl’s dream wedding is as unique as they themselves are.
Years of dreaming, imaging and planning make most brides feel pretty confident and prepared for the mammoth task of organizing the wedding of her dreams. These brides naturally have the input and support of their grooms. In addition each bride has her own carefully selected bride tribe, which is usually made up of her bridesmaids and the mother of the bride and sometimes the mother of the groom. The bride tribe needs to be on constant standby throughout the organizing phase and on the big day in case their help is required.
I believe all mothers of a daughter think about their little girl’s wedding day. I know I did. When my twin girls (Jaclyn and Kristen) were still in nappies, I prayed for the Lord to handpick for each of them a godly man, filled with the fruits of the spirit, to treasure them and love them unconditionally. I know my daughters prayed for this too. God in His infinite wisdom has a perfect plan for every one of us. For my daughter, Kristen, that meant kissing a few frogs along the way but God is faithful, He answered our prayers and brought her prince charming into her life at the perfect time.
So, with a groom handpicked by God I expected both the build up to the wedding and the wedding day itself to be smooth sailing for this mother of the bride. I imagined the day over and over, and knowing that this was undeniably a match made in heaven gave me a wonderful sense of peace. Yet as the big day slowly crept closer the enormity of it all made me feel unsteady to say the least. I realized that once the ceremony was over, life as I knew it would change. I would no longer be her best friend, comforter, confident and cheerleader, that privilege would be her husband’s. Of course I knew that is exactly as it should be but my heart had no idea how to let go.
The big day arrived a lot faster than I had anticipated. Nothing could have possibly prepared me for the tsunami of emotions that had me fighting for control, to keep my composure and for the strength to let go. The absolutely breathtakingly beautiful bride was my baby girl, my angel, all grown up, madly in love, fully prepared for the next exciting chapter of her life. In this chapter I need to take a step back and cheer her and my new son in law on from the side-lines. I felt happy and sad, proud and panicked, grateful and stunned. So many conflicting emotions, but of them all the most powerful was love. A love so pure, so unconditional, so selfless that it overpowered every other emotion and gave me the strength to let go. I won’t pretend it was easy but love really does conquer all.
Being the mother of the bride was not all glitz and glamour but it was undoubtedly a precious privilege. My daughter’s fairy-tale wedding was very special and definitely unforgettable. To see Kristen looking so beautiful, radiant, free, self-assured and blissfully happy blessed me beyond measure. I am so grateful I got to raise her. My role in her life might have changed a little but the love I have for her is unchanging, unwavering, unconditional and never ending.
“Angels are often disguised as daughters.” – Unknown.