chronic illnessfaithfamilymarriage

Surprise! We’re Married! Again!

Finally time to reveal my secret project!

Surprise! We are married…again!

As I have shared time and time again, I am blessed with the most amazing husband! He attends 98% of my doctors appointments and is my biggest advocate. When I spent three weeks in the hospital last summer, he spent every night next to me in one of those crappy hospital chairs (although by week 3, he brought in an air mattress!). I just cannot put into words how thankful I am for everything that he has done for me and all that he continues to do but I wanted to try.

We had been throwing around the idea of renewing our vows around of 10th anniversary but I didn’t want to wait that long. This past year has been extremely challenging between the emergency surgery and hellish recovery, countless doctors appointments and treatments, and disability and through it all John has been right there beside me. I tell him all the time what he means to me but I wanted to find a way to show him in a tangible way.

The idea popped into my head to arrange a surprise vow renewal and I just ran with it. I secretly started contacting family to find a date. The date we picked just so happened to be almost ten years to the day of when John asked my dad for my hand in marriage which was the night before my first surgery so it was a happy coincidence. Once the date was picked, I worked with the other church staff to help me with my plan and I enlisted the help of the youth girls to help get ideas and spread the word quietly to get other youth there.

I scoured Pinterest for ideas and Poshmark for a dress. While the whole purpose of the day was to show John exactly how much I love and appreciate him, a perk was getting to wear a pretty dress! I worked hard selling on Posh and eBay to try to cover expenses to keep the party as big a surprise as possible! I will admit that I did a pretty good job! Hidden all throughout the guest room where decorations, table wear, and ceremony outfits.

When the day arrived, I was an absolute bundle of nerves! I swung between wanting to cry and wanting to throw up. Thank goodness my mom was here to help! Well, most of the time she helped. We left home to go “shopping” leaving John at home with my dad. At this point, I think he knew something was up but wasn’t sure exactly what was going to take place. It was a beautiful fall day and I could not have asked for more perfect weather for an outdoor ceremony like we have always hoped for.

Abby had a birthday party to attend at the church so while she was having a ball helping capture the villain at her buddy’s superhero birthday bash, my mom and I worked feverishly getting everything organized for the ceremony. Once the birthday party was over, we had  less than 90 minutes to have all of the decorations up, reception prepared, and to get everyone dressed and in place before our music minister showed up with John. My hands have never shook so badly when trying to put on makeup! My practice with the rocker eye makeup tutorial came in handy!

With minutes to spare, we are in our places! When the car pulled up carrying John, Abby was waiting for him at the top of the stairs to escort him down to our church gazebo. Before starting down the stairs, she told him that there was a surprise for him and that he had t o hold her hand and close his eyes! Seeing her walk him down was one of  the most beautiful and amazing moments of my life that I will never, ever forget. It seemed like all of the trials and struggles we had encountered had come full circle and now I am able to see our beautiful daughter that we had prayed for holding the hand of my husband who is my perfect match in every way.

It was a beautiful and intimate ceremony and our pastor knew exactly what needed to be said and while it took me awhile to be able to get through my vows because of the tears, I was so glad to be able to tell John exactly how I felt and how thankful I am that God granted me such an amazing man to be my partner in life.

The ceremony was short and sweet and it was so fun being able to fellowship with our family, friends, and youth. We had the most amazing gluten-free wedding cake ever before John and I headed out of town and enjoyed a night away. It wasn’t anything big or fancy but just our ceremony, it was a very intimate time together. Get your mind out of the gutter! I’m not talking about THAT!

All in all, it was worth all the stress and the resulting flare. I could not have imagined the day going more perfectly! I can’t wait to see the professional pics! Here are a couple my mom was able to snap on her phone:Outdoor gazebo wedding vow renewal

Outdoor wedding vow renewal parasol picture

mom and daughter vow renewal outdoor picture

I will definitely post more pictures when I get them from my photographer! I can’t wait to relive our magical day!

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11 comments on “Surprise! We’re Married! Again!

  1. Nichole says:

    I *love* this. What a lovely idea, and it looks like it was a beautiful ceremony!

    • Jamee says:

      Thank you! I was worried about whether or not I would be able to pull it off but it was worth every ounce of stress! I could not have asked for a more beautiful day!

  2. Emily says:

    What a sweet ceremony! It looks lovely, and I’m sure it was very special 🙂

    • Jamee says:

      It definitely was a special day! I think having Abby there with us made it even more special! All the pictures will be going up tomorrow!

  3. Helen Richards says:

    10 years is a milestone well worth celebrating. Just celebrated 10 years of togetherness with my hubby (we got married 2 years ago). Like you my life is peppered with less than stellar health and like you I have the enduring support of a loving husband. He dries my tears on the bad days and on the good days he is the first one to say lets get the motorbikes out and hit the road. Aren’t we the lucky ones 🙂

    • Jamee says:

      We are very lucky ladies! I asked him if he would have still asked my dad for my hand if he knew that that first surgery was going to be far from being my last and he still said yes! Amazing men like that are hard to come by!

  4. how sweet! I bet your husband felt so proud to have such an amazing wife who threw together this awesome secret vow renewal! 🙂

    • Jamee says:

      I think he was a little shocked but I think he got over it pretty quick! I later learned, however, that his dad spilled the beans a couple days earlier so he had a little prep time but I still earned major awesome wife points 🙂

  5. […] shared with you last week about my top secret project our surprise vow renewal and this weekend I received the pictures from my amazing photographer Mamie! I was bed bound most […]

  6. Katie says:

    A surprise vow renewal is perplexing to me…why would you surprise your spouse with such an intimate event? This is not a birthday party…this is renewing your love for each other and your future.
    Women may be more accepting thinking that this is a sweet gesture…men, not so much.
    Plus, this type of celebration is about TWO people…so both husband and wife should be on board for such a celebration.
    I never understood why you have to “renew” the vows that you committed to already anyway.
    Just have an anniversary party…!

    • Jamee says:

      My husband has been with me through hell and high water with my illness and I could never had come up with a way to thank him more than before standing before God and our family and friends and professing my love, dedication, and undying devotion to my husband. This was to a tradition “vow renewal.” In the ten years of our marriage, we had been through more than more couples experience in a lifetime. “Sickness and health” was not just a phrase to be spouted out as a part of a vow recited over and over for centuries. Most people these days don’t take it seriously and always have the idea of divorce as an escape hatch in their back pocket. Despite the trial or tribulations that came our way, my husband was their through thick or thin. I have seen so many relationships crumble under the stress of chronic illness. I have a family member who shares a very similar story to mine and after twenty years of marriage, at the first sign of illness, her husband was out the door. My husband has faithful stood by my side. Held my hand when we didn’t know what was to come or whether or not I would even make it out of surgery yet his faith never wavered in God or in us. No words can explain what that means. This was a celebration, an anniversary party, and a public profession of my love, gratitude, and undying love for the man who means more to me than words could every explain. I know the idea is foreign to some. Ok, to most. Even my family had questions but it was honestly the most sacred experience I have ever had. Our daughter was there with us and holding each of our hands. It was a dedication of our family. A dedication to God, to love, and to each other. What God has joined together, let no man tear apart.


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