True Love Never Gets Old

            Twenty-five years ago, on the stormy morning of October 20th, two Delta High School dropouts arrived at the Delaware County Court House. They filled out several forms and were directed to a room full of filing cabinets. It was the first time the woman working had ever married a couple. She called the man “Sharon” instead of his actual name, Shannon. He was twenty and his soon-to-be wife was nineteen. Their one-year old daughter was waiting for them at his parents’ house. Two supportive friends stood by their sides as witnesses. Many people told them they were too young. Many people told them it would never last. Many people told them they had no idea what they were doing. Her father thought he was a bad kid and did not approve. Her mother told her that just because they had a child together didn’t mean they had to get married. His parents were happy for them, but deep down they were also a bit skeptical. It is also commonly thought that rain on the day of the wedding is a bad omen. They didn’t let any of this prevent them from saying “I do”; however, it was not their ideal wedding.

            Despite the foreboding circumstances, I am here to tell you that sometimes people find true love very young. Sometimes it rains on the happiest of days. Sometimes, the baby in the baby carriage comes before the marriage and the marriage still manages to survive. Sometimes, life doesn’t go as we planned, but it turns out better than we could have ever imagined. I can confidently tell you all of that because that young couple was my parents, who just celebrated their Silver Anniversary. They not only proved everyone wrong by having a strong marriage. They also did very well despite their unfortunate situation as teenagers. They own the house I grew up in. My sister graduated from college with a business degree, and I am currently a freshman at DePauw. They always made sure we were taken care of and able to achieve our goals no matter how difficult it was for them to make it happen.

            My sister and I are so grateful for them, we wanted to give them the wedding they always dreamed of and very much deserved. We had no idea how big of a project we were taking on. I never pictured myself planning a wedding, while I was studying for midterm Exams, and it was very challenging to get everything done. My sister being two hours away and me being stuck at college proved to be a major obstacle. It forced us to procrastinate quite a bit. We were fortunate that our family and our parents’ very supportive, lifelong friends were willing to help us. It was quite the group project.

            I served as the planner and assigned everyone specific tasks. I was also sure to invite my parents’ friends and family that live far away very early on before we had anything else planned. My parents were ecstatic to see their friends who moved to Florida after nine years. Even if nothing else had worked out, I would have been happy with just that. My aunt and cousin flew in from North Carolina and helped a lot with the decorations in the week before the vow renewal. My sister and grandma made all the center pieces. We used my grandma’s church and her pastor so graciously volunteered his service. My mom’s friend contributed cupcakes for the reception. My boyfriend made the guest book. It came together beautifully; a rustic, fall wedding with purple and silver accents.

             It was an extremely good bonding experience for all of us. My sister, my best friend, and I took my mom dress shopping at David’s Bridal. We ended up buying the first dress she tried on. It fit her perfectly and looked stunning. It was one of those meant to be moments. Then, I got to force my sister to wear a matching dress with me, which was super enjoyable for me. Each of us walked one of our parents down the aisle. It was a powerful moment to watch them renew their vows. To be able to be there and experience their love first hand, has been very impactful in my life. It has given me an everlasting faith in true love, which is hard to come by in today’s world.