by Cynthia V.Mitchell, M.Ed, owner ABFW
When I received a call from the family of our couple, I was hard pressed not to make time to sit with them all, even on the day before Thanksgiving.
The couple was in Naples for the holiday and that time was their only availability. Little did we know at the time that all our plans would be amended as hurricane Irma made her appearance the week before their wedding date in September.
But nothing dampened the spirit of this couple who, being hearing impaired, were no stranger to challenges many of us never have to face.
And our resilient and hard-working ABFW team of vendors worked together again for the good of all to reschedule the wedding for the following April 2018.
The groom's sister in-law was a multi-talented event planner for huge corporations, and she wanted only the best for her brother and wife-to-be. Her wisdom regarding the couple helped us shape their choices.
And his mother, also present at the initial consultation, guided me to learn quickly the art of communicating by putting pen to paper to outline every detail from that meeting. The bride-to-be would see my questions and write her answers and in that manner we planned a beautiful wedding for this remarkable couple.
We planned everything in detail from the rehearsal to the reception.
It was a family affair with the couple, his mom, his sister and even his brother-in-law adding valuable information regarding the plan B “venue by the Gulf”.
After the initial consult and throughout the initial planning phase there were many calls between our team and the couple using a tele-interpreter. Patience and clarification were called upon and, step-by-step, every detail came together.
We even arranged lodging for our couple and their guests who wanted a choice of two hotels.
April came and memories of the original wedding date were far behind us. Still our team was presented by another challenge from Mother Nature. For on the day before the wedding, red tide visited our shores, so again we had to move the ceremony off the beach to their family's gulfside home. Our photographer knew how much they wanted ocean photos so between the ceremony and the reception he followed their limo for a quick beach photo get-away, and that made all the difference to them.
The groom was so very happy, he set the tone for so many poignant moments to come. The quiet with which the bride and future her mother in law walked down the aisle cannot really be fully expressed here. Let me say, for me it was so very powerful.
The couple was ecstatic and so loving to one another. The interpreter we hired was astute and tireless. While Rev Bob officiated, the interpreter signed his words.
It wasn't until they "signed" their vows that Catherine, then our wedding day of onsite coordination manager, and I welled up with tears. Throughout our years as wedding planners and officiants we had been privileged to witness great love at thousands of weddings. Yet there was something about seeing vows expressed in sign language that opened the heart to the depth of their meaning.
The couple taught us to sign "I love you" which we did often at the reception.
The couple and their family were so pleased with everything and made that known to us in reviews that we shall treasure. The couple was smiling ear to ear when we left the reception as were our hearts.
It had been a long planning cycle, and we worked through every detail, and that labor of love on both of our parts had proved so fulfilling.
Our company will celebrate twenty years of success this year. It's couples and families like these that give meaning to. those years.
For more information on how we can help you create your Beautiful Florida Wedding please contact us.