Friday was a special day for our daughter Amy, and a special day our whole family. Really, the word special does not do the day justice.
It was a day I've thought about for twenty-three years. Longed for, prayed for, hoped for. And it turned out much better than I even thought it would.
Here are some highlights.
We met Caleb's wonderful family for the first time. Our whole family was with us at the temple, including our three children, our son-in-law, and our two grandchildren. We arrived at the Manti Temple—the same temple where we were married 29 years ago—about 20 minutes before we needed to be there. The weather was clear and bright, the sky a rapturous blue, near perfect for photographs.
The ceremony was simple, as always, and humbling. As the sealer began to perform the ordinance, it was as if a "rushing, mighty wind" swept the room, filling every heart with reverence, every eye with tears. I was awestruck by an unmistakable, holy Presence. I felt to say with Habakkuk, "God is in his holy temple; let all the earth keep silence before him."
You don't soon forget days like these. There was an assurance that our Heavenly Father approved of the ordinance, the place, the time. An assurance that He was there with us.
Then there was the luncheon at the Manti Tabernacle, built in 1879. The new couple reading I'll Love You Forever by Robert Munsch to the small but appreciative crowd. The groom sweeping the bride off her feet (who was still in her gown) to carry her to the horse drawn carriage.
The reception was perfect. The room was small and intimate, the decorations tasteful (I had little to do with that), and the place was packed. There were kind friends who sacrificed their whole day to make the event happen. We will always be grateful to them. After the reception was over, Caleb lit up the dance floor with a summarial break dance, then the room erupted. We enjoyed dancing for another 45 minutes. Unplanned. It was a blast.
Then the send off. The Honda Civic was decorated with streamers and window paint and half full of balloons. The best part was the cheering crowd. Loud enough for our local police force to get nervous, or at least to wake up the neighbors.
As I watched them leave, I felt that Amy could not be in better hands. What more could the father of a bride ask for?
The first moment I held Amy in my arms, the day she was born, I said, "She is beautiful!" On her wedding day, I held her in my arms and said, "You are beautiful!" The day she was born and her wedding day: Two of the best days of my life!
I don't know how the day could have gone any better.