Call it coincidence, call it chance, call it following the wind or maybe just call me crazy. I have always been one to listen when my intuition speaks, and let the universe be my guiding light. Our wedding being a prime example.
The story begins last fall with a booked all-inclusive vacation to Jamaica. We had decided to get away for a tropical, beachy excursion in mid-November and neither of us had been to the western Caribbean. Vacation time approved, airfare and all-inclusive resort booked; the restaurant reviewing commenced. (Food-always my top travel priority!) We had retired to bed early one night at my old apartment. Never having any issue with sleeping throughout the night, I was mysteriously awoken from a dead, deep sleep. Not from a noise or bad dream, but a voice in my head saying ‘Don’t Go.’ I hadn’t discussed nor thought about the booked Jamaica trip that particular day, but I KNEW that the voice in my head was referring to this trip. Not over thinking it at the time, I shortly fell back asleep. Upon awaking the next morning, Patrick (who rarely ever remembers a dream), states he dreamt that we boarded a plane flying to Jamaica. In the dream, he can’t recall what happened, only that after entering the plane we don’t actually make it to Jamaica. Weird! I was awoken with a voice in my head saying ‘Don’t Go’ and he has a dream the exact same night about boarding a plane to Jamaica but never making it to our destination. Wonderful.
I didn’t dare tell Patrick about the voice in my head. Telling him meant immediate cancellation of the trip and I
wanted needed a vacation ! After explaining my dilemma to several friends, the majority agreed it would probably be best to cancel and go another time. I finally admit to Patrick that on the same night he had the dream, I too had a strange warning about the trip. As expected, we cancel the vacation and were able to obtain full refund of the hotel and an airfare credit to use at a later date.
Fast forward a few months; we were in the midst of shopping for a new home after getting engaged. Woah-adult status! Not having the slightest idea of what my wedding should look like, it was the least of my concerns at the time. I was never one to daydream about my wedding day, but if you know me well enough, you would know what song I want played at my funeral. My desire is to lead an impactful life that those around me will remember and yes-I want The Dance by Garth Brooks to be played at my memorial service. At this point we are definitely overdue for a relaxing vacation….remember the airfare credit we still have from our canceled Jamaica trip? It was time to cash in and GO….but where?
We knew our destination should include the beach and that it should be somewhere we’ve both never visited. We decided to put a few locations in an old, tattered ball cap and let fate decide. The three desired and agreed upon locations included Hawaii, the Caribbean islands, and Key West. You probably have already figured out where the story ends, but for those who don’t, we drew Key West, Florida out of the hat. It might be my secret goal in life to own one or it could be my old soul, but hands down my favorite travel accommodations as of late always include a Bed & Breakfast. There is nothing better than a leisurely breakfast, a good café au lait to linger over, and good company to dream about what the day ahead has in store. If you ever find yourself traveling to Key West, stay at The Mermaid and the Alligator B&B. I could go on and on about our stay there, but I will just summarize and say ‘It was perfection.’ It’s no wonder it books up months in advance.
When I think of how busy we were in March with mortgage company demands, closing on the new home and moving in; I don’t know where I found the time to travel plan. I guess one will always make time for the things they are most passionate about. I came upon a review of our B&B that included a couple getting married in the property gardens…..by a concierge……that happens to be a wedding officiate. SAY WHAT? Interest piqued! By this time, Patrick started to ponder whether or not I would ever begin to think about planning a wedding and honestly; it made me want to throw up. Not the idea of getting married, but the idea of how it all would happen. I felt like Carrie Bradshaw being pressured by Aiden to pick a date and location, except Patrick would never suggest we get ‘Maui’ed.’ (Yes, I’ll reference Sex and the City if I want to-you have been warned).
Long story short, I called the B&B and was connected with the concierge that happened to own her own wedding coordinating service. From there, our wedding plans fell into place-as if I had my own fairy God mother waving her wand at me. Location? Beach. Date? The second day into our trip-a random Monday. Photographer? Friend of the coordinator. Cake? Simply white with buttercream frosting from a local bakery. Dress? I will save that for another post. I have embraced the ultimate truth-it’s more fun to let life happen instead of always having an elaborate plan. Our random vacation plans turned into our private beach wedding ceremony/honeymoon and it was perfection.
The question we get asked most often is, ‘You didn’t invite your family? How did they feel about that?’ My family had already bet on me to elope somewhere and not tell anyone about our plans-they know my style well. But the Miranda in me actually wanted to include our closest friends and family in on the celebration. We planned a house-warming party a month before our vacation and invited everyone to ‘Celebrate the engagement and help make the new house a home.’ We had a surprise ‘symbolic wedding ceremony,’ performed by Patrick’s brother, right in our living room in front of the 20 most important people in our lives.
Our wedding story-nothing grand, nothing pretentious. Just a simple union and the beginning of a lifelong adventure together, coordinated by the universe itself.
“But with any journey worth taking, the days of blissfully flowing with the current will eventually be interrupted by changing winds and waves. There may be storms ahead, but with each one, you’ll learn what it takes to huddle together, steady the boat, and navigate your way back home–returning wiser, stronger, and more deeply connected.”