Our second dance…

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Our wedding took place in Mexico. We chose to get away because we love to travel and I am a sucker for blue water. So off to the Caribbean we went to say our vows and pledge ourselves to each other. We chose the location off of pictures and reviews. I had a fellow nurse tell me about her dream wedding in Mexico so I decided to look into the same resort where she had her wedding at just on the opposite side of Mexico. I narrowed the resorts down to our top three and from there I showed John the pictures and let him pick his favorite. Ironically, we picked the same one without knowing so off to Tulum it was! We had about 1 year and a half to plan our wedding in Mexico which was more than enough. We gathered 60 relatives of ours and friends and headed south in the dead of winter in the beginning of January. Plane by plane all 60 of us arrived and made our way to Dreams Resort and Spa in Tulum; an all inclusive resort right on the Caribbean.

The plane ride there was one that I will never forget. We flew with John’s side of the family which consisted of his sister, his brother, his brothers girlfriend and his mom and Tim. On the way to the airport his brother (also the best man) began to feel ill. “Uh Oh” is right. Our wedding was 4 days away and he was having symptoms of the flu. As soon as we got to the airport he began feeling sick. We had to hide him and the bag he got sick in in fear that they wouldn’t let us travel! It was quite a show. While in line to get onto the plane there was also a drunk girl knocking into everyone. This wouldn’t have been an issue if we didn’t have to turn around the plane right as we were about to take off because this drunk girl decided to mix her drinks ultimately landing her in a passed out state. Of course she was ok, but as they had the ambulance people and cops come escort her off the plan John’s brother who was sitting behind her could not hold in his sickness so he got up, green in the face, made a fleeting attempt to run to the bathroom and passed out. “Did he just pass out?” said John. I looked at him looked at all the people staring and freaking out and got up.

He somehow got himself up and made it to the bathroom. As he was in the bathroom I was outside the bathroom speaking with the Pilot telling him that “he’s just anxious with all the commotion and hates flying he must be feeling sick”… that was the best excuse I could come up with to keep him on the plane and get our butts to Mexico. Thankfully it worked and thankfully his bug was only about 24 hours. His girlfriend also ended up catching it but it was short lived, so they were able to enjoy the rest of their trip.

Upon arriving in Tulum we had some car troubles… a little drama always occurs when you travel. It’s something to be expected. It’s also a part of our wedding story I will skip right over. We finally got to the resort with champagne in hand and a bottle of wine waiting for us in our suite by the water life was perfect and we couldn’t have been happier. This was exactly what we wanted. We got to resort rather late, due to our car issues, but still decided to order room service and then go for a walk around the resort. Even in the dark it was beautiful. It was everything we could have dreamed of and looked even better in real life than it did in pictures.

The days flew by leading up to our wedding. We had events or adventures set up for every day that everyone was there with some built in relax days. We saw the most beautiful clear water bay, we swam with hundred year old turtles, we got to see the centoes and even got lay around and do nothing. We saw some amazing shows and ate at some tasty restaurants. We couldn’t complain, we were all having fun and letting loose.

Then came our wedding day. We woke up to a beautiful sunny morning. John and I couldn’t believe the day had finally come. From early morning we went our separate ways and spent the morning hanging out with our bridesmaids and grooms men. Us girls went to the spa and got our hair and make up done while the guys ate out at one of the resorts restaurants and had a few. It was some quality time before the big moment. Three hours before we had to walk down the aisle a nice big storm cloud began to blow our way. Just like that we had to make a decision to have our wedding outside or inside. We decided with some long conversations via the phone that we came to get married on the beach and that’s what we were going to do rain or shine. Right before it was time for me to walk down the aisle the rain poured. I prayed to our fathers that they would let the rain stop for 20 minutes so we could get the ceremony finished. They must have been there that day because right as I was about to walk out the rain stopped, for EXACTLY 20 minutes. We walked out of the ceremony as it began to drizzle again. In some ways I was comforted to know that they were there, and perhaps the rain was the only way for me to know for sure.

The reception itself was lovely. We had relatives come from Italy, London, Vermont and even friends from Finland. It was something wonderful to see everyone in one room to celebrate us. The speeches John’s mom made, my step-dad made, John’s brother made and my best friend Mackenzie made were well written, touching and put a tear or two in our eyes. My dad and I dances to the song from the little mermaid and John and his mom dances to a country song.. “my wish”. The it was time for me and John to dance to our first song as husband and wife (by band of horses) and he snuck in his air guitar.  The cake was beautiful the food was good and we danced the night away until we got kicked out.

We had all planned to meet at the outdoor bar by the beach within the next half hour for some karaoke and dancing. John and I returned to our room to change into something a little more comfortable. As a lay on the bed waiting for him to put his shoes on as he sat on the step I heard a familiar song come on. The song was by Jimmy Eat World, called hear you me, and I realized just then that John had already put on his shoes, He was just sitting there. I put down my phone and watched him as he stood up and faced me. His cheeks had streaks of tears.. and just like that mine came too. He reached out his hand and I stood up taking it. We danced out second dance that night to that song. In memory of all those we have lost… but especially in memory of our fathers… and just like that our wedding night was complete with that one song. They both were there with us.. just like everyone else who came to Mexico… we just couldn’t see their smiling faces is all.




Our Engagement Story

Haven’t written in a while so I figured I would write about one of the most memorable and unforgettable moments of my life.. our engagement.

It all started with a trip to Italy. It was the first time J had ever been to Italy and to visit my hometown located smack dab in the middle of Italy and in the middle of mountains. This was where I was born and grew up until my sister and I left for America with our mother. Our town is unique In a variety of ways, but to me it is particularly special because it holds my favorite place in the entire world. On top of the main Mountain in our small town lies a castel that was bombed and destroyed during WWII; however, through all the wars and earthquakes it had undergone, it has managed to retain one tower. From the center of town to the top of the tower takes about 1.5 hours to reach. It’s my favorite place earth because I remember going up that mountain with my father but also because once you reach the top you can’t help but smile because of how georgeous the surrounding view is. In that moment your speechless because of the beauty that surrounds you.

When we arrived to Italy it rained for several days. This postponed our climb up the mountain and to the tower. Finally the rain had stopped and we prepared to make the walk uphill to reach the top. There was a group of us that decided to make this journey together. This group consisted of my sister el, my boyfriend at the time J, my two Italian friends and myself. The five of us took off and began the brutal walk uphill in the summer heat. Although tretorous, the climb was equally beautiful. As you get higher and higher you begin to see the little town where we came from fade off into the distance. It’s was a georgeous sight with ever growing anticipation to reach the top.

After about 1.5 hours we reached the final climb; the stone steps up to the tower. I let everyone go ahead of me and when we finally got up there it felt as though a breath of fresh air had just hit me. It was just as I remembered and more beautiful than ever having shared it with my significant other. We stayed a while and chatted as we took in the view. I stepped next to j and joked with him saying “this would have been the perfect spot to ask me” he joked back saying “yeah it sure would have”.
Our time was up and everyone began to make their way down the tower steps back to earth. Oddly enough I was being blocked out making me second to last in line to walk down the steps. Just as I reached the first step I felt a pull on my arm and j said “little did you know that I did have something planned” thinking it was a joke I gave him a playful shove and said “not funny” as I once again tried to make my way down the steps. To my surprise I felt another tug on my arm as J pulled me back and had a ring in his hand up to my face saying “I’m not joking”. Shocked and wordless I stood there looking at him as he got on one knee and said “Elisa, I love you with all my heart and I want to spend the rest of my life with you.. will you marry me?” I smiled (still speechless) grabbed his shoulders to stand him up and said “give me a hug”. He did just that as I said “why do you look so nervous?”. He responded “because you haven’t given me and answer yet” and just like that I said “of course I will”. And so began a new chapter in our lives.

All I could do after was smile. As we walked down the tower my sister had a handful of wild flowers picked ready to hand me. Our excitement was enormous as we ran hand in hand down the moutinain side back to earth.. I don’t think anything in my life has been as picture perfect as the moments that followed and the unexplainable excitement and happiness that we felt running down the mountain. It was dreamy… it was a day I will never forget.