For my first blog, I wanted to share one of the very special moments that I will always treasure and that made me extremely happy for having the job that I have.
It was back in February, when I was approached by a very extraordinary charity called ‘Gift of a Wedding’. This charity makes wedding day dreams come true for terminally ill people.
They got in touch to ask if I would oversee the planning of the wedding, and also provide on-the-day co-ordination for the Wedding Day of one of their couples.
Initially, I felt a little nervous as I was given two weeks to finalise everything. It also meant I had three weddings in two weeks to co-ordinate, attend and work at – would I cope?
My heart strings pulled however, and I agreed to do it. I should not have worried whatsoever. My anxieties and initial fears totally disappeared when I spoke with the lovely couple, Colin and Cilla. Their courage and love really shone through and their beautiful attitude to life will certainly remain with me for a long time.
The happy couple took their vows at an emotional but relaxed ceremony at the St. Albans Registry Office amongst their dearest family and close friends and even the sun finally shone down on them.
Sopwell House was the chosen venue for their Champagne Afternoon Tea, whose input and attention to detail under the careful eye of Mandy, the Food and Beverage Manager and her amazing team, meant that everything ran like clockwork and my co-ordination was on track and made easy!
The couple enjoyed their Champagne Tea, speeches were made by the groom, best-man, and a close female friend who had come all the way from the USA, and then the pair danced to ‘Disclosure – Latch’ (remix), as it holds many sentimental memories for them. They danced like there was no-one else in the room.
By the time all the well wishes were made and family and friends embraced, the tired but totally overwhelmed couple knew that they had to wind up their magical day.
I realised from the beginning that this day was going to be particularly poignant and special, and it really was just that.
For me as a planner, all my couples are unique and hold their own intrigue, but Colin and Cilla really stole my heart and I will always feel privileged to have been involved in the best day of their lives.
My warmest wishes to you both for a long future filled with love.
Here are some beautiful words from the groom a few days before the wedding, forwarded by ‘Gift of a Wedding’ on his behalf:
“You and your team are simply amazing – where and how do you find these lovely people who give so generously? We have a few days to go yet but we are so happy and can see and also appreciate very much how hard you are working to bring this magic together – it is fabulous what you do and if you all could see just how every moment of every day has been transformed, with Cilla’s focus elsewhere from her cancer, it has been nothing short of a blessing. She is like the girl I knew before cancer took a hold of her. For that I cannot begin to thank you enough as that is a gift I could not have expected – but for myself and all around Cilla, who have witnessed her happiness and mine – I thank you.
Only four more sleeps and you will have made so much more than you possibly imagined. Bless you all. Love and best wishes Colin and Cilla”.
And these touching words that I personally received from the founder of the charity, Patricia, really made it all worthwhile:
“Lydia, thank you so much for everything you did today. You helped us to fulfil a dream and create some wonderful memories. The couple and I wish to thank you from the bottom of our hearts. You’re an absolute star.”
And some further words of thanks from the Information and Assistance Manager of ‘Gift of a Wedding’, Lisa:
“You have been an absolute star for the way you’ve supported us.
It’s wonderful to hear that everything went so smoothly and that Colin and Cilla have enjoyed every minute. That is after all what we are here to do – create special and enduring memories.
We would absolutely love to work with you again in the future Lydia, thank you for believing in us and what we do as a charity, words really cannot express our gratitude.