Week #35 – Wedding
Week 35: Weddings. Tell us about your wedding. You may also talk about your future wedding, the wedding of a relative or shape this question to fit your own life experience.
I loved this challenge! To get to talk about our wedding day is always so much fun!
I met the Texican [aka: Johnnie Lee Henry] at a time when God knew to send him into my life. I was literally sick, and dying. I had been diagnosed with terminal lung cancer and had been given a prognosis of six months to live.
My eldest child was 17. My youngest was 12.
I had not prayed to have healing from the cancer. But I did pray that God would simply let me finish the job of raising my five children. As I was raising them totally alone. [Their father decided after fifteen years of marriage, when the youngest was only 5, that he needed to go "find himself". And he left. Never returning.]
I was literally at the lowest point in my life when Texican showed up. We were penpals first. Then phone friends. But when we came to face to face, well... we've seldom been apart since!
I was 38, and he was 48. And on Christmas Day 1997 he gave me an engagement ring. I promptly said "I will!". [Okay... so that's a lie! I wanted to say "yes" when he asked me to marry him. But I felt I couldn't saddle any man with a wife that was dying, and leaving him with five teenagers to care for! He wouldn't let it go. Telling me he loved me, and he wanted any amount of time left with me. And the kids? He wanted a family of his own. Here he got it. So, after a couple of weeks... I simply gave in! I think it was the meds... or maybe it truly was that I loved him, and I knew, deep down inside, that I needed him!]
We set the date for Friday, February 27, 1998. We were simply going to elope. But before we knew it, we'd told not only the kids, but my sister, and my parents. I, of course, told me best friend. So, we talked to a minister in Covington, Virginia and we headed there for a small, family only ceremony. Well, we ended up with three of the children in attendance [2 were away in school], my parents, my sister and her husband, her daughter and son-in-law, and my good friend Leslie. For a grand total of 9 attendees.
We were all at the church waiting for the minister to show up.
We waited forty-five minutes. And he still wasn't there!
Finally Texican called him. The minister had thought it was a gag! He had talked to me on the phone and took my appointment seriously, until I had told him our names. And then simply erased it from his date book, thinking it was a prank! I mean, I can't imagine why???
A marriage between Cyndi BEANE and John HENRY??? How could that even remotely be conceived as a prank? [tee-hee]
My sister's son-in-law video-taped the ceremony for us. While my sister took still photo's. The three children who were home stood up with us as witnesses.
I did wear an ivory tea dress, and my sister made me a veil.
It was a celebration. Of life anew. For both of us.
On the far left is son Mike, son Chris, the minister [from the back] Rev. Jackie Hollowell, Texican, me, and daughter, Texichick. You can just make out my parents, and my niece seated in the second pew.
Immediately following the ceremony, we left for a week long honeymoon in the Natural Bridge area of Virginia. We also visited the two children who were away in school and unable to attend the wedding.
Miraculously, shortly after we were married, x-rays revealed a dramatic change in the lung cancer. A biopsy confirmed that all that remained was scar tissue!
I have since undergone several biopsy tests, and none have revealed anything more than scarring.
I like to tell everyone that love healed me, and broke the bonds that cancer held on me. Love. A higher power. A miracle. My wedding wrought a change that made me a stronger woman. One that I know can survive anything this life puts before me.
And that's one reason why I love to talk about my wedding. It was a simple affair. No great music was played. No cathedral in which we stood. No designer gown was worn. But love wrought a change in two people's lives.
We will celebrate our 14th wedding anniversary this coming February. And we have so much to celebrate!