That’s right, this is MY wedding! Weird. I didn’t take any of these pictures, obviously. My good buddy, and occasional assistant Matt Compton took them for us, and did a wonderful job!
So…how did we get here?
Back in March, Jessie and I went over to Europe with my family to visit my brother Ryan, who was studying in Barcelona for the semester. On a plane ride from Barcelona to Venice, Jessie was a little nervous, and wanted me to just talk to her about anything. We had just convinced her family to come to Fort Wayne for the 4th of July weekend. ”Want to just get married that weekend?” I asked. ”Everyone’s already going to be there, and we can totally surprise them.” (I’d be lying if I didn’t admit that the idea at least partly had to come from one of the great episodes of the greatest TV show of all time.) She was in(!), and we immediately started scheming.
A little over three months later, our families and friends gathered for a 4th of July party at our house, a party in which we insisted everyone arrive promptly at noon, under the dubious notion that it was important to be there when our catered fried chicken arrived. It wasn’t a very good excuse, but it mostly worked. At a certain point, we snuck upstairs to change, and my friend Brent gathered everyone in the backyard for “a game.” They surely didn’t believe him, but obliged anyway. We came outside, one of us was wearing a white dress, and a few friends were able to snap some phone pictures of the reaction.
“Sorry about the delay on food,” I said. ”I promise it’s coming, but if you don’t mind, we’re going to go get married real quick.” Our small, crack team of insiders had assembled some chairs and flowers in front of a willow tree at the park a block from our house. After a storm a week prior, our tree had taken some damage, and the whole area was flooded, but we were good to go now! ”Head on over, bring your drinks, and we’ll see you in a few minutes!”
Our friend Brent has been my best friend for over 20 years. First order of business when we got back from Europe was to see if he was game to perform the ceremony for us. He was almost more excited than we were, and he and his wife Elise helped us immensely with a lot of the logistics we needed to figure out. They’re amazing people, and we love them so much. Anyways, apparently my dad had to help him with his tie.
Considering they had no idea ten minutes prior to this picture that they were going to be groomsmen, dammit my brothers look good. Special shout out to whoever manufactures mesh tank tops depicting American flag-tattooed bald eagle astronauts.
After dropping off Jessie to her dad waiting at the back of the aisle, and dropping off those tissues to our moms, we were off! (Special thanks to our friend Carly for making all the flower arrangements and bouquets for us. If she wasn’t already killing it in her current career, she could totally be a kick ass florist for a living.)
Jessie found the following, which her sister (and now my sister! How cool is that?!) Jordan read for us:
“I’m not marrying you because you’re perfect.
I’m not even marrying you because I love you.
I’m marrying you because you are giving me a promise.
That promise makes up for your faults.
And the promise I am giving you makes up for mine.
Two imperfect people are getting married and it is the promise that makes the marriage.
And when our children are growing up it won’t be a house that protects them and it won’t be our love that protects them, it will be this promise.”
And then I had this cued up for Ryan:
“The fierce Dinosaur was trapped inside his cage of ice.
Although it was cold he was happy in there. It was, after all, his cage.
Then along came the Lovely Other Dinosaur.
The Lovely Other Dinosaur melted the Dinosaur’s cage with kind words and loving thoughts.
‘I like this Dinosaur’ thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur.
‘Although he is fierce he is also tender and he is funny.
He is also quite clever though I will not tell him this for now.’
‘I like this Lovely Other Dinosaur,’ thought the Dinosaur.
‘She is beautiful and she is different and she smells so nice.
She is also a free spirit which is a quality I much admire in a dinosaur.’
‘But he can be so distant and so peculiar at times,’ thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur.
‘He is also overly fond of things.
Are all Dinosaurs so overly fond of things?’
‘But her mind skips from here to there so quickly,’ thought the Dinosaur.
‘She is also uncommonly keen on shopping.
Are all Lovely Other Dinosaurs so uncommonly keen on shopping?’
‘I will forgive his peculiarity and his concern for things,’ thought the Lovely Other Dinosaur.
‘For they are part of what makes him a richly charactered individual.’
‘I will forgive her skipping mind and her fondness for shopping,’ thought the Dinosaur.
‘For she fills our life with beautiful thoughts and wonderful surprises. Besides,
I am not unkeen on shopping either.’
Now the Dinosaur and the Lovely Other Dinosaur are old.
Look at them.
Together they stand on the hill telling each other stories and feeling the warmth of the sun on their backs.
And that, my friends, is how it is with love.
Let us all be Dinosaurs and Lovely Other Dinosaurs together.
For the sun is warm.
And the world is a beautiful place.”
And then we read our vows! Luckily I got most of my crying out of my system while I was writing them, so I held it together for the most part:
“I, Colin Joseph Thompson, take you, Jessie Trece Garrett, to be my impossibly beautiful wife.
And then we got some rings!
And then we kissed and were married! AHH!!!
Hugs all around!
My wife is so insanely gorgeous…I’ll never totally comprehend how lucky I am. And no, I don’t plan on ever shutting up about that. Sorry not sorry!
And that was that! We ate fried chicken, drank some beers, and played yard games all afternoon, and it was perfect.