Wedding Recap: My Mother

I will never know how many hours my mother poured into our wedding.

045_GettingReadyEvery time I came home to visit my parents she was knee-deep in another wedding-related project. When I asked her how long it took her to remove the intricate beading on a back up veil she purchased in case the veil I ordered didn’t come in on time, she said, "No time at all! It’s not a big deal, really."

I assure you it took her hours.

When I asked her how long it took her to tie flip flops together and stamp decorative numbers on feminine labels to note their sizes, she replied, "Just a little while. I had a movie on, so it went by quickly!" 098_Details096_Details(The flip flops served as "dancing shoes" for the women to wear to dance at our reception.)

She went wedding dress shopping with me… many times.

She helped me and my sister tie together programs and menus and secretly finished the majority herself after we went to bed.

She bought me numerous pairs of wedding shoes when I was in a frantic hunt and was convinced I would never find the blush pink pumps I wanted.

She helped convince my dad that chiavari chairs were a very important thing.

She calmed me down during my first dress fitting when I tried on my dress two weeks before the wedding and it was several sizes too big.

She told me it was okay to cry when we were sitting in the emergency care clinic the day before the wedding009_FormalsShe was a best friend, a mother, a confidant.

I know I touched on it briefly in a previous post, but I was blow away by the way my mother looked on our wedding day.

I was stressing out over my make up when I walked into the hall with my sister.

My mom was hurrying down the hall, back to our suite, after a brief stop at home to change into her dress and check on my dad.

My sister and I gasped when we saw her.

She looked incredible. 035_GettingReady She looked healthy, strong, alive and… happy.

For a woman who had been battling breast cancer for the past two years, seeing her look so radiant literally took my breath away.

Tears began to flow. I looked over at my sister who was wiping tears from her eyes.

“You look amazing,” we told her.

She was clearly surprised by our tears.

So were we.

I never expected to be so moved at seeing my mother on my wedding day. I assumed she would look beautiful, but I didn’t think how she looked would affect me so deeply.

I think seeing her look so vibrant made me realize just how far she had come in her journey against such a terrible disease. It made me realize just how lucky I was to be able to share this day with her… to have her zip me into my dress. 002_GettingReadyShe was beaming the whole weekend.

033_DancingShe was happy.067_Ceremony She was perfect.


  1. says

    Your mother is beautiful. I admire her so much for battling breast cancer. My aunt also battled breast cancer but has survived. I saw a whole new perspective to breast cancer once I watched someone I love battle it. What an amazing post!


  2. QueenieCarly says

    That might just be the nicest, sweetest, most beautiful post I have ever read. Thank you for sharing. You both looked absolutely radiant! 🙂


  3. steph says

    another julie wedding post that brought me tears haha 🙂

    my mom passed away when i was 14 and my wedding day (someday) will probably be one of the moments i miss her most. but may god bless you & your mother! im so happy she is a survivor!!


  4. says

    Your mother reminds me of mine: beautiful, strong, and always giving. You both look beautiful in all of your pictures together, and you’re right: she’s absolutely RADIANT.

    Now I’ve got tears in my eyes. 🙂


  5. says


    I loved reading this post about your Mom…as well as your post about your Dad. I am very close with my family as well so these were very deep and touching stories for me to read. Your mom is very beautiful and I am so happy that she was there to zip you in your wedding dress. I love the picture of your Mom and Dad where she is laughing.

    My Aunt passed away at the end of November after being diagnosed with breast cancer almost two years ago. It is a horrible disease and I am so glad that your Mom is a survivor.


  6. Jessica says

    Such a beautiful post. I feel the same way about my mom and know she will be just as helpful on my wedding day. she is also my best friend. moms are just such an important part of our lives!


  7. says

    Awwww this is too cute. My mom walked downstairs as I was finishing this post and my eyes teared up. Very touching!

    (Oh, and I LOVE the flip-flop idea! So creative, and I may be stealing it for my wedding- whenever that is!)


  8. Mimi says

    Your mother radiates!

    This was especially meaningful to me today… I can’t wait until the day that I don’t have to hold back enthusiasm. (:


  9. says

    Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh ….. you just made me CRY! You are just the most amazing blogger and I check your site daily. Keep up the good work. And wow …. what a great daughter you are … so appreciative and kind. Awesome. 🙂


  10. Caroline says

    So moving. My mom had breast cancer when I was 12 (14 years ago) and went through all the treatment. 3 months later she was Bat Mitzvahed. I remember being so mad at my mom because she was sick and I had to miss out on things. Now that I am older and have had my own scare I am amazed looking back at what my mother went through and how graceful she dealt with it. Glad your mom is doing better and glad she was able to be there for your day.


  11. says

    This is an incredible post. Your mom is beautiful! You are so lucky to have a best friend in your mom. You can just tell how much love there is in your family from all of your wedding day pictures. 🙂


  12. Jamie says

    Amazing post, Julie. I got married this past July – and I can truly relate to this post, and the post about your father. I cried reading both of them.


  13. Lauren says

    This brought tears to my eyes. Your mom is beautiful and I’m so happy that she’s a Breast Cancer survivor . I love hearing successful stories on Breast Cancer and this was just icing on the cake !!! After walking in the Tampa Bay Breast Cancer 3 Day in October….it makes me so happy to see that another person has fight this disease and was there for her daughter’s wedding !!! All of your wedding posts have been so amazing !! Enjoy every second of your new life…it’s amazing to be married !!


    • says

      thank you for doing the walk! i remember seeing everyone walking through st. pete the year my mom was diagnosed. it was SO inspiring to see so many people united by such a horrible disease. seeing the women with “survivor” shirts on gave me and my family hope for my mother. so amazing.


  14. Pixie says

    This really was beautiful. Thank you for sharing. After I dried my tears I called my own mom just to say I love her and to thank her for all she does. A mother’s love really is priceless.


  15. Vanessa says

    What a touching tribute to your mom! I know I love mine! She is my best friend and I love and appreciate her so much and for everything she does and is, especially when I was getting married!
    I appreciate her SO much more knowing that other people I know (like my mister unfortunately!) don’t have a mom who is as caring, selfless, generous and ah-mazing to her children as mine is to both me and my sister.
    Great moms are precious gems, national treasures, gifts from God!


  16. Merri says

    Love you Julie!! Another beautiful post, your writing is so lovely and pure. I’m priviledged everyday I can call you my friend, you are just so appreciative of everything, and such a sweetheart!

    <3 <3 <3


  17. krista says

    I think this is a sign – you need to be a momma soon! 😉 Just kidding I know how annoying it is when you are dating and people ask when the engagement is, then you get married and they ask about babies. We will do it on our own schedule, thanks!

    Great post, and a true testament to how special and rewarding it is to be a loving, nurturing parent!


  18. says

    Your mother is stunningly beautiful! She has the kind of beauty that radiates out. What an amazing woman!
    Was Ryan very supportive when your mom was going through her cancer treatment etc?
    Just looking at your mom makes me smile. She is incredible! I am SO happy that she is doing well!


  19. Emily says

    This is wonderful 🙂 My mother had her last chemo treatment for breast cancer 3 weeks before my husband and I said ‘i do’ 🙂 such a crazy ride we both went through!

    I am new to your blog and i stumbled on it while googling ‘is it bad to be addicted to peanut butter’ hahah pretty awesome, huh? I love reading your stuff! Thanks for always updating, reading about your life is a fun little escape!


  20. says

    Oh my gosh. Julie, I have been reading your blog for a while now and I dont know how I missed this post. I am sitting at my desk at work, crying. So beautiful!


  21. says

    I thought reading this would make me cry. I’m a long time reader, since about August of last year actually, but coming back to this post something is different for me.

    My mother has Stage 4 Pancreatic Cancer. There is no chemo, no cure, no treatment. The best doctors can do is make sure she’s not in any pain. I give her injections twice a day. I’ve just turned 25; my youngest brother is 17. She’s only 51 – she’ll be 52 on August 9th.

    It’s breaking my heart, and I thought reading about your mother surviving and being at your wedding would make me cry for all the things I’m losing; but actually, it’s made me grateful for the time I had with her, and she’s still here, so grateful for the time we still have as well.

    I want to say to people, tell your family you love them every day. I did and I have no regrets. This has happened so sneakily and suddenly (there are no symptoms until it’s past treatment). Life is so precious. Please, everyone; live every day as fully as you can. I want to send love to you all. Julie, have a great day – you make me smile every day.


  22. heatherb says

    What a lovely post! And sweet testament to your mother. She sounds so thoughtful and giving (and creative!) I bet pouring herself into it was good medicine for her. Love how she had things sitting out for your anniversary this weekend.

    I know from personal experience how shocking it is when parents face a health crisis long before we ever expected they would. Praying your mom will be in most excellent health for many years to come!


  23. says

    Oh gosh Julie~This is probably my 2nd time reading this post, but I am just so touched to tears! Your love and affection for your mom is just so amazing!! I give you 100% kudos for that. <3 And it's a great reminder to always, ALWAYS live in a grateful way as we take advantage of what we have now, and look forward to an amazing future.


  24. says

    i am sitting here crying reading these beautiful wedding posts- especially the ones about your mom and dad!! so beautiful, and such an awesome way to always remember all of the little thoughts and details from your wedding 🙂


  25. J says

    Julie, I read your blog every day. I know I have read this post before too. but it still makes me cry today. Such a touching post.


  26. Susie Miller says

    I’m going back and reading your wedding posts because I’m planning my own wedding and needed some inspiration, and this made me cry immediately!!! (Now I’m just sitting at work looking completely insane). Your mother is so beautiful, and this is a beautiful post! I can’t wait to share my wedding day with my own mom. Thank you for such a moving post (even if I am reading it 2.5 years later!)


  27. Alex W says

    I just got married and am reading through your wedding posts and I just have to say that this post was incredibly moving! I have such a wonderful relationship with my mom and couldn’t imagine if she had any sort of illness. And she too spend HOURS planning and doing little things for our wedding. My husband however knows family illness far too well. He lost both of his parents to cancer and I know they watched down from heaven on us on our wedding day. You are so incredibly blessed to have a strong fighting mom and I know you don’t take time with your parents for granted and your love truely shows through every post. Thank you for sharing these special moments with the world!



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