It's tough to say which wedding or commitment ceremony was the most important for me this year. So I'll just make it easy on myself and go by the numbers. 29 years kinda' trumps everything else. A first commitment of a wedding day is the very start of the future for two lovebirds, and that has its own special place. But a 29th wedding anniversary and a vow renewal speaks to the level of commitment that a couple shares with each other, and the hardships they have endured already. And in that case... well, 29 years wins.
I grew up with Linda and Mark Clark. In fact, I've known Linda, Mark, and their four beautiful daughters, Natalie, Amanda, Raven, and Tessa for probably 20 years - maybe longer.
Bearing witness to a couple who has achieved the near 30-year place in their marriage is not only a rarity, but something to be treasured; treasured by those close to you. And the ceremony was small and truly intimate. As Linda told me, "Every single person here has played a huge role in our marriage over the past 29 years. They all have a special place in our hearts, and that's how we wanted it." And upon asking if they'll be exchanging rings at their renewal ceremony, Linda told me, "We have our rings, but we decided to exchange watches. We wanted to give each other a gift that was timeless." How cool is that? I don't think I could have planned it any better myself.
A huge thank you to the Clark family for allowing me to hang out with them for a few hours and spend this special time with them. Being witness to such an amazing time in your lives was a true blessing, and showed me what I have to look forward to with my wife in another 26 years.