We heard from Rob the other day about his and Kim’s traditional Catholic wedding with an Elvis DJ. And, now, since it’s their six-year anniversary, we’ll hear Kim’s take. I’ve emailed with Kim for quite some time now and I know how much she’s grown during their marriage. But there are a few things that haven’t changed: Her love for her family, her beliefs and her ever-evolving love for Rob.
Happy anniversary, you two. xoxo
Age: Currently 27, but age 21 on wedding day
Occupation: Predominantly a housewife and stay at home mother to three children, but studying to become a high school teacher.
Wedding location: St Joseph’s Catholic Church, Subiaco, Western Australia
Reception at Observation City, Scarborough WA
Wedding Date: 18th December 2005
Length of engagement: 1 year (to the day)
Tell me about your wedding: We had a traditional Sunday Catholic mass complete with the Sunday readings. Initially when we were planning this we thought the gospel reading might have been the one where Joseph finds out Mary was pregnant and decides to call off the engagement, which we thought would be slightly ironic, but turns out they were different. We had standard Catholic vows that I was frantically practicing the morning of, as I knew Rob had already memorized his and I didn’t want to be the one who made a mistake! Our wedding mass was performed in a beautiful old church and many of our friends and family actively participated which we are eternally grateful for. We had two priests celebrate mass for us and were blessed
with a beautiful homily, as they knew us well.
We had friends and family ushering, reading, bringing up the gifts, photographing, videoing, alter serving, singing and as our pianist. One of my aunts made my veil and another two aunts made my jewelry; my tiara has now been converted into a bracelet, which I love; and we had friends help with hair, nails and makeup. A family friend made our cake and the flowers decorating it were made by my aunt in Trinidad and were posted over especially for us. We still have those flowers and they’ve adorned the baptismal cakes of our children. Another friend of ours put together our wedding booklets. And our bridal party was filled with family and friends. My youngest cousin was our flower girl and she actually wore my first communion dress on the day.
I loved my wedding dress and it made me feel like a princess for the day. It took four hoops to make it sit properly, and it was very hot under all that material on such a warm day, but I loved every minute in it.
What was your favorite part of your wedding? It’s so hard to sum it up into one little bit, but I think it would be completing our vows and receiving the Eucharist as husband and wife. Rob also organised to have the bells at the church rung as we walked out as they do in all those movies, which was a highlight for me. At our reception I was surprised to see an ice carving of two swans, which was my brother’s wedding present to us and another special memory.
What disasters did you avert … or not avert and how did you deal with it?
As Rob mentioned, the wedding photo location was left to chance, but we have beautiful wedding photos and were lucky enough to have them on the “big screen” at our reception later. I remember walking down the aisle and thinking Rob’s jacket was too big for him, but that wasn’t a disaster. I think the biggest thing was that it was just a really hot day, especially in the church, which was uncontrollable and something we weathered with lots of water. At the reception, I think some of our CDs got mixed up, and our after dinner dance music was put on prior to dinner. With my family, you can’t put dance music on and expect people to sit down, so my sister and brother got up onto the dance floor first, and we just HAD to follow (or at least I did, and dragged Rob along!). We had dancing before dinner, which although wasn’t planned, was great fun.
Was there anything you would have done differently, or do you have any regrets about how something went? No regrets. At the end of the day, some things don’t turn out exactly as you planned, but that’s life and no big deal.
What was your biggest challenge in planning? Trying to do it all whilst completing our final year of university together and writing my thesis for my honours program. I was in Melbourne the weekend before the wedding as part of my honours presentation and Rob was left to complete all the place cards by himself, though I must say he did a really good job.
What lessons did you learn from planning or from the wedding itself?
I think the most important lesson I took away from the process is that after it’s all said and done, a wedding is about two people and their family and friends coming together to celebrate their bond of love and all the trappings end up being far less significant although it’s easy to get caught up in them.
What was your biggest “holyamazeballzI’mfreakininlove!” moment? It would probably be having completed our vows and realizing we were husband and wife, no matter what.
What were your top 5 favorite things about your wedding?
1. My husband
2. Our family and friends that made the day so special and the outpouring of emotion that accompanies weddings.
3. The wedding bells
4. Our ice swans
5. My princess dress.
6. The dance floor
Top 5 least favorite?
1. Not getting to the dessert buffet! We’d gone outside for some sunset photos and all the profiteroles had disappeared by the time we got back (although I managed to steal one from my bridesmaid!)
2. The heat
3. It all being over so quickly
What was the worst piece of wedding advice you received?
We came back to our room to find some notes left on our bed by our helpful bridal party! We were asked a few times if we were sure, mainly due to our age.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8
This was our wedding speech and I think it sums up everything one needs in marriage. We were also told that we would grow and learn together and find ourselves at a stage where we’d be able to understand one another with a shared glance across the room. We’re getting there!
If you’ve been married for more than a few years, what have been some challenges?
Having three children together, being a housewife, having a student for a husband, moving, living in a country town, more moving, studying myself, having a husband who works long hours, having children who miss their dad, having children who have personalities of their own to add to the mix, finding time to spend with on another and not taking the little things for granted. The list goes on. It’s challenging to make all the sacrifices that go along with marriage and family, but all of them are worth it.
What from your wedding vows/ceremony still holds the truest?
“I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love you and honor you all the days of my life.”
Any other bits of wisdom?
You know that “holyamazeballzI’mfreakininlove!” moment? I look back now after six years of marriage and marvel at how much our love has changed and grown. The love I had for Rob on our wedding day was miniscule compared to the love we share now, yet there we were vowing to spend our lives together. We’ve both grown and changed over the years and had to accommodate one another’s growth. I’ve learnt that the wedding day is just the first day of marriage and it’s the actions and decisions you make in those coming days, weeks, months and years that shape and strengthen your marriage. It’s not one “holyamazeballzI’mfreakininlove!” moment; it’s a multitude of moments that build on one another over the years.
It’s been the look on Rob’s face at the birth of each of our children. It’s been my pride in him when he joined the Royal Australian Navy to serve his country and provide for our family. It’s watching him put the time and effort into becoming a medical practitioner and being able to celebrate these milestones with him. It’s watching our children grow into intelligent, strong-willed, creative individuals and knowing that we’ve done this together. It’s been weathering our challenges together and having our love mature over the years.
I also think it’s vitally important to ensure you learn how to communicate effectively with one another. Not just talking about how your day was, but your hopes, dreams and aspirations. The difficulties you’re experiencing, the fears you have. You need to learn how to actively listen and respond to your spouse. Communication is key to marital happiness. I’d also suggest that you have “date nights” or something similar. Although the “romantic” love tends to fade over the years and mature into something much more significant, it’s important not to take one another for granted, particularly when children come along. Setting aside “date nights” helps to remind you of this.
Wedding photos: Paul Bui
Photo at our wedding: Persimmon Images