The first wedding was held at a party house were the bride wore blue. Their were no more than twelve people in the room during the ceremony and each one participated. My bride and groom brought to the altar (or rather fireplace) two braided cords, hers was purple and his was royal blue. The cords were to be tied by the couple with the fisherman's knot. I shared the story of the fisherman's knot and of it special history.
The Fisherman's knot is said to be the easiest knot to tie yet the hardest knot to come undone and in fact it is said to only get tighter over time and with pressure. As history goes, knotting was an art form created in the early 19th century. Sailors used rope to create knots - some of them being very elaborate. The knots were used for work, some were just decorative and some knots contained meaning and symbolism. The Fisherman's knot was one of those knots. It was called the true lovers knot and is formed by two over hand knots linked together - representing the hearts of true lovers. A sailor would loosely tie this knot and give it to his girl, if she tightened the knot it meant that she would be waiting for his return and that their hearts were intertwined.
The different colors of the cords represented their individuality and uniqueness. The couple tied the two ropes into one knot which signified joining two separate lives into one. Slowly tightening their knot was symbolic of their two hearts intertwining. The strong unbreakable knot that they had formed represented a strong and devoted bond.
During this whole ceremony, the couples guest (immediate family members) were seated around the couple in a circle - I call this a circle of love. They stood up and stepped in closer. The bride passed the cord to her parents who each tied a knot in the side of the cord that held her color - as they did - they sent out a wish or prayer to the couple. The cord then went to the grooms parents who did the same. It was then passed to the kids that made up the marriage - Bride's son tied a knot and then son's wife helped the two-year-old son (the couples child together) tie his knot. The cord went back to the bride and groom and the couple tied the ends together. I then held the cord forth and let all know that this cord is now an unbroken circle, representing a love that is complete - It has no beginning and no end, it is a family united - strong, tight and everlasting.
After my tie the knot ceremony had ended and I left - the couples friends arrived food was brought out and they had a great party.
The next wedding was also small and intimate - full of personal touches and symbolism - also beautiful.
The wedding began with a parents moment and instead of dad giving away his daughter both sets of parents were asked to come forth - embrace the couple in love and wish them well.
My opening consisted of metaphors relating from flowers and bouquet to families and life. I stated that each member of this family is a unique and special person. Each one carries their own individuality and in doing so adds to the beauty – Like a bouquet this family has been made with personalities that are colorful and bright and that is what makes it whole and complete. The couple wanted this fact to be representative of their wedding. So, they sent about their children to pick out their favorite flowers… The flowers that each child holds is different from their siblings - yet each one was just as beautiful as the next – a great representation of individuality and of self.
I then asked each child to come forth and add their bit of color (their flower) to the flower held by the bride and in doing so... the family will, one by one, create a bouquet of varied colors, fragrances and beauty which is a great representation of all the wonderful things that make-up a family.
After each child delivered his/her flower to mom they stood beside their parents - a tight line facing out - and I spoke of the flowers. I stated, that each color of flower represented these lives – Individual and unique – Each color hold’s it’s own beauty, strength and character. It can stand alone on it’s own and be whole - with out the need of anything else – However when these flowers are put together they create an entirely new and more intricate entity – each flower – each color brings to the mixture a lasting beauty that forever enriches the combination. This symbolizes the importance of each individual within the family and the joining of their lives into one family. I then asked the groom to bind the flowers with a piece of twine and create the family bouquet.
Let the knot in the twine symbolize that this family is bound together by love, commitment and grace.
The bride then placed her bouquet into a vase of water – Let this represent just as flowers need water, nutrients, soil and sun to grow - this family will nourish each other with love, kindness, forgiveness and respect.
I closed the wedding with these words... Flowers are beautiful to behold and compellingly sweet to the senses. Yet we know that it takes several seasons, much tender care and the weathering of storms for those perennial flowers to grow and ripen. Not unlike a marriage.
May the bouquet of this marriage grow from your common experiences and be beautified by your individual expressions.
May you plant seeds of love, joy, respect and kindness.
May you nurture these seeds so that they may bloom and grow in abundance.
May the stems of your marriage be rooted in a soil of selfless love and grow leaves of shared values, hopes and dreams.
May your year’s blossom with happiness and
May the sun shine upon your family.