How We Met
Like many couples nowadays, we met through an online dating app. The story of our first date is far from simple though and is quite interesting. We scheduled our first date a few days before, not thinking to exchange numbers in case something happened. The night before, I messaged Ada to confirm she was still available for our date, and my message failed to send. I attempted to send it several times, but all night, my messages failed to get through. I reached out to customer service, but they did not get back to me; I thought my app was broken and there was nothing I could do. Fortunately, the next day, I was able to get my message through. However, when I didn’t get a response from Ada all day, I assumed the date was most likely off. Still, I dressed up slightly nicer than usual before heading to work and had a little bit of optimism left inside me. Just as I was about to leave work, Ada messaged me and told me that she had forgotten to take her phone to work and that the date was still on.
I walked through the sweltering heat from my workplace to Umami, where I met Ada. Despite the sweat from the heat (which she definitely noticed), we really connected, to the point where we both mentioned that we thought we were talking with ourselves in the mirror. The conversation went on so long that the waitress gave up trying to take our order after walking over three or so times. Not wanting the night to end, we decided to walk to a nearby rolled ice cream shop, where we ordered ice cream, and sat on a stoop to rest. There, I showed off my Mandarin skills and asked her for her phone number so that the app couldn’t break again and take her away.
Around a year later, we returned to that same storefront, where we ordered ice cream, and I asked her to marry me. She was so surprised and unknowing of the plan that she actually got mad at me when I insisted we eat the ice cream there instead of taking it back to her apartment. After meeting my sister and her boyfriend at the ice cream place, I sat with her in front of the restaurant once again and exercised my Mandarin skills with the big question – “你愿意嫁给我吗？”.
Like most weddings, the preparations leading up to the big day can be described only with one word: chaos. Not knowing the 3 month rule with wedding bands, we showed up to the jewelry store two weeks before. We took off the two days before the wedding and had two full intense days of planning and preparations.
Fortunately, along with my dad’s help, my mom had carried most of the work and did an amazing job creating decorations, setting up the venue, scheduling activities, cooking food, and so much more. She had always put so much hard work and effort into planning birthday parties and events over the years, and this turned out to be the greatest event that she has ever planned by an order of magnitude.
Brightest Memories of Big Day
The day was full of more great memories than one can count. From the kayak entrance to the arch to the speeches and words that filled the day, it was a day of emotions and love. For me, one of the brightest memories was standing there and seeing Ada look so beautiful walking down the aisle and looking into eachothers’ eyes as we stood in front of the pastor. My heart filled with warmth as she read the custom poem that she had written during our sand ceremony.
We are so grateful to have been able to spend these special moments with friends and family despite the pandemic. The emotional speeches given during our sand ceremony and the reception were filled with words we will never forget and made us realize how lucky we are to have each other and all of the great people in our lives who we love.
We were so grateful to be able to have Ada’s parents join from afar via Zoom. They left us with some beautiful words, including a few that made us laugh like their excitement for kids in the future. Along with them, we were so glad to have a few dozen other friends and family join us on the Zoom. It meant a lot to have them there with us on the screen, despite not being able to physically be there.
Today was one of the most beautiful days we’ve ever experienced in our lives, and given the circumstances of the pandemic, it couldn’t have gone better.