Dear Maddie and Jonathan,
I thought in true Mucci fashion, I would give my advice in a rap. Tom Baker, Could you please come lay down a beat for me? Okay, Just kidding. I’m not going to rap. Besides, it took me too long to rhyme ferris forever. Wear us whenever? Declare us withersoever? (and now you are going to spend the rest of this ceremony trying to rhyme ferris forever).
I also thought it might be a good idea to pass out my new invention that I have invented just for occasions like this. You can wear it and use it at the same time. Functional and fashionable (and it glows in the dark). sO I may need this handy for the rest of my speech.
As I look over there and see that beautiful woman today she takes my breath away.
But in so many ways when I think of Maddie I will always think of this picture
Notice the big fresh scrape on her chin that she got earlier in the day from hitting the mirror of a parked car on her scooter. And that is Maddie—she knocked the crud out of her self, skinned her face but somehow expects that when she climbs on that rigged up scooter with her safety helmet on that good things are going to happen. And that has been one of the greatest blessings of my life—raising a daughter who truly believes every day that good things are going to happen. And they have. And today, we stand here in the middle of such goodness and love and our hearts bust with hope for you and Jonathan, Maddie.
In Hebrews it talks about running the race set before us. You know I love that scripture because it talks about running but really, I love it when I think of you and Jonathan because I am reminded of this huge cheering crowd of people around you. You both are so loved. You have grandparents who have sewed for you, painted for you, built things for you, cooked things for you, and prayed and prayed for you and cheerleaded every step of your relationship publicly on Facebook.
You both have amazing churches of people who have celebrated your every step. We are surrounded by friends who would do just about anything for you at any time.
We parents pray for God to send someone perfect for our child and Jonathan, there you are. You are sweet. You are so incredibly patient and kind and you are rock solid. You balance out Maddie’s hyper. You laugh at her dumb jokes, many of which she gets from her dad. You know how to embrace the awkward. You know when she needs a Dr. Pepper and you know when she needs some snacks and you appreciate how she wants to turn even simple moments into a party and you care about making a home where there is love and grace and Jesus and there is nothing I could ask more for in the man who will marry my daughter.
You both have such an adventure ahead. And it will not always be Dr. pepper and sunshine. Because the truth is love is messy. We fail each other. We hurt each other. WE are impatient and selfish and hangry and sometimes just not nice. Do the best you can but if you can work at one thing as a couple it is this. Breathe grace. I just love sweet Mason in that video when he says that when things are difficult, in the end..just love. Make your sweet home one where people will come in and breathe in the grace.
In 2nd Corinthians Paul writes” You are our letter, written on our hearts, known and read by everyone. “ Paul is telling the people that their lives are his letter to explain who Jesus is and the letter is written by the Holy Spirit. And Maddie and Jonathan, your lives are our letter—your dad and I and Tom and Carol. And Your life letter tells your story. We are so incredibly proud of your story and so humbled to be part of it. It’s a story of parents who have been far from perfect and pretty much always awkward, of brothers who are annoying but adore you, of funny goofy days and very hard days but mostly of grace and love. And now you are headed into this incredible opportunity to build a home in a community that is going to be perfect for you—for the two of you together, to love on students, to teach, to learn, and there is no doubt that this is the next part of the letter that God had planned for you for so long.
About that next part, be gentle with us parents. Remember that two minute phone silence that we had when you told me you thought you all might be getting married? It wasn’t because I don’t adore Jonathan or because I thought you weren’t mature enough to marry. It was because I wasn’t ready for you to grow up. I have loved every single part of being your mom.
I loved watching you climb the steps of the bus on your first day of kindergarten, watch you make up bad dances in the yard with Taylor and Marissa, I’ve loved you standing in the kitchen and learning to cook things with me, and I will never forget the night you came in and climbed in bed with your dad and I and said “Jonathan and I kissed for the first time tonight” and your face was the sweetest thing I have ever seen. And we are seldom ready as parents to move to the next moment. And we all feel a little like you looked in that picture with your safety helmet on, ski poles, skateboards tied together ready to fly down the driveway. Like you Maddie moo, we know good things are going to happen..sometimes we just need to sit at the top of the driveway for a bit.
We adore you both. Pretty soon the preacher will say you are husband and wife but it is your covenant to each other that will make you husband and wife, your decision to get up every morning and commit to love each other and do the best you can and to grow a marriage that is marriage your way . Be for each other. Tell dumb jokes. Have Netflix marathons. Try new wines. Play board games. Eat Reeses Puffs regularly. And love…just love.