Adam and Jessica Smith- June Couple of the Month
I will never forget the day we met. Sunday, June 30, 2013, is the day I met Jessica. Church had ended and several of us were going to have lunch together; that’s when I spotted her as she was walking outside. I caught up with her outside and introduced myself. She immediately made an impression on me with her smile and kind handshake. Jessica agreed to join us for lunch and gave me a chance to get to know her better. As time went by, our friendship grew closer and our trust in one another grew stronger. It wasn’t long before we both realized that there was no one else in the world that we would rather be with. But, our relationship was not like those around us. Jessica and I immediately started talking about our future together, and began making plans for our honeymoon far before we ever started making wedding plans. Jessica made a trip to her parents’ house to retrieve her birth certificate so that she could get her passport. That’s when she told her parents “I need my birth certificate so that I can get my passport, and by the way I just started dating someone, we’re getting married and going to Ireland for our honeymoon.” Needless to say, they were a bit in shock and wanted to meet the guy that was planning on marrying their daughter. After that I would describe our story as “she said yes, and I haven’t even asked.” Her response was “I said yes, and he didn’t have a ring yet.” What I didn’t know was that another amazing story was about to take place.
Nearly 10 years before I ever met Jessica, I lost my great-grandmother to Alzheimer’s. A ring belonging to her had been passed down to my niece, but my niece would do something very selfless. Over lunch, she asked me how about my true feelings for Jessica and if she was the one I was certain about marrying. We had talked about how Jessica’s occupation surrounds herself with those battling Alzheimer’s and dementia, and that she had sincere compassion for them. There was no doubt about my feelings for Jessica, and my niece offered me the ring that belonged to my great-grandmother. I went to Morris Jewelry to see what information they could tell me about the marquise cut diamond ring and to see how it could be used. They were excited to work with me and help me design a ring around my great-grandmother’s diamond, making it a one of a kind. After a few sketches and the suggestion to set the stone in an “east-west” setting we had the final design. Morris Jewelry was the only jeweler that suggested the setting that was trending and growing into something more desirable. When it was all said and done, I was holding beautifully crafted work of art that I was looking forward to giving to my bride-to-be. I arranged a test fitting to make sure it would be the perfect size. With music playing through her headphones and a blindfold on, Jessica was escorted inside Morris Jewelry to try on the ring without the opportunity to see the ring or hear anyone describe any details about the ring.
With 32 days left before the wedding, I realized that I had never actually asked Jessica to marry me. In all the time spent with wedding planning, I had forgotten that one minor, but very important detail. So, I decided to take Jessica on a road trip to Burgess Falls in Tennessee. We had driven for several hours, talking and laughing the entire trip. I tried to keep everything a surprise; where we were having lunch, where we were going, and of course the ring in my pocket! We finally arrived at Burgess Falls and started walking down the trail that followed the Falling Water River. Once we reached the end of the trail, we posed for a couple of pictures and stood in awe of the scenery. I then pointed out another trail that would take us to the bottom of the waterfall and so we trekked on down to the bottom. With the force of the falls blowing the wind and the mist all around us, I got down on one knee and yelled over the waterfalls for Jessica to marry me. She had a huge smile on her face and said yes many times. I pulled out the ring, but still kept it hidden from her, because early on in our courtship she had decided that she wanted to keep the ring a surprise until our wedding day. So, with her eyes closed I put the ring on her finger and then back into the box. Most people think this was a cruel joke, but we knew that it would be a great surprise. What added to this was that shortly after my great-grandmother’s ring was given to me for Jessica’s ring, my aunt in Michigan offered to give me the same wedding band that my great-grandfather wore during his 54 year marriage to my great-grandmother. It was amazing to think that after 31 years, the two rings would be reunited in marriage. We had agreed that neither one of us would see our wedding rings until our wedding day, but the connection between our rings would be an additional surprise to Jessica.
678 days later we were married at Rich Pond Baptist Church, the church where it all started. The day was full of activity, from finishing up decorations, the bridesmaids doing their hair and make-up, answering numerous phone calls about catering, music, pictures, the weather, and who knows what else. The whole day was hard to keep up with, but what I was looking forward to was placing the ring on Jessica’s finger and seeing the look on her face as she finally laid eyes on her ring. The details of the ring would describe her wedding day; a marquise diamond being held by the petals of lilies similar to those in her bouquet, scrollwork that would spell out her initials, and a cross that would remind us of our faith. Altogether, it made sense for Jessica to wait and see the ring. The ring has become an instant reminder for Jessica of our wedding day and my promise to love her for the rest of my life.
After the wedding, we hurried to have our pictures made, rushed off to the reception, and celebrated the occasion with friends and family. Our reception was at the National Corvette Museum where our family could ponder the idea of buying that last minute wedding present (we wish). The night was not so much about remembering every dance move to Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud”, or getting our picture with everyone that showed up, or even leaving in grand gesture. The night was about watching a father dance with his daughter, noticing the hand-carved wedding toppers that were painted to look like us, and making our guests feel like this was their celebration too.