November 6-9, 1969
After my unexpected breakdown was behind us, it was as if we were beginning afresh. I felt weightless, and though I didn’t need further confirmation that Nate and I were doing the right thing, it came anyway.
In the mailbox was a letter from Mom. It warmed me to read how particularly happy she was about her future son-in-law:
Dear Daughter – this you’ll always be. Hallelujah! You are enriching our lives by giving us a son-in-law. And this is the only route grandchildren can arrive. Wouldn’t you agree that God is blessing us “above all we can ask or think” this Nov. 29?
She went on to say the invitations had all been mailed that day (interesting timing after our yesterday), and final arrangements had been made on the flowers and music. A 5-piece string group was ready to play, and Mom had copied and sent sheet music to the 7 bridesmaids so they could begin practicing.
Our friend Anna had made a delicate satin and pearl pillow with our initials on it for the ring bearer to carry. Someone else had crafted a beautiful garter of blue lace and pearls, and my 3 former apartment-mates had agreed to hostess the reception along with 2 second cousins and a college pal. The 6 of them were also willing to sew their own floor-length skirts out of the velvet left over from bridesmaids’ gowns. I loved knowing everyone would match.
Enthusiasm from California continued to come to our mailbox, and Aunt Joyce wrote a meaty response to the unusual way we came into our bedroom furniture:
How absolutely and only like our Heavenly Father to care for you and Nate, His children, with bedroom furniture and all. He says, “If we cast our bread on the waters, He will return it,” and we learn from experience that not only does He return the bread, but it comes back all buttered and jammed.
Then she wrote:
I love hearing about Nate. And “Mr. and Mrs. Nathan Nyman” sounds pretty good!
Everything was falling together, and one more bridal shower was scheduled for the weekend, this one in Nate’s home town. We left Champaign on Friday, anxious to reconnect with his parents. All the table-talk was of the wedding, and Nate’s mother showed me the gown she’d had made for the occasion – a deep chestnut-colored, floor-length velvet skirt with sparkling gold top. Completely elegant.
On Saturday at the shower I met several of Nate’s close relatives, including one first cousin who had recently married, too. (Above, right, with Nate’s mother [pouring], and his aunt.) His mother’s dearest friends were all there, and the event was beautifully ap- pointed with silver and crystal. Guests had gone together on a group gift, purchasing 5 pieces of our registered sterling flatware – no small ticket item.
The senior Nymans would be hosting our wedding rehearsal dinner at a club near Moody Church, close enough for us to walk after rehearsing. Nate’s father, who had a gorgeous script, had hand-written invitations for each family attending – more than 50 people, including the parents of the 4 former kindergartners who would be participating in the wedding. It would be a party unto itself, and we were grateful Nate’s folks were willing.
As Nate and I arrived back in Champaign that Sunday evening, we counted only 20 days until we would be Mr. and Mrs. Nathan Nyman. And Aunt Joyce had been right….
That sounded pretty good!
“May he grant your heart’s desires.” (Psalm 20:4)