July 20th, 2016, 9:50pm
This is the beginning of it all.
In 2014, Jarod proposed to Maranda.
What followed were congratulations from family and friends, overwhelming joy, and the promise of many more years of love to come.
But what also followed was a monumental night at Uptown Tavern in Minneapolis, and over beer-greased fish and chips, Maranda told me about her engagement. I would like to say I was surprised, but I wasn’t. It had been clear for years how much she loved him and he had a significant impact on her life. She was happy, loved and full of life (and still is).
At some point in this conversation, Maranda and I jokingly talked about me officiating her wedding. Here I was, some out-of-control twenty-something year old, and it would be hilarious if I ended up being the one to marry a couple. This conversation became serious, and maybe it was the beer or the full stomach, but something that evening told me to thoughtfully consider this.
And that is when the business began.
Out of love.
And to prove a point.
In life, we are faced with a series of challenges, and we are defined by our abilities to overcome these challenges.
In the beginning of 2015, I was faced with a series of life challenges with work, with my relationships, and with myself. I could either follow the rest of the world by finding work that meant nothing to me just to pay rent or I could seek to differentiate myself by choosing a life I wanted, without the support of others. I could either continue to wallow in my own pain from broken relationships with friends and lovers or I could repair the relationship with myself and move forward. I could either continue to act in a selfish manner or I could start living my life for others.
And so this business was born.
It wasn’t accidental. It wasn’t to make money. It wasn’t to take advantage.
The business started to challenge our view of love, to genuinely provide a friend on a traditionally hectic day, and to forever impact the lives of others.
Maranda and Jarod will be married one month from today, August 20th, 2016.
Many of you don’t know Maranda and Jarod, but you should know that their love is scattered throughout the business and throughout our work. Their love is in the scripts we write, in the conversations we have to get to know you, and in the happiness we share with you.
They are the reason this business began, and they are the reason this business continues.
Their love story is our inspiration.
It is our muse.
It is our catalyst to push the human race forward.
It is our determination to change views on love,
and it is our willingness to be open and to be kind.
Maranda and Jarod have forever changed my life, and there is no possible way I could ever repay them enough. Their love has created a better person in me, and it has propelled my life to an entirely new level. It has pushed me to strive for more and to never settle.
And for those of you we have married, will be marrying, or may just approach in passing at a wedding, we share this story so that you will know why we began this work, and why we think it is important. You are the reason we continue moving forward.
So here’s to Maranda and Jarod, whose wedding has impacted, to date, over 100 other weddings, and will impact many more in the future. May your love bring growth to you as it has to me and to the couples this business has married. May your story forever be engraved in our hearts, in our minds, and in the blood of this business. May you cherish every moment with one another, and may you always remember the power one life has to change another.
I love you, and thank you. I will never forget this journey you began with me, and I hope your journey together is as beautiful as the ones you have helped to create for so many others.