I’m Tracy and I’ve been enjoying a blessed life for 43 years. I’m a Field Clinical Specialist for an implantable cardiac device manufacturer and was transferred to Ventura, California a few years ago to help the existing sales rep cover the busy territory. Being the rule breaker that I am (not really); I ended up falling in love with Jason and marrying him a year later.
Our first wedding didn’t quite turn out to be what we dreamed of, as my soon to be husband had a very serious cardiac arrhythmic episode right in the middle of our vows. As I was making my promises to him, he interrupted me, telling me he didn’t feel well. His face went from a beautiful bronze color to a chalky white as he collapsed into my arms. Imagine my horror as his eyes roll backed, he convulsed and completely lost consciousness. He turned purple and I feared my time with him could very well be cut short. He had no pulse and was not breathing. I completely lost my composure as I cried to God about how unfair losing him would be. I had waited so long to find him. 911 was called and my valiant oldest brother Jeff prepared to start CPR. Miraculously, Jason started to breath and he opened his eyes. The relief I felt was quickly dashed when he awoke but didn’t recognize anyone. I worried his brain had been affected by the extended lack of oxygen. Fortunately, he did quickly regain his memory and we finished our vows sitting in chairs with our family standing around us. We were ALL completely traumatized. The paramedics wanted to transport Jason to the hospital, but he refused. The rest of the short evening was very subdued and definitely lacked the normal easy jubilance of a wedding celebration. Uncontrollable tears flooded my eyes about every 15 minutes. Jason doesn’t even really remember most of the night. How sad is that – not to remember your own wedding? Ironically, about a week later he became the proud recipient of the exact pacemaker that we sell to make our living.
Thankfully, the story doesn’t end there. . . Diann Valentine came to the rescue and offered us an “I DO OVER”. The planning was far easier than the first, because we didn’t do a thing. The real challenge was for me to relinquish control, but I got the hang of it pretty quickly as I caught glimpses of Diann’s extraordinary vision for our new nuptials. She’s such a gifted designer and a lovely person, so the trust came easy.
The secret “wanna be” starlet in me actually enjoyed the filming of activities leading up to the wedding. I was also pleasantly surprised how natural and fun- loving Jason was in front of the cameras. There were a few big surprises, starting with my sister Kelly being there (All the way from Portland) for my dress fitting and two of my other brides at a fitting for their dresses. Then there was the dance lesson where Jason revealed his inner Fred Astaire and I just revealed my two left feet. On to the amazing crepes –yummy! I’m glad I tasted them at the store because I never did get one on the night of the wedding. Last but not least, the Tacori jewelry. I don’t usually get that excited about jewelry, but the necklace they lent me was an all time favorite. I am still trying to figure out how to get Jason to buy it for me. What more could a girl ask for? Dancing with the man she loves, dress shopping with her best friends, eating chocolate and wearing diamonds!!!
Well, if one doesn’t include the blindfolds, cameras and having no idea where the wedding was to take place, the wedding day started like any other wedding day. It was filled with anticipation, excitement, make-up, hair, wardrobe and bonding with friends. Laura, from Hair Comes the Bride, made me look as good as I’ll ever look! I panicked when they informed me they were putting a blind fold over my perfect make-up and hair to deliver me to the ceremony. Diann greeted me on the rooftop of the LA Athletic Club. It was cold and windy. Honestly, not what I had in mind. But, I soon forgot the weather when I saw my friends and family framed by the sunset colored LA skyline in the incredible setting that Diann had created. It was gorgeous!
The ceremony was beautiful and very special to us. Time stood still as Jason and I repeated our vows. It felt more profound and relevant this time. I think having two years of marriage under our belt allowed us to derive deeper meaning from the vows we shared. It was perfect- all except for knowing our guests and bridal party had now turned into popsicles.
I can’t say enough about the beauty Diann created for the wedding and reception. The mood and visual was perfect- very different from our first wedding. It reflected a different side of us. The flowers, dance floor, LOVE table, linens and lighting were stunning. She hit the mark perfectly.
After a long wait for everyone, the reception kicked off with a really nice dinner. I wouldn’t say the food was gourmet, but it was good quality, well prepared and very tasty. Although I was really nervous, we tried out our new dancing skills during our first dance . . . hmmm…. not great, but I did stay upright. One of the best moments of the night was when we were surprised with a new honeymoon to the Bahamas. YEAHHHHH! Although a bit rushed, the rest of the evening did have moments of fun, socializing, dancing, photos and cake cutting in between all the production stuff. It didn’t quite flow like a normal wedding and reception. I felt badly that our guests spent more time waiting for the production side of things to happen then actually enjoying the wedding and reception. I guess that’s a function of a TV wedding. Who knew?
In the end, our I DO OVER was a VERY interesting and fun filled experience. I am most thankful we were able to repeat our vows (With no medical emergencies) and that it ended up being such a magical moment. In spite of the cold weather, the wedding and reception setting was absolutely splendid. The beauty of it will be etched in my mind for years to come. I still maintain that Diann needs to change her middle name to “Fabulous” – Diann Fabulous Valentine.