Aly Femia had planned on being a fall bride. But when her mother, Mary Quinn, went to the doctor to check on a pain she was having in her neck and found out that she actually had incurable lung cancer that had spread to her brain, waiting until September 2015, as originally planned, was not an option for Aly. She asked the doctor when she should say "I do," if she wanted her mom to be there, and he said, "Tomorrow."
In turn, Aly, Anthony, their families, and the Yale New Haven Hospital staff all banded together to plan a wedding in just 24 hours, according to BuzzFeed.
One of the doctors reportedly took Aly dress shopping, the couple was able to get their marriage license, the hospital staff bought Aly a bracelet for her "something new," a social worker gave Aly her grandmother's handkerchief to be her "something old," and Aly opted to wear her mother's pearl necklace. The hospital donated food, flowers, and a wedding cake, and the hospital chaplain performed the ceremony right in Mary's hospital room. Amazing!
And on January 29, Aly and Anthony took their vows right by Aly's mom's bedside. Aly says doing this way was particularly important to her, because she had lost her father 16 years ago to metastatic lung cancer and wanted "one of my parents at my wedding."
Although it sounds so bittersweet, Aly reflected on the experience in an incredibly positive way:
I'm so glad that she was there to watch me say 'I do' and see me marry my best friend. I couldn't have asked for a more perfect day.
Mary Quinn passed away three days ago, on February 3.
In this day and age of wedding industrial complex insanity, Aly's story undoubtedly puts wedding planning -- and the real meaning of saying "I do" -- in perspective. What a tearjerking reminder of what truly matters.
How were your wedding plans influenced by your loved ones?
Image via apdk/Flickr