In a heartwarming moment that was captured on camera, a bride left wedding guests in tears after she made emotional vows to her new stepson as she married his father.
Vanessa Lynch, 30, wanted to make sure that 9-year-old Henry Lynch knew how much she appreciated him, as they were now a family.
Thus after making solemn wedding vows to her husband-to-be, Craig Lynch, 30, she proceeded to make a series of special vows to her new stepson.
“Henry, I know I wasn’t there the day you came into the world,” Vanessa said. “I wasn’t there for your first steps or your first words, but I promise I will be there for many more of your firsts.
“I promise to love you as if you were my own, and lastly, I promise I will be the best wife for your dad, and I promise to be the best stepmom I can be for you.”
After she finished with the vows, Henry went up to her to give her a huge hug, before Vanessa exchanged rings with his father.
Vanessa, from Minneapolis, Minnesota, said, “I wanted Henry to know that I wasn’t just going to be a woman his dad was married to.”
She admitted to being nervous at first, as she wasn’t aware of how Henry would react.
“I didn’t want to put him on the spot in front of everyone, because he is shy and gets nervous in front of people,” Vanessa said. “But something felt right, so when I was done with Craig’s vows, I motioned for Craig to scoot over so I could see Henry.”
“I wanted him to know how much my relationship with Henry meant to me,” she said, adding it felt like something would be missing if she didn’t say a little bit to Henry.
Vanessa recalls tears rolling down as she looked at Henry during that moment.
“I’m glad I decided to do it because Henry told me that they meant a lot to him and that he feels even closer to me than before,” Vanessa said.
Later, the couple showed the emotional video to Henry, who began to cry watching it, which, according to Vanessa, was “adorable.”
Vanessa, a nurse by trade, first met underwriter Craig when they were both in their second year at Augsburg College and she was dating his roommate. She was introduced to his son, Henry, a few months after they started dating.
“I wanted to wait as long as it took for Henry to feel comfortable,” Vanessa said. “I planned our first time together by us three going to see Monster Trucks together, we all had a blast.”
The couple got engaged in August 2019, but after Covid-19 hit, they finally planned their wedding for Dec. 11, 2021, at a venue in Cambridge.
When she was preparing her vows to Craig, Vanessa came up with the idea of saying some words to Henry, too, during the ceremony, as she knows that Henry plays a big part in Craig’s life.
She said that it was easy for her to write the vows but hard for her to say them aloud; in the video, she can be seen crying, which she says she never does.
Vanessa kept the surprise vows a secret from Craig and Henry. Only the bridesmaids and Craig’s mother knew about her plan, as they helped her practice them.
“The guests’ reactions in the moment I couldn’t see, because I was so focused on Henry and getting my words out,” Vanessa said. “But I could hear so many people sniffling around me while I was saying them!”
Vanessa said the idea of doing the vows was born from her own experience as a child.
“I come from a blended family, so me deciding to say vows to Henry really stemmed from my experience as a child—how stepparents should treat stepchildren as though they were their own children.”
Vanessa even chose to walk down the aisle arm-in-arm with both her biological father and her stepdad.
“Just because you don’t share blood with someone, does not mean you cannot be a family,” she said. “It all comes from [the] love you hold for a person and what you commit to one another.”
Watch the video:
(Video Credit: Newsflare)
Epoch Times Staff contributed to this report.
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