Last Friday, on January 6th, 2017 I turned 40. Forty years old. What a milestone!
This business has been a defining force in my life, and those who I have connected with have become my friends and family. I wanted to share with you some of things that have been running through my brain in the weeks leading up to this watershed age, and the thoughts that have settled in the last few days...
1. I. Am. 40.
And oh my God, I could not be more grateful! I do not take lightly the fact that many people do not get to see this age, and I revel in the fact that I am beyond lucky to have a life, to have love, to have friendships and partnerships, a marriage and children. Sitting at dinner on Friday night, surrounded by my family, I looked at my mother and my daughter, and found myself lingering in between two generations; a bridge between the "then" and the "now". My greatest achievement is the people I have loved, and those who have loved me. (And that includes those who may not be in my life anymore. You mattered, too....)
If these 40 years have taught me anything, it's the love that matters most.
2. The work matters, too, more than you think.
Over the holidays, one of my favorite movies "You've Got Mail" was on. There is a scene where Tom Hanks tells Meg Ryan, "It wasn't personal." She questions what that means, stating, "Whatever else anything is, it ought to begin by being personal."
What I do matters. It matters to a lot of people; to my couples, to the community, to the creatives. It matters to me. In my own way, in my own backyard, in my corner of the world, I am setting things right. I am creating memories and connections, telling stories, and giving the world something beautiful. It matters. And every day I seek to be worthy of that responsibility and honor.
I choose this word over "peace" in honor of a show my husband once loved. But in all honesty, there is a calm that has come over me in every aspect of my life. The battles that once felt so important don't make my radar, and from moment to moment I feel a very deep, authentic, and calming vibe.
Don't get me wrong, though. I'm still a bad ass. I am still relentless, and I am still a fighter. But those battles are fewer now, with a deeper meaning, and well fought with good intentions. I have no desire for any nonsense; there simply is no time for it....Which leads me to....
4. We are all on borrowed time.
As I officially enter the "middle ages" I am struck by the idea that every moment matters. I wonder how much of it has been wasted on the fleeting, the worries, the mundane. This is it, guys. The only life we have. Everyone from Tony Robbins to Brian Tracy has been quoted about your life being a masterpiece. And it is.
I want a life filled with beauty, for myself and for everyone I come in contact with. So whether it is your wedding, your birthday, a random Thursday or any other moment in between, do something great! Buy the shoes. Drink the wine. Create a little magic...Embrace the idea of less but better. Let the measure of your life be quality, not quantity.
Don't waste even a moment of the time you have. Say, "I love you" and say "I'm sorry" or just say "hello" to someone. Be bold. Be different. Be any damn thing you want to be. Just take a stance and be.
5. What comes next?
In my personal life, I believe that everything comes next. I have spent years with a man I absolutely adore, and together we have two magical, mystical children who's smiles and laughter I live and die by. We still crave each other, and he is the very best partner, friend, and ally I have ever known. What comes next includes kisses and bath time, travels near and far, skinned knees and broken hearts (for the kids, not the adults!), late night talks and weekend staycations. There will be love and there will be loss. Laughter and sadness. Every emotion you can imagine, and some I probably haven't even conceived of yet. And if I am very lucky, one day our children will be grown, and we will find ourselves alone. We will still know each other, we will still like each other, and we will still crave each other. Not in spite of the years, but because of them.
And what about for us? You and me? Well, the best is yet to come here, too. My best wedding is my next wedding, because every day I get better. Our shared future includes reading and learning, designing and collaborations. There will be flowers and lights, music and wine.
There are so many things that I want to do; that I am going to do! I still have a few tricks up my sleeves, a few ideas that I am batting around, and there are so many stunning love stories to tell....
Thank you for being a part of my life, a part of my story. Thank you for being part of my masterpiece in the making. And be sure to stick around....We're not done yet.
~ ~ ~
And because this man has made my life,
and been a witness to my twenties, my thirties, and now my forties...
Thank you, Tony.
~ ~ ~
Las Vegas Wedding Planner Andrea Eppolito is often published, with works featured by the likes of BRIDES, Style Me Pretty, Grace Ormonde Wedding Style, The NY Times, LA Times, Junebug Weddings, and more. With an eye catching style that shares not only the story, but the soul, of a wedding, Andrea's clients praise her for being their wedding planner, event designer, advocate, and friend.
An internationally acclaimed speaker, Andrea appears and speaks at events for the Engage! Luxury Wedding Summit, NACE, The Knot, the Wedding MBA, and more. Named the Best Wedding Planner in Las Vegas (2013, 2015, 2016), Wedding Professional of the Year (2011) and ranked as one of the top 50 wedding planners world-wide, Andrea works with celebrities, athletes, executives, and all people in love!
Based in Las Vegas, and working as a destination wedding planner world wide, you can learn more at www.AndreaEppolitoEvents.com.