The love and support took a bride’s happiness to a whole new level
As she went through the intricate details of planning her wedding, Dalia Hussein always had one important thought at the centre of it all: her mother needed to be part of it, though her limited mobility and cognition presented great challenges.
She suggested to her fiancée Khalid Ouatouat that perhaps they could hold the reception and celebration at The Village of Erin Meadows, where her mother lives in the Meadowvale neighbourhood so she could be part of the experience. “He was absolutely happy about the idea,” Dalia says.
She was concerned, however, that the village wouldn’t be open to the idea. She knows how well they care for the residents they serve and how friendly and open the team members are, but a wedding reception might have been viewed as too great a burden, she worried. How wrong she was.
“There is no place in the world she will have her wedding except where her mother lives,” thought Meadowvale neighbourhood coordinator Chi Awadh. “This is awesome.”
The team chose to raise a tent in the outer garden outside the neighbourhood to welcome guests as they arrived on May 27 following the official ceremony at the mosque. There was food and drink, music and laughter and smiles from Dalia’s mother, which are rare to see in her current state of health. Village residents were welcomed as part of the extended family to share in the celebration, and Dalia says the entire afternoon gave her a greater appreciation for how fortunate they are to be part of the Erin Meadows community.
“It just shows so much about the whole mission and vision of the home,” Dalia says. “When I first called I was not sure they would welcome the idea; I was afraid they might say no, this was not acceptable. I was floored when they were so happy – I couldn’t believe it.”
“It just goes to show that this is a true community and I’m so happy that my mom is there.”
When she saw her mother smiling with her other loved ones nearby, music and love surrounding everything, “it just took my happiness to whole new level,” Dalia says.
It was a day she will cherish forever.