In the weeks leading up to her wedding day, a bride is filled with stress. She just wants everything to be perfect for her special, once-in-a-lifetime (hopefully) moment. But for 24-year-old bride Katie Musser, the anxiety didn’t come from wondering if she had the right colors or the right cake. There was something else that was giving her an unsettling feeling. When the big day finally came, Katie’s inspiring speech left her guests with tears in their eyes.
In the early 2010s, Katie Halid met her soul mate and the love of her life, Jeremy Musser. The young Pennsylvanian lovebirds have been inseparable since they began dating back in college. But the pair had to overcome something significant at the beginning of their relationship- something that would shape their life together.
Everyone Has a Past
When people start dating, both parties bring their own baggage to the relationship. It’s not a bad thing; the most beautiful part about successful couples is watching two individuals coming together, accepting each other, and making their relationship work through compassion and understanding.
However, accepting someone how they are isn’t always easy. There might be red flags or personality traits that not everyone can deal with. With that said, what Jeremy presented to Katie would be have been a deal-breaker for many women. But he was about to find out that Katie wasn’t like most women out there.
I Have to Tell You Something
Things were going great for the young couple, so Jeremy decided to sit Katie down one day and open up; he was ready to tell his girlfriend about his past. But what he was about to tell her was something that nobody would generally expect or even know how to prepare for.
However, they had reached the stage in their relationship when they wanted to take things to the next level. It was time to open up to each other and attain a new level of trust. As nervous as he was, Jeremy finally worked up the courage to tell Katie that his last girlfriend, Casey, was carrying their baby.
A Possible Deal-Breaker
I can’t even imagine how Katie took this shocking news. I mean, how would you react if you found out that another woman was pregnant with your boyfriend’s child? It was obviously a difficult conversation for Katie, but for Jeremy too. I mean, this is a potential deal-breaker and a lot for a college student to come to terms with.
But Katie wasn’t going to let something from his past break them up. She and Jeremy continued to date, and they proved to be one of those couples who can make anything work. Despite their commitment to the relationship, the pair had to work through this issue to make it work for the long haul.
When people break up, the memories, emotions, history, and effort that went into the relationship can be painful. Sometimes it can get messy and extremely complicated. It’s so common that even Facebook and other social media platforms have an “it’s complicated” as a relationship status option.
Jeremy and his ex-girlfriend Casey had been officially broken up for a while, and they were both aware that the other would eventually start dating someone else. However, that didn’t change the fact that the two were expecting a baby together. This wasn’t the only thing that made the situation so complicated; there was a little bit of drama mixed in too.
Rumors and Drama
What’s college life without a little bit of drama and rumors to keep the students entertained? Especially when something “scandalous” or unexpected happens… like in Casey and Jeremy’s situation. Naturally, people were going to talk about it. In a school setting, talking often turns into speculation, which is quickly followed by rumors.
Rumors spread fast, especially when there are curious students involved. That’s exactly what happened, and it led to drama between Casey and Katie, not just Casey and Jeremy. Needless to say, additional stress and drama weren’t good for Casey or the baby, so Katie had to figure out a way to work things out.
Becoming a Daddy
At around the same time that Jeremy became Katie’s boyfriend, he also became a new young father to a baby boy named Landon. Now that Katie and Jeremy were in a serious relationship, Katie was around a lot, and she was included in the baby’s life too.
Both Casey and Jeremy wanted to be involved in Landon’s life, so they needed to figure out a way to put all the drama behind them and learn how to co-parent. It was time to work together and move forward for the sake of the child. But it wasn’t until Landon’s first birthday that Katie did something to shake things up.
Being in your late teens and early 20s is a difficult time as it is. You have the combined pressures of school, deciding on your career path, finding a job, and learning how to become a functioning, mature adult overall. Now, throw a child into the mix. Of course, having a baby is one of life’s greatest joys, but it’s a ton of added responsibility.
It makes you wonder how you’re going to raise a child when you are barely an adult yourself. I can’t help but have compassion and respect for Casey and Jeremy for doing the best they could under these complicated circumstances. They both put Landon’s well-being above everything else- as every parent should.
The Package Deal
Jeremy made his priorities clear to Katie: He and Landon were a package deal. Of course, this meant that Casey was too. After all, she was Landon’s mother. Katie was a caring, compassionate girl and was understanding of the entire situation. Still, it wasn’t easy to wrap her head around the fact that her boyfriend was raising his ex-girlfriend’s baby.
But Katie eventually got used to the idea and really grew to love having baby Landon in her life. That’s why, she decided to take the first step towards squashing the drama between her and Casey and maybe even becoming her friend.
In an interview with The Today Show, Casey admitted the drama between herself and Katie was really hard on her: “I was very upset and very hurt at the time.” She explained that all the tension between them had stemmed from rumors and other people talking.
Nevertheless, Katie decided to be the bigger person when Landon’s first birthday rolled around. She reached out to Casey, hoping to make amends. But since Casey was still so hurt, it was difficult for her to put her feelings aside and face Katie.
Being the Bigger Person
While it is assumed that love triangle drama ends in high school, relationship disputes have the potential to follow us around for the rest of our lives. The only way to deal with them is with grace and maturity. You need to keep in mind that everyone involved has feelings, and it’s important to treat them cordially, whether you like them or not. And that’s exactly what Katie did.
At a certain point, Casey realized that Katie was going to be involved in Landon’s life. She wanted to do what was best for her son, which was to have a healthy relationship with Jeremy and Katie. The girls finally hashed things out and started fresh.
Not as Hard as They Thought
Katie and Jeremy’s relationship was progressing, and they were falling more and more in love every day. As their love grew, so did baby Landon. But there were still obstacles that got in the way of the happy couple. The most important thing for Casey and Jeremy was to be successful co-parents and Katie was well aware of this commitment.
That’s why Katie really wanted to make peace with Casey, and the girls finally talked everything out. They were surprised to find out that getting along with each other was way easier than any of them could have expected. Typically, the ex-girlfriend/Baby Mama and the new girlfriend don’t exactly share secrets and braid each other’s hair.
More Than Just Friends
Sure, there was a lot of beef between Casey and Katie when Landon was first born, but once the girls stopped being so mad at each other, things changed dramatically. At first, they just spoke about Landon but, eventually, they started to get to know each other. That’s when they realized how much they had in common.
One thing led to another, and slowly by surely, Casey and Katie became actual friends. Not just acquaintances who are cordial around each other, but real friends. According to Casey, “We bonded on so many more levels than just Landon. And we realized we had more in common than we didn’t.”
The ones who were the most shocked about how well they were getting along were Casey and Katie themselves. They realized that all the unnecessary drama had been blown out of proportion thanks to rumors and gossip. At this point, the idea of an unconventional family arrangement seemed possible.
Not only was it possible, but it was enjoyable for both girls. Something that neither of them saw coming. “At one time, I thought we would be able to be cordial and co-parent,” Casey explained. “Never in a million years did I think she and I would be the very best of friends.”
Parent Number Four
I have never had to co-parent (or parent at all), but I can imagine how hard it is to balance. Things have the potential to really get out of hand if all parties don’t cooperate. And at this point, Landon had four parents raising him. There were his actual parents, Casey and Jeremy, Katie, and Casey’s boyfriend, Tyler Bender.
It wasn’t just two young parents trying to keep it cordial to raise a child together, it was double that. It’s way harder for four people to agree on what’s best for a child. Now that Casey and Katie were finally getting along, what was the co-parenting dynamic going to be like?
Landon Comes First
It wasn’t just Casey and Katie who didn’t get along at first. Jeremy and Tyler had their own set of issues with each other. It was clearly causing a strain on the family dynamic. However, once Casey and Katie put their beef aside, their maturity spread over to the boys.
“I looked at my boyfriend… and looked at Landon, and I said, ‘I cannot be this person.’ I wanted to do what was right for Landon. This was kind of when we put our differences aside,” Casey explained to ABC News. Once they set their issues aside, they were able to experience a lifestyle that nobody would have expected.
Unfortunately, there is a negative stigma when it comes to couples who split up and have kids. People who aren’t in the situation don’t really understand how challenging it is to navigate. Whether it’s the biological parents that don’t get along or the stepparents that don’t, it’s quite understandable that issues might come up.
I mean, raising a child is complicated enough, but raising one with someone whom you aren’t romantically involved with makes things even harder. But luckily, co-parenting doesn’t have to be a complete nightmare. This blended family has figured out the secret to making it work.
Mr. & Mrs. Bender
In 2015, Casey and Tyler’s relationship got more serious, and the two decided to tie the knot. Now that Casey had walked down the aisle with Tyler, it was clear that whatever problems the couple had had in the past, they were now history. By this point, both couples had put in a ton of effort. All they really wanted was to be happy.
They all really wanted to make their blended family work, and they finally figured out the trick for co-parenting. It was Landon who had brought them all together, but it wasn’t until a couple of years later that they realized how far they had really come.
The Co-Parenting Secret
Years went by, and the family finally got the hang of it. They were able to function efficiently and optimistically, all because they had discovered the secret of co-parenting all those years ago… when Casey and Katie finally decided to make amends.
Katie took to social media and explained the meaning of co-parenting in her shared post Love What Matters: “Co-parenting means sharing the duties of a child.” For this blended family, the big secret was prioritizing the child, and that’s exactly what they did. All the adults in Landon’s life put his best interest before their own. After four years, it was time to officiate their happy family.
Mr. & Mrs. Musser
Despite living three hours away from each other, the two families made it work. And when it came down to Katie and Jeremy’s relationship, the couple stuck by each other’s side for better and for worse, tackling life together. They had a special bond and could get through anything together.
Whether it was the stress of being in college or the hardships that came with parenting, their appreciation for one another continued to grow stronger. In 2017, Jeremy was ready to exchange vows with the love of his life. The newly engaged couple were excited, but Katie started to realize that this marriage meant something else to her.
Anybody who has ever planned a wedding knows how stressful it is. Even if you’re not the one planning it, the pressure is evident. Brides get so overwhelmed with each detail. From choosing colors, a venue, flowers, music, food, and entertainment, it’s no wonder that it takes months or even a year to plan the celebration.
As the big day was getting closer, Katie began to get anxious just from the thought of the ceremony. She was a compassionate, nurturing girl who loved Jeremy more than anything else in the entire world. So why was she so nervous about what should be the happiest day of her life?
Katie’s Heartwarming Idea
Katie wasn’t exactly sure. Once she sat down and thought about the basis of her relationship with Jeremy, it finally hit her. “I realized I’m missing something, the piece that helped shape me and Jeremy’s relationship and helped us both grow up,” she revealed in an interview with The Today Show.
So, after all the pressure of planning and worrying, the big day finally came. It was time for the pair to exchange vows, but she shocked everyone when she did something unexpected and unconventional. What she didn’t know at the time was that every guest in the room would be left with tears in their eyes.
Katie’s “Thank You” Speech
Katie thought hard about her desire to commit to Jeremy, “‘til death do us part.” That’s when she realized he wasn’t the only special person in her life. In addition to a video she posted on Love What Matters, she wrote, “I wasn’t just going into a marriage with Jeremy and needed [Jeremy’s] trust and respect, but I needed Casey’s and Tyler’s too.”
So, when she grabbed the microphone during the ceremony, she held back tears and started her speech. She began with, “First, I want to thank you for accepting me as your friend and allowing me to be a part of Landon’s life.”
We Are Family!
You could hear the guests sniffling during Katie’s heartfelt speech, the entire room was filled with surprise, emotion, and light sobs. This was Katie’s big day, and it was supposed to be all about her and Jeremy. Still, she made sure to include Landon, Casey, and Tyler.
Her compassion and big heart were just some of the many things Jeremy loved about her. After all, it was Katie’s courage that had united the blended family in the first place, all those years ago. The bride went on to say, “I will promise to respect, work, listen, and communicate together as co-parents. I will love you guys, no matter what comes our way. We are one family, always.”
Landon’s Bonus Mommy
But that wasn’t all Katie planned. As soon as she concluded her speech to Casey and Tyler, she got down on one knee and made a promise to the other most important man in her life – Landon. The delighted couple brought the adorably handsome boy on stage.
Katie grabbed Landon’s hand, leaned down to his eye level, and, with tears in her eyes, she vowed: “I’m so happy that I now officially get to be your Bonus, Mommy, I promise to protect you, hold you when you need it, and clean all the booboos you ever get.” She ended her speech with a big, sweet hug.
The Most Important Vow
For the past four years, Katie had been an intricate part of Landon’s life and helped raise him into the sweet, tuxedo-wearing child that he was. She expressed this further in her speech, stating, “I’ve had the privilege of knowing you since the beginning. I love watching you grow, and I will for the rest of my life.”
But it was her last vow that truly solidified her role in the family. “I promise to love Daddy with all my heart. I promise to be a best friend to mommy and your daddy Tyler. We will be one big happy family that you will have for the rest of your life. I love you so much.”
An Amazing, Selfless Woman
As heartwarming as Katie’s speech was, what happened after the wedding was just as touching. Needless to say, Casey was moved by her beautiful speech. After the ceremony, Casey expressed that “just being invited to the wedding was enough for me, but for her to take even three minutes out of her once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, the one day where it’s all about her and her groom was such an amazing, selfless thing.”
Katie told Today, “I needed Casey to know how thankful I am to her.” Katie was so honored and inspired by her incredible, blended family that she wanted to share her story with the world.
It’s All About the Kids
Katie was honored to be part of this blended family and wanted to share her story with the world. As you can imagine, this heartwarming story quickly went viral. It wasn’t just about the fact that she became best friends with Casey. She wanted to show the world that you could co-parent successfully.
“Obviously, we got a good friendship out of it, but in the end, we really wanted what’s best for [Landon],” Katie told Today. They wanted to inspire others and share the secret of what made their unconventional family work. “We want people to see that the kid matters, his feelings, and the love he gets.”
The Best Unconventional Family
Katie’s goal was to prove that even a blended family could be just as functional, happy, and loving as an ordinary one. In her post, Katie added that “it takes true understanding and support from the ones who love you. Everyone facing custody problems, acceptance, understanding, relationship problems, etc.; we got it.”
It’s always possible to turn difficult situations around and make things work. She went on to say, “Not everyone gets the luxury of having a relationship like we formed, but it’s possible to get along, communicate, and give the same rules/love/respect on both sides for your child/children. Go against the norm. Be that CHANGE.”
Not only did Katie inspire others and spread the love, but some people sent it right back to her. As we mentioned, she shared her post and video from the wedding on Love What Matters, and it quickly went viral. The loving and compassionate Katie got over 13,000 reactions and plenty of comments from all around the world.
Her words of wisdom and heartwarming video continue to inspire people every day. It’s been about three years since the beautiful ceremony, so I’m sure you’re wondering what Katie and her family have been up to. Well, it looks like the family is happier than ever.
Tyler and Casey welcomed another baby boy into the world a few years after Landon was born. And the family continues to expand. The family started off with 4 parents and 1 kid, then turned to 4 parents and 2 kids, and now they are 4 adults and three kids! Katie and Jeremy had a daughter together, and all the children have 4 adults in their lives that love them.
It is beautiful to see that Katie knowingly stepped into this difficult situation because of her love for Jeremy. What nobody realized was how incredible everything would turn out. And they were college students! It goes to show that with enough effort, any family can make things work.
Adorable Social Media Posts
When their relationship was getting serious, Jeremy opened up to Katie and was honest with her about the situation. Of course, there were some ups and downs, but, at the end of the day, they were perfect for each other and fell completely in love. Jeremy’s adorable posts on social media prove that there is still hope out there.
I mean, talk about relationship goals! Not a day passes when Jeremy doesn’t appreciate his beautiful wife and her amazing heart. She is the reason that he has such a happy family and that Landon gets to be loved by so many people. With more kids in the mix, Landon gets to grow up with siblings.