A Wedding At A Karate Studio And Our Friendship With Rudy Smedley…

Last year my team and I needed a building for the wedding of Lisa and Terry Williams after torrential rains prevented us from using the park we had originally chosen for their event.  Rudy Smedley was the only person willing to loan a building for this wedding and his band to ensure a beautiful event with music and a building to keep the wedding party out of the rain.  Rudy “saved the day” for Lisa and Terry Williams by loaning us his building and performing with his band and we are forever thankful to have a friend with such a generous spirit.  In less than 3 hours, a karate studio was transformed into a wedding venue by my Texas Twins Events/Pawning Planners “team” Cindy Daniel, Robert & Stephanie Hafele, Virginia Malone, Ann Alexander and Maryssa & Makenna Mahaney.  I rented the tables and chairs and made the Centerpieces myself to save money.  The colors of the karate studio (red and blue) worked because we covered up the blue with black and the wedding colors were red, black and white.  “Thinking on your feet” isn’t always easy which is why my entire family work together but without Rudy and his building—who knows what we would have done on short notice?  Rudy saved the day for this wedding.  

Our friendship with Rudy began in 2014 after Cindy and I gave him a call regarding our twins having issues with a bully at school and coming home crying.  We met with Rudy to discuss the problem and signed the twins up for classes that same day.  The generosity of Rudy was amazing for a number of reasons that included giving my twin sister and I matching kimonos to take classes with the twins and get them comfortable by training with their grandmother and aunt.  Our friendship with Rudy and his beautiful wife Cindy started at Rudy Smedley Self Defense but continues today and if your child is having problems, I encourage you to reach out and find a class for them yourself.  

Teaching our children to defend themselves with Rudy was one of the best decisions we made because they gained the knowledge of self defense with the added bonus of self esteem.  Yesterday this training came into play when my grandniece was punched by a bully and defended herself by punching back.  

As a child, I suffered a chronic stutter, buck teeth, homemade clothing and dyslexia that made me a prime target for bullying.  My twin sister, Cindy Daniel often spoke for me until the gift of music taught me to sing my words and overcome my speech impairment but, learning to defend myself came from self defense classes alongside my sister that our father signed us up for.  We learned a lot at those classes and that knowledge taught me the importance of fighting back instead of trying to hide from a bully- I’m not afraid of anyone today because my father believed in the importance of educating my sister, brother and I by signing us up for Tae Kwon Do and self defense with Won Park.  I fell on my back plenty of times in that class but eventually learned how to stay on my feet.

Cindy Daniel & Wendy Wortham- The Pawning Planners
 A “game changer” for this ugly duckling was learning to create a false persona of self esteem.  Modeling and working as a top salesperson for over 20 years in high end markets, I learned that if you have confidence, you can outsell anyone and for years I found creative ways to do this.  In 2001, I became a salesperson for Cadillac and to grow my client base, hired a photographer and ran print ads at area country clubs. For an “ugly duckling” to overcome adversity and gain success, I had to “think outside the box.”  But self esteem came from my background of being insecure and learning to overcome it.  

Over the past 6 years, I’ve officiated weddings at spectacular venues, Rudy’s Karate Studio, backyards, barns, my home and even a parking lot.  When I started Texas Twins Events, my goal to offer low cost wedding and event services opened my eyes to the problem many consumers faced finding affordable options.  600 families later, we’ve successfully “bridged the gap” by merging Texas Twins Events & Texas Twins Treasures to create The Pawning Planners.

Along the way, I’ve met wonderful clients and generous friends like Rudy Smedley who selflessly donated his building and his band because he cared enough to open his studio and get his friends together and help us achieve the gift of a Dream Event. 

 Teaching my grandchildren to defend themselves?  Priceless.  Years later, I’ve never forgotten the fear of being victimized at school because I was “different.”  Perhaps my childhood and fighting back gave me the ability to “leave my shell” and march to the beat of my own drum?  I will never understand bullies and I don’t really want to…

Wendy M Wortham