A Port in the Storm
Kimberly Nicole and Cassie Nicole Butler-White find refuge in each other.
Kimberly Nicole Butler-White and Cassie Nicole Butler-White met on the dating app Bumble. But there’s nothing virtual about the shelter from the storm they have found in one another.
One evening, during one of Houston’s random flash-flooding events, Kimberly was attempting to drive home from work. She ended up getting stuck on Memorial Drive. “I had to drive through dangerously high water, as there was nowhere else to go. Because I was so afraid, I had a major panic attack—so bad that I couldn’t even remember how to turn on my hazard lights,” Kimberly recalls.
She ended up calling Cassie, who was able to guide her to a parking lot to wait out the storm. “Ignoring my protests, Cassie hopped in her car to come and rescue me. At one point the water was too deep to cross, so she got out and attempted to walk to me. I’d never been so relieved to see someone before!”
For Cassie, there was always something different about Kim. “We would sit and talk for hours and hours about anything—from silly things to incredibly personal experiences. We are different in so many ways, but Kimberly has this gift for making you feel comfortable; you’re never afraid to be vulnerable with her. I think I realized pretty early on, during one of those conversations, that the space we shared together was really special and unlike anything I’d experienced before,” Cassie adds.
Chicago native Kimberly, 39, is a graduate of Stephen F. Austin State University and a change-management analyst for a large oil and gas company. Cassie, 36, from Conroe, is a client program manager at Quorum Software. The couple currently lives in the Lindale Park neighborhood.
Cassie proposed to Kim during a weeklong vacation out east in New England—a trip that each of them had always wanted to take.
“During the trip, we’d taken a private tour to different lighthouses, ending at Portland Head Light in Cape Elizabeth, Maine,” Cassie explains. “We talked about the significance of lighthouses and how they represent hope and guidance during even the darkest times—similar to the way we’d always been there for each other. I secretly struggled to get the ring out of my pocket because I was so nervous, and I thought she was catching on to the plan. When I proposed, at first there were no words; just tears. Those five seconds felt like an eternity until Kim finally just started yelling, ‘Yes, Yes!’”
The couple was wed on November 4 in a Conroe wedding chapel, where Kimberly’s cousin, Judge Tonya Parker, officiated the ceremony. “The venue had a special significance to me. My mother had always loved the property and used to comment on it when she passed it,” Kimberly says. “Since she wasn’t able to be there, we thought we could honor her memory by getting married there.”
For both Kimberly and Cassie, being surrounded by their closest family and friends and seeing everyone come together for them was the best part of their wedding. “Also, right after the ceremony, Judge Parker led us to a little room off to the side of the chapel. She told us we needed to take in the moment, just the two of us together, before seeing any of our family or friends. It was nice to have those special first few moments as a married couple all to ourselves,” Kimberly says.
The couple chose not to partake in any of the usual reception traditions like a bouquet toss or garter throw. “We also both decided not to wear white. We wore black dresses instead. We aren’t a traditional couple, so a traditional wedding just didn’t make sense,” Kimberly notes.
The couple’s after-party was held back in Montrose at Boheme and featured DJ LC, who is part of the LGBTQ community. “Both Boheme and DJ LC were phenomenal to work with,” Kimberly adds. “Having LGBTQ+ vendors is a huge plus, because there’s a certain level of instant familiarity when dealing with other members of the community.”
The couple admits that during the week leading up to the big day, anything that could have gone wrong did—including issues with the venue, the flowers, and the coordinator. “It really was a scramble to pull everything together, but we held onto each other and enlisted the help of friends and family to bring it all together,” Cassie says.
The shelter that this couple has found in one another promises to be a theme throughout their lives. “Cas has a seemingly tough exterior, but she is actually one of the kindest, most sincere people I’ve ever met. She’s wildly resourceful, brilliant, and confident,” Kimberly emphasizes. “I love that her best qualities have rubbed off on me, and have made me a stronger, better woman. I honestly admire my wife.”
Cassie is equally grateful for the growth she has experienced in their relationship. “Kimmie is one of the most free-spirited people I have ever met. She isn’t led by convention or social constraints. She’s incredibly confident in who she is, while always allowing herself the space to learn and grow. She’s taught me to open my heart and learn more from the world around me, and she encourages me to be a better person every day.”
Want to tell your story? Email us at [email protected]