Today, we pick up on the second half of a letter to my [someday] daughter, and also the second half of images from my own wedding day.
What you just read was mainly about the intent of the “stuff” behind my wedding day. Now I want to share with you the results of some advice a friend gave me towards the end of our wedding reception. Pretty simple advice, actually. She told me to take sometime over our honeymoon and write down little memories and feelings from the wedding day that come to mind. So, in no particular order, where’s what stuck out to me in the few days after your father and I’s wedding…
Not being nervous all day. Much to my surprise. I felt a cushion of calm and peace surrounding me.
I started my morning waking up in my old bedroom at my parents’ house and having coffee at my kitchen table, trying to carry on as normal as possible.
That morning, I began my day with some of my girlfriends in a private yoga class overlooking the most beautiful morning mountain range. I remember crying at the end of yoga, tears streaming of overwhelming joy streaming down my face.
With the near eminent threat of a rainy thunderstorm, I remember genuinely surrendering the day to God. Driving home on the way back from yoga, my two nieces in the back seat, I remember explaining to them its like when I shoot a wedding… it’s me and God. Whatever happens, happens. He’s got a plan for us. He is with us. Immanual. And at the end of the day, I still get to marry John. And I found so much peace in surrendering.
I remember kissing a lot of people on the cheek.
I remember being OVERWHELMED with the décor. The flowers were more than I ever could’ve imagined.
I remember telling John to dance faster to our first dance. :)
I remember sitting in the truck, tucked away around the corner, just me and the driver, only able to see the feet of our wedding party walking down the stairs of the Mansion. I couldn’t believe it was go-time. I remember, after what seemed like the LONGEST wait, a nearby coordinator gave us a thumbs-up to drive in.
I remember John and everyone watching as I drove in; I remember playfully using my flowers to block his view until I was out of the car.
I remember being surprised at John’s voice during his vows. It was firm and direct but in a way I’ve never heard before. Had a little sweetness to it.
I remember all my brothers and dad coming in to see me after I put on my dress. It was one of the sweetest moments.
When my father helped me out of the truck, I remember him saying, “I am pretty speechless right now.” I think that’s all he said the whole time we walked down the aisle.
I remember how happy my dad and mom looked when the anniversary cake came out and especially how happy dad was during You’re Sixteen song dedication. I remember him hugging Mom so tight and them burying their face in each other’s shoulders.
I remember how crazy my dad was dancing later in the night. Taking his jacket off. Mimicking all of John’s crazy moves. He had this big light in his eyes. I’d never seen anything like it before!
I remember asking John to kiss me on the forehead while we were waiting for So Are You to Me to end. And how great it felt to hug him at the alter.
I remember my moms big smile all night throughout the reception dancing.
I remember my brother-in-law, Thor opening and pouring our wine for us at dinner.
I remember losing it as soon as our photographer, Mary, handed me Nana’s Bible and asked me to read something out of it. I read our wedding Colossians passage. Instantly I welled up. It was my moment with Nana. I remember looking up at the ceiling a lot, too afraid to look down causing the tears to spill over and down my face.
I remember the sky was SO dark grey while getting ready but before I was to put on my dress the sun began to brightly shine in my room, completely changing the atmosphere.
I remember pausing at the back of the aisle with my dad, looking up at the sky, and being so amazed at how clear and blue it was. The whole evening was flawless. No wind no rain. I remember being totally blown away by God. Overwhelmed and feeling so loved. Feeling his favor on us. His confirmation that we were supposed to get hitched. The previous day had poured cats and dogs. Everyone was positive it was to rain on our day. We were surely doomed and the fact that it turned out ot me even more gorgeous that expected was almost the most amazing and memorable part for me!
I remember being so delighted at how much fun my brothers, Kurt and Kevin, were having. They danced till the end. I remember Kurt dancing with me and telling me the most sincere “I love you Rene” that he’s ever said to me.
I remember my niece, Molly, pulling me to the side and asking to take a photo with me during dancing.
I remember my nephew, Brody, watching the dancing from the sides with the biggest grin on his face all night long. It warmed my heart.
I remember my dress starting to feel looser as we danced all night and having to hold up the heavy base of it so it didn’t slide down. :)
I remember whenever a particularly awesome song cme on handing my beer (I drank Stella Artois on my wedding day) to someone so I could throw my hands in the air. :) I’m not sure I finished a beer the whole night.
Perhaps one of the sweetest memories from the day…
The morning of the wedding as I still lay in bed in my old bedroom, my mom came and sat on the edge of my bed and said something like, “I know John calls you his baby girl but you were my baby girl first and always will be.” Those were the first words I heard on May 25th. Instantly, of course, I started crying and Mom laughed that beautiful smile and said, “Oh don’t cry! I didn’t mean to make you cry.”
We pick up with a few more of my favorite images by our awesome photographers, Justin & Mary Marantz, at the start of the ceremony.
Upon guests’ entrance to the ceremony, were these Polaroids of the “I now pronounce you man and wife” moment from every wedding I’ve photographed. One of my favorite moments at wedding. At the end was a pink Polaroid that said, “Our Turn!”
The vase full of dried rose petals are from different bouquets of roses John had given me over the years.
Said photographers… :)