I've never had a couple I didn’t like, to say the least. I can’t name a wedding client I wouldn’t scream in excitement randomly seeing in public.
But once in a while, destiny throws me a couple that I swear is a gift from the Universe itself.
When I met Bailey and Johnny it was after a particularly hard day at my other job, Mom World. My tiny bosses had been real tyrants that day and I was feeling extra tired. I drove about half an hour to meet them. Very nervously I got set up. I was tired, and children can take a lot out of you, but all that changed the second I met Bailey and Johnny that night.
I scrunch my nose and swallow tears as I reminisce about the ball of white light that entered the room in the form of Bailey. Her smile was familiar, warm and loving. The very first thing she did was hug me. She squeezed me like a long lost friend she had been missing, and in that hug, she took all my fears, doubts and stress with her. As I hugged Bailey, my eyes fell on a beaming Jonathan. Just as warm and friendly as Bailey, and just as much of a ray of sunshine. Bailey regaled me with praise and adoration as we made our way to the table. I knew right than and there I had met magic.
“You are just fantastic. I can’t believe I’m meeting you. I feel like I should ask for your autograph!” And with that I was back. On top of the world, we all agreed that less than a year later, I would be the chosen one to photograph their beautiful wedding.
Bailey’s wedding day started just like any other. A trip to a hotel room, a bunch of girls using a bunch of products and the aroma in the air is always the same.
The excitement and energy was in the air but something lacked. Tension. There wasn’t any. Anywhere. I looked under the bed, in the bathroom, in her massive princess gown. No stress. No tension. She was cool as Brad Pitt in the 90s. Her bridesmaids quickly invited me into their circle of love. I felt like a friend first and their photographer second.
Bailey’s love for everyone around her wasn’t inclusive of just me, it included anyone who entered her aura. She was so welcoming of everyone around her I didn’t know if the people she was hugging were her family or vendors. I was so lucky to be one of the chosen ones.
Their ceremony at Magrath Mansion crossed off one of my bucket list venues. As a child I would run a gruesome, awful, terrible awful 5km in my phys ed class that Mr.Smith and Mr.Steinhauer would assure me wouldn’t be as bad as I thought it would be. So incase they are reading this, 20 years later and those 5ks are still nightmares in my mind, just so you know. One of the stops I would always slow down at, was the Magrath Mansion. I didn’t know how, but I knew this beautiful spot would have a place in my future. I was kind of hoping it would be to LIVE there, not just photograph there but I’ll take what I can get.
Bailey and Johnny’s wedding was a beautiful set up blessed by what I can only imagine was her father in heaven holding back the rain while she said her vows, because honestly it came down like a bucket of water once they made their way to sign the papers instantly.
Being surrounded by John and Bailey on their wedding day made you feel like you were apart of their magic.
At supper I was standing behind John at the buffet. It is always my suggestion to feed the photographers when you feed the bride, it negates the changes of photos of the couple eating which is a win for everyone. I asked John how he was enjoying his day and instead of answering my question he replied with "Oh, after you!"
"What? NO! John, you're the groom, it's your day! I'm not going in front of you!"
"You absolutely are. Ladies first, please."
I can't tell if I was being rude, un-lady like, or professional but I declined John's sweet offer and went to the other side of the table to avoid anymore polite confrontation.
"AH HA!" I said to him.
He looked up, and ushered his Best Man who was now infront of me.
"OH excuse me" Steve, the bestman said.
And proceeded to leave the line up and go behind me!
I had no idea how to handle this amount of chivalry but I did know 2 things.
1. I wanted to know if his mother had written a book on parenting
2. If this is what Bailey has in store for her for the rest of her life she truly has found her Prince Charming.
The evening went by so quickly they had to hire me for an extra two hours and I'm sure they would have hired me longer just so I would stay if I would have let them. I got the biggest hug from John before I left. He told me he honestly loved me and he was just so excited to have me there. He wished I could stay all night and he never let go once.
Bailey gave me the same long hug I got when I met her, several dozens of feet away from her Johnny, said almost the exact same words and I said goodbye.
I know this will not be the last I see of these two, but I am kind of sad that their day couldn't last forever. It was crazy, beautiful, fast yet slow paced, organized but chaotic. It was honestly what I live for and I couldn't have asked for a better reason to do what I do.
Congratulations Bailey and Johnny. I look forward to many exciting moments to come in your lives. <3