1 year ago today I woke up and said to myself, ‘you’re getting married today.’ and then, fittingly, took this self portrait 😉
I look at it today and all of the other photos from that time and remember the stories and emotions behind them. I remember the morning of our wedding. Going to pick up the flowers with my sister, Sarah, my maid of honor, from my house, where Justin and his groomsmen were staying. I remember seeing Justin asleep on the living room floor when we got to the house and giving him a quick kiss to commemorate the last time I would see him that day before the ceremony. I remember going to my parent’s house to find my oldest brother, who had arrived the night before with his wife from California too late for me to see, greeting me at the front door with a hug. I remember the egg and the fruit breakfast. I remember building the bouquets on the back porch in the serene Spring morning air. I remember the rest, the peace, the joy, the surreal feeling in the atmosphere.
The mood of the day was certainly enchanted.
I remember standing in the church bathroom with Charissa, Sarah, Judy, Ryan, Brittany, Rachelle, Ainslee and Brielle as I put my veil on, the finishing touch and the moment when I cried as I looked in the mirror and saw a bride looking back.
I remember praying with Jay, the pastor who married us, it was only 15 minutes before the ceremony began and I remember being so grateful for that prayer.
I remember standing at the top of the stairs beside my dad, moments before seeing Justin and walking down the aisle, honestly feeling like I was about to faint, I have never felt such a combination of nervousness and excitement.
I remember seeing Justin for the first time in that tiny modest chapel, and being so grateful that I got to walk down the aisle towards him and no one else.
I remember crying through most of the ceremony, feeling kind of embarrassed at being so emotional and then forgetting about everything and everyone and not caring how much of a fool I looked like, because I was a fool in love.
I remember saying I do. I remember walking back down the aisle as man and wife and then this hug.
I daresay it was better than our first kiss as man and wife, that hug, that embrace, was everything.
I remember so many moments, and as I remember I also can’t help but think about the events of the time in comparison to now.
Today, Justin and I have realized more the weight and the goodness of those first vows, the way selfishness and stubbornness corrupt the pureness of what we promised and how God’s grace and sanctification is the sweetest remedy to our sinful hearts.
I remember arriving at the Hilton on our wedding night, still in my wedding dress I climbed out of our old car and walked through the doors into the lobby. As I walked across the smooth and shining floor I remember hearing faintly from an onlooker, “look, she’s a bride.”
Today I still feel the bliss of being a bride, I may not float across floors in my wedding gown any longer, but I know better the blessing of being Justin’s bride as I feel our love growing in so many cherished ways.
I remember breaking down on the way to our honeymoon. I remember how it all felt so new and daunting, and yet the wonder and newness of our marriage still overpowered any ability of that unfortunate event to fully damper our joy.
Today we are better prepared. We have become far more practiced in working out troubles as a team. Though we are no longer bright eyed newlyweds with wonder to cover over unexpected struggles, we are a more secure team. And overall, we still have and love each other, so let the rains come!
I remember going back to our home, feeling so afraid and small in the space that was still so unfamiliar.
Today we understand our home, its sounds and space. We have made it reflect us, and it has grown with us.
All of the memories and experiences started that beautiful day. That enchanted day.
That day has led to this past year and I am beyond grateful to have been blessed with these past 12 months.
Each day we grew and grow more into who we are meant to be together.
The journey is astounding and I am humbled and profoundly joyful to be allowed to experience it with the one I love so deeply.
When I think about my love for Justin I think of it as something that is tied directly to the core of my soul. I think there is nothing sweeter then to realize what it means to love deeply, and with him I do. Such an innate and aching love. One that cries at the reality of separation one day, blooms at the idea of children being born from such a love, and grows when it sees that it does not take the place of love for Christ but is able to be neatly wrapped together in this experience of life on this earth.
It is a love that is taught daily to sacrifice and one that we are only just understanding.
I won’t deny the hardships and will never forget the happiness of life with Justin, whether we are only given this year or blessed with 100 more it has been the greatest journey of my life and I am so joyful.
– Forever my lover, best friend, teacher, and better half, Justin, I love you.
Also! Just for fun I looked back at our past year and was able to find a portrait of the two of us from each month!
So, here is a visual record of our first year of marriage! 😀
– May 2013
– June 2013
– July 2013
– August 2013
– September 2013
– October 2013
– November 2013
– December 2013
– January 2014
– February 2014
– March 2014
– April 2014
– May 2014
CHEERS!!! 😀 😀 😀