What exactly do you say about a wedding that, as you witnessed two beautiful women commit their lives to each other on the gorgeous grounds of Shade Trees and Evergreens, took your breath away? That you actually caught yourself just watching and smiling with pure joy while they said their vows, and had to snap out of it and remind yourself that you were supposed to be taking pictures of it? Or the same wedding that brought tears to your eyes as you were sitting in the comfort of your own home office editing the photos? I have no idea where to begin. There’s so much I want to say, but then I also feel that I don’t really have to say much….that the look on Kim and Ashley’s faces says it all….the pictures can tell the story.
I’m always honored to be a part of anyone’s wedding day, but I have to say that being a part of Kim and Ashley’s day meant even more. It was the first (and hopefully the first of many) same-sex marriage that I had ever been witness to, let alone photograph. The love these two women have for each other is, like I said before, breathtaking. It’s gentle and kind. It’s pure and simply beautiful. Watching their ceremony overwhelmed me with feelings I’ve never had before at any other wedding. I was just so genuinely happy for those two. That they could finally commit to one another and be legally recognized by our state as a married couple…..just such a happy moment that mere words can’t describe.
I just want to tell about my favorite part of the day. Kim and Ashley decided a while back to do a dress reveal (a first look) on their wedding day and asked me for some ideas. They ended up deciding to go with my balloon release idea. But Mother Nature had different plans the day of their wedding. It poured down rain. Then it poured down rain some more. And then some more. Our timeline was not working. The dress reveal time had passed and passed by a lot. I was running back and forth between two different brides trying to figure out what to do. It was breaking my heart to think that this dress reveal wouldn’t happen. But it was seriously pouring. Just as we had decided and were about to go with plan B, Mother Nature decided that Kim and Ashley deserved this dress reveal….they deserved this moment. I didn’t know how long I had, but this dress reveal was happening. I wasn’t going to have it any other way. I took Kim out, balloons in her hand, and put her in place. I followed with Ashley, balloons also in her hand, and put her in place. Hiding their eyes behind their bunches of balloons, Kim and Ashley turned towards each other, eyes closed. Then together, eyes opened, and balloons were released, revealing to each other their beautiful bride. Kim stood in amazement, taking in how beautiful Ashley looked. Ashley was pure joy. Arms opened wide and the biggest smile on her face. The balloons floated out of sight. It was a moment that, not only will Kim and Ashley never forget, but I’ll never forget it either. I really can’t thank them enough for that. And I’ll also never forget the hugs they gave me as I was leaving later that night. Ashley gave me a big bear hug, lifting me off the ground (girl has muscles!). Kim squeezed me tight and gave me a quick kiss on the cheek after they had one of their friends take a picture of the three of us together. I’ve never had such awesome goodbyes. I felt so appreciated and like the luckiest photographer in the world….like they were so happy I was there. But they have no idea that I was a million times happier that I got to be there. Thank you Kim and Ashley. I’ll always remember it 🙂