Friday, September 30, 2011

Our Wedding Day: The First Look

The Pilot and I felt strongly about spending as much time as possible with our friends and family, some of whom traveled from out of state. We also know from experience there can be a lot of downtime for guests in between the ceremony and the reception while the bride and groom are taking pictures. The only way to avoid that was to see each other before the ceremony. I wasn’t dead set on The Pilot not seeing me before the ceremony but I still wanted the moment we first saw each other to be special. We spoke about it and after hearing from another bride who did a “first look” with her husband, we decided this was the best for us.

We talked it over with the photographers and videographer and agreed that they would be the only people in the room other than The Pilot and me. We had everyone hide out in the bridal room or in the sanctuary. The photographer had me walk to the opposite end of the hall that runs along the sanctuary. Once I reached the end of the hall, I stopped and waited, facing the wall. I stood and waited. It felt like an eternity! I won’t lie, I felt like I was going to hyperventilate. I don’t think I have ever been more excited and anxious in my entire life!

Finally, she told me to turn around. I saw The Pilot at the opposite end of the hall with his back to me. I walked slowly towards him even though all I wanted to do was sprint down that hall and jump in his arms. When I finally reached him, I gently placed my hands on his hips and he turned around. The next few minutes were kind of a blur. I know that we kissed. I know that I cried, which was completely unexpected. I had been so calm and collected all day. Also, I’ve never really been one to cry at weddings. I’ve been a bridesmaid four times and didn’t cry at any of those weddings and those we some of my closest friends! I was completely overwhelmed but got it together pretty quickly. I do know that I didn’t want the moment to end. I don’t even remember the photographers or videographer circling around us, capturing the moment...but I'm so glad they were there because I absolutely love the pictures!

After awhile, we decided we should probably let everyone else join us and it was time to get started on the group photos. It’s not often everyone is in the same place at the same time and it’s very rare for everyone to be dressed up so we took advantage and took family pictures with each of our families and also some shots with the bridal party. Even though the ceremony wasn’t until 5 pm, we wanted to be out of the sanctuary by 4 pm to make sure our guests didn’t see us before the ceremony started. We headed back to the bridal room to hang out. It felt a little strange to be sitting next to my future husband before the ceremony but it was also nice because once again, I felt completely calm.

My 7-year-old niece and 3-year-old nephew were in the wedding and so there was some chaos in the room. Chaos seems to follow little ones but they really were very well behaved. My brother had told them during the rehearsal that Aunt Amber and Uncle Pilot (ha!) were in charge and if we weren’t around, all of the other grownups were in charge. It was cute because my nephew got a little rambunctious at one point and my brother told him to ask me if I thought he should calm down. He came over and asked and even though I told him it was time to settle down and that it was almost time to walk down the aisle, he gave me a high five…and then may or may not have wiped graham cracker crumbs on the back of my dress. Even during that exchange, I was calm. I think we may have all gasped when he touched my dress but all was well!

My niece spent all morning with the big girls.
She was so patient and even got her hair done at the salon!

My nephew is such a charmer and it was a challenge to get him dressed and then keep him dressed and clean before the ceremony started!

Before we knew it, the pastor came and told us it was time! Two of The Pilot’s groomsmen had been handing out the programs and headed to a room just behind the altar. The Pilot’s “matron of awesome" headed back with the other groomsmen while The Pilot and my brother remained at the back of the church to walk the moms down the aisle.

To be continued...

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