There is no doubt that times are difficult, and there are decisions that couples are having to make in response to Coronavirus. Do you cancel? Postpone? Elope? The decision is personal, and many Virginia couples are choosing to forge ahead with smaller, more intimate events. This emotional, faith filled wedding is a beautiful example of having a meaningful day. I hope their story inspires you as you plan your own celebration!
An Emotional, Faith Filled Wedding
Let this story of decisions during Coronavirus inspire you.
During uncertain times, we can turn to others for inspiration. It’s difficult to know what decisions are right to ease your mind about when to have your wedding. With gathering bans in place for the foreseeable future, it forces couples to have to rethink the day that they have been planning for months. Let Amy and Rich’s story be an encouragement to you as you potentially re-plan your wedding.
Planning Your Wedding During a Pandemic
What plans did you have to change to still have your wedding?
Amy: Everything became very simple. We decided to forgo our Richmond venue and we traveled to my hometown of Bedford, VA. We got married at the base of the Peaks of Otter near my grandfather’s orchard.
An order for 115 chairs turned into two rustic wooden benches just large enough for our parents. Flower arrangements were exchanged for a bouquet handmade by my mother. I did my own hair and makeup that morning, snipping small apple blossoms off of my grandfather’s apple farm to place in my hair.
Amy did her own hair and makeup for her wedding day.
Why did you decide to proceed with your wedding during Coronavirus?
Amy: You know, at first, I really hated the fact that this pandemic had hit during my wedding season. I mourned losing the day I had dreamed about my whole life. And then I would feel awful about the fact that I was upset about it. In light of everything going on in the world, how selfish was I to cry as I contacted my RVSPed guests asking them not to attend?
But during this time there was such a refinement taking place. Rich and I were stripped down the pulse of what a wedding day is all about. In the absence of the pomp and circumstance surrounding this iconic day stood only him and me and this covenant we were about to make.
Rich used to joke all the time when I was in the throes of a planning frenzy how all he cared about that day was me standing beside him taking a vow to be his wife and that everything else was a mere detail. And yet it became our reality.
Honestly? We never even questioned postponing the wedding. It was our day. We refused to not proceed despite any circumstance. If we could build our I do’s on that kind of resolve, I imagined we could build a pretty darn good marriage.
There can be such beauty in focusing solely on the marriage.
How did your vendors react to the changes?
Amy: All our vendors (excluding our videographer and photographer, Chris Abercrombie and Derek Fowler, respectively) canceled on us, so we proceeded with no reception. We were fortunate in that we lost no money.
Everyone was so understanding and honestly sympathetic to me as the bride. I was able to postpone my table and chair order for later in the year when we hold our wedding reception and catering returned my down payment.
What precautions did you take with social distancing?
Our photographer and videographer did not touch us, and we kept a respectable distance from everyone except parents. With all people on site, we were right at 10 total.
“More than anything, I learned that you can be joyful in any circumstance. It’s a choice.”
What were the pros and cons of having an intimate wedding?
- I felt so present in everything. As much as I had dreamed of getting ready with bridesmaids that morning, I appreciated the space I had to breathe and feel everything that was happening.
- There were no distractions, no drama, no flood of questions or concerns about a DJ being in place or on time. I was just a bride getting ready with some light music playing in the background.
- Walking down the aisle wasn’t a production. Rich and how he looked at me through tears as I walked down the aisle was not tainted with fanfare. It was simple. It was real.
- We, of course, wished that our siblings and friends could have been there. C’mon, what bride doesn’t dream of having every person in the world who means something to her be present in the same space on the biggest day of her life?
- It was also hard not having our reception. We wanted to go straight into celebrating after the ceremony. Instead, we were pronounced man and wife, and it was like, “Okay! Cool!”
Most of their vendors canceled due to Coronavirus, and Amy’s mother arranged the flowers.
Did you personally learn anything by having to change your plans?
Yes, if a bride can’t say that she’d still get married if her wedding dream was stripped down to its humblest form, I would have her question her decision to get married in the first place.
Most of us want the big day. And we should! It’s a big day and it’s worth celebrating! But this really made me evaluate what I value most.
I’m thankful that my husband and I were still content to say yes even when I felt as though the glamor of the day was completely robbed from me; which it turns out, it wasn’t. The beauty of that humble, holy day will stay with me forever.
More than anything, I learned that you can be joyful in any circumstance. It’s a choice. Can you find the beauty? It’s always there.
I laughed that morning as I woke. The world is upside down in a pandemic, and yet that spring morning was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen with every blossom in full bloom and a gentle breeze cascading down the mountainside.
We can choose to look at lack, or we can find the abundance. I keep learning, it’s always right there.
It was an emotional day as they got married under a tree near their family’s orchard.
What are you doing about a honeymoon?
We honeymooned quarantine style by staying in a beautiful wooden cabin out in Pigeon Forge for a few nights. We hope to take a more adventurous honeymoon in the future.
Do you have any other plans to celebrate?
We plan to have our “big” wedding August 22nd, God willing. Rich and I saved the written portion of our vows for our friends and family so that we also feel as though we get to authentically share part of the day with them. All our celebrations will happen then.
Even with a change of plans due to Coronavirus, they had a lovely wedding.
One thing that is evident with Amy and Rich’s day is that their beliefs are evident. Amy shared a prayer with her father and then with Rich prior to them getting married. They sang praises and shared communion during their ceremony. What a beautiful way to start a wedding and a lifetime together. Enjoy their faith filled wedding!
Such a beautiful, faith filled wedding!
Almost anything is possible when you add love. If you would like to see another couple’s story of planning during the Coronavirus pandemic, just click here. Happy planning!