Thursday, 1 August 2013

Our Wedding Day: The Ceremony

The time had finally arrived - it was our wedding ceremony! As detailed in our previous post, we wanted a traditional wedding - so hadn't seen each other since the evening before, and wouldn't see each other until we walked down the aisle.
We had both had our interviews with the registrar, so the big moment was upon us. We had planned  for L's bridesmaid and brother (an honourary male bridesmaid!) to walk in together first, followed by my two bridesmaids, followed by L and her dad, and finally me and my dad.

Bridesmaids bouquets
Our bridesmaid's all wore matching charcoal grey dresses with crystals on the shoulders, and carried fuchsia pink gerbera daisy bouquets. Our Dad's and brothers all wore grey morning suits with fuchsia pink cravats and gerbera daisy buttonholes. You may recall us writing that L was particularly set on the idea that the men in our families would be wearing very traditional suits, and we had so many comments throughout the day about how smart they looked, and how gorgeous the colours were - they were definitely the right decision.



This part of this post will be both our stories of the first part of the ceremony, as we were separate!

Our ceremony room, before the guests, registrar and string quartet arrived
L:
So after-the-interview-that-went-on-forever I was escorted back down to wait for my time to walk down the aisle. I knew S had to go in after me so I knew there would be a little wait, which gave me enough time to send my bridesmaid up to my room for our wedding rings! My Dad was with me the whole time, which was reassuring but so emotional! Just looking at him dressed up in a morning suit waiting to walk his only daughter down the aisle, well neither of us could quite get over the emotion of it all. We were taken in to the room which later became the room that held our evening reception, and waiting there were all three bridesmaids (with the rings now!), and my brother, as they were all waiting to walk down the aisle ahead of us. The wedding co-ordinator kept popping in to give us updates but it seemed to go on forever, just waiting. I can remember that I wasn't nervous, I was just desperate to see my S, it had been so long since I'd seen her and I wanted to kiss her, hold her, tell her I love her....
The waiting was made a little easier that we were in a group of 6, as the chatter kept my emotions in check, and helped me to focus on other things, like my brother asking me what we would be having for dinner!! After about 15 minutes of waiting we heard the music change, the string quartet that had been playing for our guests since their arrival began the opening of Pachelbel's Canon, the music we had chosen to walk down the aisle to - and that was it, we were ready. The bridesmaids all went in first, turning round as they went to blow me a kiss, and my Dad stood whilst I took his arm. We were directed in to the front of the beautiful chapel like arched doorway and as the doors opened I felt everyone turn round to look at me. I kept my head down, smiling, but concentrating - trying so hard not to cry or fall over!


 And at the end of the aisle I stood, arm in arm with my Dad, and waited for the arrival of my fiancee.

Now the funny thing is I actually nearly missed her walking down the aisle - the one bit I was adamant I would be the one to do - I wanted to turn round and see her coming. But I'd asked my Dad to point out when she was coming, and caught up in the emotion of it all, he forgot! The Registrar said to me "do you want to see her coming?" and I turned round. The sight that met me will always be held in my memories as the most beautiful sight I have ever seen. I have never seen the love of my life looking so beautiful as she did in that moment, walking towards me with her Dad, and it took my breath away.

S
After my interview, my dad and I were taken to a waiting area, to wait for a member of venue staff to collect us - when they did, I was excited, nervous, happy, and emotional all in one go. This meant that all our closest family and friends were waiting, our bridesmaids had walked down the aisle, and most exciting of all, my fiancee had walked down the aisle and was waiting for me. 
I could hear our string quartet playing our entrance song, and the large, arched door to the ceremony room was opened. I didn't see the talented musicians, our 30 beloved guests, the beautiful flowers, the grey silk bows on the chairs, anything - just L. 
Although I could only see her from the back, once I saw her, everything was OK. Every bit of nerves disappeared, and I knew from then I would love every incredible moment if this day!
Holding onto my Dad's arm, we began to walk down the aisle. After a couple of steps L turned around and looked at me - she looked more beautiful than I have ever seen her look in my life, and I felt tears start to come to my eyes.


We took each others hand as I reached L, and our registrar introduced the ceremony. I remember thinking how I wanted to enjoy every moment, but still felt so emotional. 
After a reading by friends, our registrar conducted the ceremony. The words she used were beautiful - they seemed personal, full of love, and respected the formality of the ceremony without seeming full of legalities. As we planned every detail of our wedding, we were concerned that the words used by our registrar would be stuffy, full of legalities and not romantic at all so we were so happy that it was in fact the complete opposite. The fact that gay marriage is to be legal soon is amazing, but we would never need or want another ceremony - nothing could ever be more special, meaningful or more magical, and a few different, 'legal' or 'real' words could not be less needed in the magnitude of emotion we felt during our ceremony. The truly important words were all included - how much we have learnt from each other, how much we have supported each other the past eight and a half years, how our similarities and differences strengthen us, how we will always care for each other, and how we love each other more than anything on this earth. Also that this is a legal, permanent and ever lasting commitment, where we promised to each other to love and support each other, dream together, laugh together and be at one with each other, for the rest of our lives. For us, a 'legal' marriage would never bring us more than we already have.

We then read our vows to each other (with me going first as I am the oldest). I struggled to read mine through tears and at one point L put her hand on my arm and told me it was OK. I took deep breaths and probably took a long time to get through them, but we had written the vows ourselves so wanted to say them properly. L then read the vows that she had written, doing only slightly better than me with the tears! By this point, we were both crying, our registrar kept stopping to take a deep breath (and afterwards told us she did so to stop herself crying!) our photographer was crying, and at this point I glanced back at our guests only to see they were all crying too!



Our registrar then did a reading, and finally, it was the moment we had been waiting for. We were declared as legally, permanently, eternally, each others.  I don't actually remember her using the words civil partners, but remember her smiling "now shall we have a kiss?" to invite us to kiss our bride. It was the best moment of our lives.


We had a final reading by one of L's best friends, H, and then it was time to sign the register.



As our dads had walked us down the aisle, we had our mums as our witnesses, so they signed our documents too. And that was that, we were Mrs & Mrs - we walked up the aisle together, side by side and hand in hand, the start of a new chapter in our lives.


A much welcomed glass of champagne awaited us!

3 comments:

  1. Oh god I just had to read that in short sharp bursts because I kept welling up at my desk at work! You guys looked so beautiful!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thankyou so much :) it was such an amazing day, it was lovely to write it all down so we can remember it! Xx

      Delete
  2. You both looked so beautiful. Made me excited for when we start all our planning. xx

    ReplyDelete

Thank you so much for commenting, we love hearing others experiences, or just if you liked the post!