On Saturday afternoon, Jonah and I got married! And though it wasn't the ceremony we had planned, it was perfect.
I've known Jonah for nearly eight years and have known I wanted to marry him for seven and a half of those. While I never felt in any rush to make things legal, the pandemic that bulldozed our wedding plans made me think about marriage in a way I've never had to before, because the future was always clear.
My parents have always said they don't care how, when, or where our wedding happened as long as they were there, so I wasn't sure how my mom would react when I called to tell her we'd been thinking about getting married without them. In light of medical and health concerns, I wanted the formality of being Jonah's wife before our marriage license, secured for our March wedding, expired. She immediately began to cry, but it wasn't long before we were both laughing at the absurdity of it: Since Jonah proposed last year, our plans had shrunk from a 300-person wedding in Guatemala, to 50 friends in Jonah's dad's backyard, to five attendees during a global pandemic.
On Saturday morning, I woke up early with the absurd thought, "Today's my wedding day!" Jonah and I made pancakes while talking to my parents, I cut his hair, and we Zoomed with family.
I wore white jeans along with the perfume and Gabriella Kiss earrings I'd purchased for our original plans. After pulling my hair in a loose bun and tucking my veil into it, we headed to the house our officiant Rachel (Jonah's oldest friend and one of my closest!) shares with her boyfriend and two roommates.
I had almost no expectations, but when we pulled up, one of the roommates was out front picking rose petals to be the "flower girl." My brother, the only other attendee, greeted us each with a glass of Champagne as another friend directed us for some photos, and we agreed on the spot for the ceremony. We maintained our distance, with the exception of the few seconds my brother took to walk me down the "aisle"—in lieu of my parents being there, he asked if he could give me away, which meant the world to both of us.
Something Jonah and I only realized in retrospect that made the ceremony so special was how in the moment we were able to be: I happy-cried the entire two-minute ceremony and our kiss at the end was so natural. Had it been a well-attended ceremony, I imagine a part of me would have been worried about how emotional I looked, whether I'd look okay in the photos, if my tears were ruining my professional makeup, if our kiss was appropriately long or photogenic—but none of that mattered during our wedding. I was so completely in the moment, I literally forgot other people were there. I don't think I looked away from Jonah once until after Rachel pronounced us "wife and husband!"
No one Zoomed in for the wedding (I worried the technical difficulties would distract me or take away from the moment!) but we filmed the ceremony for our parents.
After the ceremony, we signed the license and were surprised by a "sweetheart table" of some of our favorite foods, including oysters Jonah's mom had sent for the occasion and the "his and her" cocktails we'd picked for our original party (Negroni for the bride, Margarita for the groom!). There were speeches, a lot of tears, and, with the exception of some key loved ones, everything I could have hoped for.
Our plans are still up in the air for our full wedding reception—we're telling guests to "tentatively" hold a date for next year—but if this day turns out to be our only celebration (which it very well could!), I'd still be happy.
While I could point to all the things and people our wedding lacked, it felt so full. It was a gift to be able to feel entirely like myself on my wedding day (in jeans and minimal makeup!), to have the intimate experience of cutting Jonah's hair for our wedding, and to be completely in the moment. In the end, it was as special, emotional, and simply beautiful.
While our "honeymoon" consisted of Champagne and Chinese dumplings on Sunday, it only made me more excited and confident in the twists, turns, and unexpected happy tears this marriage will hold.
For those who need the #outfitdeets, I gotchu! JoosTricot Tank, Agolde Denim in 'Ren' (size down), Loeffler Randall 'Vera City' Slides (similar here), Gabriella Kiss Earrings, Etsy Veil, custom wedding ring by Tura Sugden