As our wedding day started to take shape in the weeks of August 2022, one of the things we were certain of was that we wanted a private time together to read our vows. We also wanted this time to be able to slow down and take quality photos and really remember the moment. Our day in totality was perfect, and the private vows were my favorite part of the day.
When Philip and I went to the courthouse and got married in December 2012, we didn't have any vows prepared, so it was really special to have ten years together to be able to reflect on to compose our vows for our wedding celebration. I, of course, procrastinated writing them while Philip wrote them probably in August when we first decided to do it all. When I wrote them, I listened to “our songs” from 2012 and cried with every word I wrote. I knew that reading them that day would be challenging, but worth it.
Most couples' wedding day includes many hours of planning, coordination, and cost. This typically amounts to a mountain of emotions of all kinds, both good and bad, leading up to and even including the day of the wedding. Our wedding was in mid December, and I had so much going on in my mind that the only reason I knew it was cold outside was because our friends and family reminded me of it. Because of all the varying emotions, it can be challenging to slow down and remember that your day is about the two of you and your love that brought you to this moment. We knew from our experience at numerous weddings, that we wanted to embrace the emotions by setting aside that private time.
Another thing to consider is that if you choose to do your personal vows publicly during the ceremony, it's possible that your primary concern becomes performing the words rather than meaning the words. The mounting stress of the ceremony performance could also cause you to mentally check out from the moments with your loved ones beforehand.
Ultimately, if you elect not to have a first look [and sometimes even when you do], there won't be many quiet, one-on-one moments when you can both block out the chaos and marinate in each other's presence. So many good emotions are involved with weddings, like seeing people you haven't in a while, getting to do activities that you're excited about and just having your love become official, but don't let the most important person on your wedding day get lost in all of that.
At our wedding, we took the time, which was almost an hour, after our private vows to slow down and get some memorable portraits. All of this happened before our ceremony, so none of our guests were waiting for us during a cocktail hour. This leads into another important topic, which is timeline construction, which we'll cover soon!
Venue: New Holland Parlor
Videography: Native Tree Films
Florals: DIY by me
Hair and Makeup: Amber Amick-Chavarria
DJ: Three the Entertainer with 1800 Media Group