Although it may be frustrating that the choice has been taken out of our hands at the moment, there are many reasons that some couples do opt for a small or intimate wedding ceremony regardless of regulations.
At this time last year, I was honoured to be photographing a very special wedding celebration. When I approached beautiful bride Kelley to see if she would be happy for me to share images from her wedding renewal with Dave, she very kindly offered to tell the story of their special day in her own words...
"Dave was diagnosed with stage 3b lung cancer in November 2018. At Christmas that same year, during the family Christmas dinner, he presented me with a box. Inside were 10 pieces of paper. The white one I had to read last - it was asking me to marry him again."
"[There were] lots of tears as we didn't know how bad his cancer would be or how long we had left together.
We contacted our local vicar to see if we could have the ceremony there. Dave wanted it done in the eyes of God as our wedding was a registry office affair back in 2003.
A vow renewal is a lot less stressful, although underneath we still didn't know if Dave's treatment was going to be okay. He'd had chemo and radiotherapy and had started the new immunotherapy in February 2019 which continued for a year.
Strangely we got everything booked for September 2019. Everybody we contacted had availability for the date we had chosen, 7th September; cars, reception venue, makeup and obviously the best photographer we could have asked for.
We had the most fantastic day with all the grandchildren as well as other family and friends there. The kids were great, things went out of plan in the church but that added to the fun of the day. There were also tears as guests knew why we were there.
...we look at [the photos] all the time. It was the best day ever.
As of now, his treatment has gone well and although the cancer is not visible, we can't say he is cured, but it's looking good. He has scans every three months. Not back at work yet but looking to the future once this COVID goes."
This really was the most beautiful and emotional ceremony which was absolutely brimming with love and happiness. It feels really special to have played a part in such an intimate celebration. It is a perfect reminder that although things may be tough, unpredictable and even frightening at the moment, the most important thing is being together and enjoying what we have in the best way we can.
With huge thanks to Kelley and Dave for sharing their story and lots of love to the whole family.