I’ve been playing with these photos for over an hour now. I know what I’m doing. I’m fiddling with photos to keep myself from having to do the real work. The real work being, finding the words to describe Lauren & Darrik’s wedding day.
I usually like to tell the story of a wedding day from my perspective, because really… I don’t know it from any other point of view. But to tell this story from my perspective would require backing up several months to let you know just how easily Lauren slid into my life. Sometimes you run across people in life that just get you. They know your language without ever have spoken to you. They understand your world without you even welcoming them into your home. That was Lauren. Late night text marathons happened often. Details of their wedding day were hashed out around every corner. And when those text conversations turn into late night video calls with no makeup, in bad lighting… you know you have met one of your soul-people.
So, knowing this, you can only imagine the embrace that occurred as I walked into Lauren’s hotel room at the Bellagio so that we could ride out of town together. It felt like my arms were around a best friend. A sister. Whom I had never met.
To be truthful. I don’t really know Darrik all that well. I only know what Lauren has told me because they live in Denver, so I only met him on the wedding day. But I don’t actually need to know Darrik to understand him. I understand him because I see the way that Lauren looks at him. She looks to him for comfort for herself, and for protection for her and their beautiful daughter. Lauren wrote her vows to Darrik in the limo on the way out of town, and had them completed within twenty minutes. When you love a man so much that words spew from your heart onto paper that quickly… it’s likely a love that you can only find once in a lifetime.During the ceremony, Angie of Peachy Keen Unions quoted a verse: Ecclesiastes 4:12 “Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. (But) a cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” I know that this verse is meant to say that Lauren & Darrik’s unity is not quickly broken when their faith is considered the third strand, but I couldn’t help but feel as though their third strand is also the love they share for their daughter. A family of three was made under this beautiful tree. I joked with Lauren & Darrik that I was going to take them out into the desert with a shovel and some duct tape in the trunk. They giggled briefly, but after riding in the limo for yet another thirty minutes out of Las Vegas… they may have started to get a little bit more concerned about my ominous threat.
This tattoo on Lauren’s arm is just one of many tributes she offered to her late Grandfather on her wedding day. Lauren’s Pa raised her. And her heart was just as broken on her wedding day as it was overflowing. She longed for Pa to be able to see her be married, and the tears didn’t stop flowing throughout the day. The photo below is both my favorite photo from the day, and the one that breaks my heart the most. Lauren and Darrik, superficially I wished for three things on your wedding day, pretty light, swarms of geese and wild horses. I got all of those things, plus two more added for the cherries on top. I got two lifelong friends. Thank you so much for trusting me with your intimate ceremony, and for letting me witness the first day of your marriage. xo.