“You know, Will was actually on a date with my friend when he met and fell for me,” Shelley says as I am snapping a few pictures of her and Will together. Shelley giggles, and takes Will’s hand as they walk through the park together. Their love for each other seems so fresh, you would never know that they have been together for 25 years. They have experienced many dips and swells together over those years, but last April, one moment would change their lives forever.
Will was in the grocery store, when suddenly he collapsed due to a stroke. He spent over 2 months in the hospital- 34 of those days, he was in a coma- and ultimately was diagnosed with interstitial lung disease with pulmonary fibrosis. Will’s condition continues to progress, and he is hoping to qualify for a double lung transplant, which to date, has not yet happened.
Shelley and Will have such strength together, it truly amazes me. Watching them interact, you can tell that they soak in every moment together. Their smiles beamed the brightest when they reminisced about how they met and fell in love. Just hearing that part of their story sparked a fun and flirtatious interaction between them- it was moments like this that seemed to help them persevere the extremely difficult circumstance that they are enduring.
To be a part of Shelley and Will’s vow renewal, which was a “Wish” granted by the organization called Wish Upon a Wedding, was truly an honor for me. The best part for me was not only capturing a very special day for this couple, but also getting to know their intimate backstory. I learned about the significance of yellow roses to Shelley and Will; Shelley’s favorite color is yellow, and because of it, Will has always gifted to her yellow roses. When Will was in a coma in the hospital, a nurse came to Shelley and told her “I know it is nothing big, but I felt like I just had to give you this yellow rose” as she handed Shelley a beautiful wooden yellow rose. The nurse didn’t know the significance of a yellow rose, and Shelley was floored. This was a sign and gave her such hope!
I could go on and on with other beautiful moments that Shelley and Will graciously opened up to me about during our time together, but for now, let me share some of the images that we took on their vow renewal day.
A shout out to the amazing vendors that I worked alongside that day!
Event Donor: Wish Upon a Wedding
Event Planner: Wanderlust Weddings and Events
Venue/ Catering: Bella Sera Event Villa and Catering
Videographer: Post Script Films
Music: Jason Kendall Productions
Florist: Community Flower Shop
Bakery: Bella Christie and Lil Z’s Sweet Boutique
Linens: All Occasions Party Rental
Hair: Ritual Hair Company
Makeup: B Morgan Makeup
Stationary: Angela Pro Design
Bride’s Gown: Bridal Beginning
Groom’s Attire: The Groomsman Suit
Photographer: Lavender Leigh