Lynchburg, VA | Jaclyn & Michael's Wedding
The house was quiet, except the faint beat of Jaclyn's wedding day playlist coming from the upstairs bedroom. She and her maid of honor, Laura, were swiftly getting ready and doing finishing touches. The anticipation and excitement lay heavy in the air, like the aroma from her gorgeous bouquet of roses and lady's breath.
Jaclyn was nervous, until the song that her and Michael always danced to came on her playlist. Then a calm settled upon her, giving her strength and peace to get through the fleeting moments before it was time to leave the house.
The cherry blossoms were in full bloom and smelling amazing on the way into the chapel, where their closest friends and family waited for the bride to arrive. Michael paced the aisles and made small talk, trying to keep it together. The violinist started playing and the little chapel hushed.
First, Jaclyn's little nieces, Kiley and Reagan, walked down the aisle, paving the way with flower petals and carrying the rings. Then Laura came next, walking gracefully in her purple gown, preparing the way for the bride. Michael and his dad, who was also his best man, waited at the front of the chapel. Each second felt like an eternity. Finally, the doors of the chapel swung open, and Michael inhaled shakily and shifted to catch himself from stumbling back. He later said that it took everything in him not to cry when he saw how beautiful his bride was.
Jaclyn and Michael had a small piece of their ceremony where they honored their loved ones that have already gone before them. Jaclyn's brother, Colton, lit a candle in their memory. Michael's sister, Megan, also read during the ceremony. Jaclyn's father performed it, speaking of the deep unity between God and Jesus as a template for the unity between husband and wife. Jaclyn later said that the only thing she could remember was that her "dad said a lot about oneness and becoming one." Her father's words were the last thing on her mind in that moment. She and Michael were locked on each other, reassuring each other, and so eager to be wed.
After the ceremony, we stole them away for a few minutes to relax and soak in their first moments as husband and wife. Michael's care and attention to Jaclyn was as evident now as during their engagement session, making sure that Jaclyn didn't get her dress dirty or get too cold in the early spring breeze.
From there, we hurried to catch up with everyone else for the reception at the Craddock Terry Hotel. While they waited for the dinner to served, Jaclyn and Michael shared their first dance together as husband and wife. They both embraced in each other's arms as their song, Never Stop, played many promises for the coming days of their marriage.
Then they each took a few moment to dance with Jaclyn's father and Michael's mother. Even though they are beginning a family together, their roots won't be forgotten.
After dinner, and cupcakes, and a lot of dancing, we pulled Michael & Jaclyn away one last time for the night. We went out into the cold night to the river walk. They were exhausted, but so happy.
We couldn't be happier for Jaclyn and Michael as they start their lives together. Send them congratulations and best wishes in the comments below!