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Image: Maggie Winters

Whenever something horrendous and catastrophic happens in the world, I almost always go through the same emotions and struggle to return to blogging. My act of running a wedding blog, at first, always feels so trivial when something as horrific as the events that happened in Paris, Beirut, and countless other cities, occur. It’s hard to write things like “awesome sauce” and “these DC wedding details are everything” when all I can do, really, is recount the images and stories of the bloodshed that took place in one of my favorite cities.

This weekend was such a reflection of what life is truly like – ups and downs, highs and lows, darkness and light, good and evil.

As you know, it was my five year wedding anniversary on Friday. Andy & I didn’t do anything special as my parents weren’t getting into town to watch Evie until Saturday (nor did I have any idea what Andy had planned). As we were food shopping at Whole Foods, things really started to unravel in Paris and I just constantly tried to update my Twitter feed to read what was going on as the horror just kept unfolding. I drove home from the food store in a fog, not really sure how to make sense of my feelings.

I felt hopeless, I felt scared, I felt sad, I felt angry. Not feelings you usually have on a day of an anniversary celebration. But that is life and our wedding anniversary will now share an anniversary with the death and destruction that occurred in Paris.

On Saturday morning we woke up and Andy had an entire day planned for us. It started with a trip back to the church where we got married. We walked down the blog to the church, stopping every few feet for an envelope, that held the “big” things we accomplished together through each year we’d been married. And then it ended at the church …. where our friends Maggie & Steven of Pop Wed Co were waiting to capture a surprise vow renewal. The tears are coming back now just remembering the beautiful words Steven spoke and the surprise I had that Andy had put this all together.

I’ll certainly share a full recap of our amazing [surprise] vow renewal and the insanely gorgeous pictures Maggie captured, sometime in the future. It just doesn’t feel appropriate today as I am still reeling a bit from Friday’s events. And I’ll be honest, feeling slightly guilty at the weekend we had. We ate really good food, we got to spend some time together, we shopped, and yesterday I got a massage. I feel guilty just typing that out. I am having a hard time fully enjoying it all when I know so many people had such a different weekend.

So while I continue to find ways to come to terms with what happened this weekend (and continues to happen in cities and towns across the world, every day). I’ll end this post with one of my favorite quotes from one of my favorite movies. My friend Amy posted this on Facebook this morning and it really was exactly what I needed to pick myself up this week. A reminder that while there is evil and hatred and destruction in this world, it’s the LOVE that we should focus on.

“Whenever I get gloomy with the state of the world, I think about the arrivals gate at Heathrow Airport. General opinion’s starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don’t see that. It seems to me that love is everywhere. Often it’s not particularly dignified or newsworthy, but it’s always there – fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, old friends. When the planes hit the Twin Towers, as far as I know none of the phone calls from the people on board were messages of hate or revenge – they were all messages of love. If you look for it, I’ve got a sneaky feeling you’ll find that love actually is all around.”

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  1. I agree! Everything seems so small when such tragedies happen! That is great that you had an amazing wedding anniversary celebration. You deserve it! And kudos to Andy for planning such an awesome weekend!

  2. I completely understand the feelings of guilt and how trivial some of this wedding stuff can seem. But like you mention in the end of your post, I actually think it’s very powerful that your weekend was full of love and warmth and light. We need those things to survive and balance all the darkness. And it’s why I’m still drawn to the wedding industry despite some of the trivial details that sometimes seem superficial – weddings are such hopeful events. They’re full of love and hope and joy. They create community and family. So I’d argue that while yes, the escort cards and bouquets may seem trivial, the weddings themselves are not. They provide an essential ceremonial dose of much needed joy in this often dark world.

  3. In the face of all the depressing things in the world, we need things like weddings to show us that love is all around. :) your blog reminds us that good things exist – consider it a way to ground people!

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