I Do. I Did.

15:28:00

Next Monday marks 4 weeks since I got married!

best day of my life

To set the scene, let's flashback to 27th December 2013. My birthday morning, Caelan had to work so I was still in bed when he gave me my birthday card. The card asked me if I would marry him, I look up from the card to see him kneeling at the side of our bed, proposing with a gorgeous watch in lieu of an engagement ring. (I don't do well in emotionally-charged situations so my first response was "f*ck off" before I happily accepted)

Jumping back to present day, a combination of factors, including the fact that we couldn't legally get married here in Northern Ireland until earlier this year, prevented us actually getting hitched. 

Before any one mentions civil partnership, separate but equal is not equal and we weren't going to settle for the token gesture the executive were throwing the LGBT+ community here in NI.

We had toyed with the idea of holding off until 2021 as it would be our 10 year anniversary but the summer threw us for a loop with family illness, COVID and numerous other elements made us reevaluate the situation and we realised: what were we waiting for?


All in, we decided, planned, organised and got married within 2 months. While the restrictions prevented us having more than 15 people at the ceremony and receptions were all but cancelled, we made the most of the situation with our family and closest friends in attendance.

With the restrictions in full swing, we had fewer guests than we had hoped and we couldn't have a photographer or videographer as this would have meant them taking a guest spot. Our friends kindly stepped in with our DSLR camera and an iPhone gimble and with some last minute coaching and tutorials from Caelan, we got some amazing, intimate and candid footage of the day. I'm not one for posing so this was perfect. Fun, relaxed and natural.

We unintentionally embraced the traditions of something old (we wore shoes we already owned), something new (our outfits) something borrowed and something blue (my shoes and Caelan wore sprig of dried eucalyptus in his button hole). 

We were married in Antrim (our local regisry offices were fully booked) and I think it was fortuitous as we couldn't have asked for a nicer registrar. We picked 3 of our favourite songs for the ceremony (chosen especially to get the tears going) and we read our own vows. My vows were short but hopefully expressed how I feel. I like to write but no words had ever been as important as these.



While we had waited a long time to actually get married, the date came round so quickly and the day itself was a blur. I was strangely calm, I was nervous but excited, there was no fear, just anticipation. All doubts and fears were gone, I was chosen, I was loved. I was marrying my person, my best friend. The best day of my life.

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I couldn't leave this post without sharing a lovely story below.

Please read and show the folks involved some love on social media (and in their tills)

Speaking of reception, we had planned to have a meal with the ceremony guests, but Belfast hospitality went into a 2 week circuit break in the run up to our day. We had responsibly booked 6 tables to keep families/bubbles separate in a restaurant but they had to close and in the end, were unable to open in time for the wedding.

 Here's where the kindness of strangers astounds and reminds us that there are some amazing folk out there. The Saturday before the wedding, I still didn't have a shirt (nothing like leaving it to the last minute) and we called into The Pocket coffee shop in town to grab a takeaway coffee and ask about a takeaway brunch for the morning of the wedding. We had originally planned to take the wedding party to the shop for brunch but again, restrictions kept us to takeaway only. On meeting with Richard and his team, they kindly arranged our brunch, ready for collection that morning.  We explained our situation regarding the restaurant and our plans to just grab a few Deliveroo's and everyone can have a relaxed and informal dinner. 

That evening, after emailing our brunch order over, I got a text that knocked me for six. Richard had told our story to his friends at The Hatch (winner of the Best Burger in Ireland 2019) and they offered to cater our evening meal! We really had never wanted a big formal reception so this was such a saving grace. This isn't even the best bit. When we went to collect, they didn't want money for the meals. We couldn't have accepted without paying so Richard and Bailey of The Pocket suggested we donate the cost of the meal to the food bank. Another example of their kindness and generous spirit.

To have someone you don't know go out of their way to help in a situation they know nothing about and have no reason or cause to care about was so unbelievable and is the true meaning of generosity. 

Thank you again to the team at The Pocket and The Hatch for saving our (vegetarian) bacon and making our day even more special.

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