Well, it’s not all sunshine and roses, and this past weekend was proof. I was scheduled to shoot 2 weddings this weekend and through different, and horrible circumstances outside my control, I wasn’t able to photograph either of them…
Last week, I came down with chicken pox. Now, I’ve had chicken pox TWICE already (lucky me, huh?), so this third time was very mild. But chicken pox is airborne and that’s not good for someone photographing other people’s weddings. Even though I felt fine, and the lesions were starting to heal already by Friday, there was still a chance I could spread the infection. So, on Friday morning the bride and groom and I finally made the decision that it would not be wise to take the risk by having me there.
Thank God for the Boston Photographers Guild! The BPG is a group of local wedding photographers who come together online and in person for support, encouragement, and community. Before I had even contacted my bride, I sent word on the BPG forum asking for help. And with just a couple hours’ notice, I had a great photographer to replace me at the wedding along with a fabulous second shooter and assistant!
I can’t tell you how hard it was to send another photographer to shoot one of my weddings in my place!! I knew she’d do a great job, but I also knew she wouldn’t take the same pictures I would. I’m a control freak and putting the event, my business & reputation in the hands of someone else, made me realize that I was totally not in control. Talk about humbling! I also knew I’d miss seeing it all come together. I’d miss meeting the families and seeing the couple enjoying their day. I realized just how much I enjoy getting to know my couples when I’m at their weddings! You just see such a different piece of people when you see them with their closest friends and family. And I love that. I was so sad that I couldn’t be there.
Thankfully, the bride & groom were incredibly gracious and understanding. They even called me from the airport before they left for their honeymoon to let me know how wonderful the day went, and that while they feel like everyone did a great job, they still missed having me there. It was so comforting to know that we did the right thing, and they it worked out well – but it was also really sweet to know that they missed having me there as much as I missed being there.
I wish I could say that that was all that went wrong this weekend, but that was just Friday…
By Sunday my chicken pox were all but gone, and I felt very confident that I was no longer contagious. Thanking God, I headed down to the Cape excited to shoot the wedding of two friends. I arrived just in time to find out that they had called off the wedding :( It was so incredibly sad, and my heart aches for both of them. Everyone agreed that it is better they call it off than to go through with it with doubts and end up unhappy or divorced. But, that doesn’t make it less painful or sad or awful.
My brother posted a blog the day before that turns out is unfortunately well timed. He wrote, “To my friend who is suffering right now – my prayer for you is not so much that you would have answers, but that you would see God. Despite the pain, confusion and hurt, my prayer is not for relief, but that you would see God with clarity. For I know if you can learn to see Him in the pain, you will never miss Him when there is peace. If you can see Him in the storm, you will never miss Him again in the calm. If you see Him, you will see a God who not only sees you, but you will see that He cares.” I pray that for these friends as well – that they would see the God who is their strength, their comfort, their refuge, and the One who loves them.
These last few days have been stressful, and sad. There have been lots of tears. But this is real life. Things happen. People get sick. Things don’t go according to plan. We have to rely on other people and let them help us. Sometimes we have to make decisions that hurt. And somehow, life goes on. And I think we’re stronger in the end because of it.
I hope that this is not only the first but also the LAST time I’ll have to miss a wedding I’m scheduled to photograph. And I pray that this is the last time one my weddings gets canceled. But, I am thankful that if that’s not the case, God has a plan for all these things.