I miss weddings.
I miss love, the second time around. I miss the bride having her grandson/grandma dance.
I miss first looks with dad and tearful hugs with mom. I miss pre-ceremony chicken nuggets (while protecting your dress by wearing a garment bag!). I miss shooting weddings for work friends and family members and childhood friends.
I miss working with videographers to combine great ideas. I miss watching my cousin help dress her daughter as a bride. I miss goofy bridesmaids who are the life of the party! I miss brave brides who want to fly on their wedding day. I miss grooms who run off to the bushes to pee mid portrait session. I miss having to shoot at the worst light of the day. I miss mamas crying while dad dances with the bride. I miss watching my uncle get drunk for the first time in years.
I miss scrambling to find a place to shoot portraits in the rain. I miss that one cocktail I get to share with my assistant once the bulk of the party is done. I miss the entire party singing along to Sweet Caroline. I miss wine down Sundays the day after weddings.
I miss car selfies with my bride and groom! I miss helping transport decor from the church to the reception.
I miss riding to the wedding with the nervous bride and her excited bridesmaids. I miss emotional first looks with the groom and his bride. I miss finding silly light test shots in my editing. I miss finding the perfect little hidden garden corner for portraits.
I miss the bride who has every cute getting ready photo pre-planned before I arrive. I miss El Baile del Mandilon (The domesticated husband dance) and the hollers from the crowd. I miss getting too close to the champagne spray. I miss seeing my previous brides and grooms as guests at another wedding, expecting their first baby.
I miss limo rides with bridesmaids singing. I miss dads with top hats and shot guns. I miss grooms and groomsmen who just can’t hold a straight face.
I miss limos with blown suspension. I miss driving to abandoned wineries so the bride can have a photo where her parents got married. I miss hiking up through cow patties and stickers to get the perfect venue overview. I miss brides with their own pitcher of wine slushies. I miss brides getting thrown over a shoulder and carried off for the night.
I miss working the same, way out the middle of nowhere venue two weddings in a row. I miss the bride who is so in love that all she can do is crinkle her nose and cling to her new husband’s arm. I miss beautiful walks on winding country roads. I miss table shots that turn into a huge impromptu photo of every guest from one side of the family.
I miss touching moments with grandma. I miss nervous brides who are just trying to hold it together when they walk down the aisle. I miss the couple who shares their first beer as a married couple at the altar. I miss the bride who can’t stop saying the F-word into the microphone. I miss that beer wall! I miss working with our favorite DJ taking the backyard wedding to the next level party.
I miss working with yet another member of a family I’ve been photographing for years. I miss double wedding weekends with a 5 hour drive (and 40 degree temperature difference) between locations.
I miss grooms who wont stop setting up wedding details to go get dressed. I miss driving out to the “beach” for photos and its not really a beach. I miss home made adult punch and neighbors being the bartender. I miss first dances in the redwood grove. I miss grooms shakin’ it for the crowd.
I miss groom’s who cant hold their emotions when their bride comes down the aisle. I miss groomsmen doing their own thing in the background. I miss the kids being “ring security”. I miss the demure bride who just has that “thing”.
I miss shiny church floors that make the most perfect reflections. I miss the long golf cart ride out to find the most perfect sunset photo location. And again…the best DJ keeping everyone busy while you are gone.
I miss dresses so big that its takes 3 people to crawl under and fluff them. I miss dressing up again 3 weeks later for a bonus bridal session.
I miss setting the camera down to ride the mechanical bull at the rehearsal dinner. I miss moms and daughters holding hands when they get ready. I miss seeing great friends finally get married. I miss finding amazing spots to hang a gorgeous dress. I miss grandma putting her own jewelry on the bride. I miss impromptu sexy boudoir photos in the getting ready room. I miss the guys skeet shooting as their getting ready process. I miss photographers I haven’t see in years helping me shoot for the day. I miss tear filled vows. I miss that moment they leave the ceremony as husband and wife. I miss detail photos. I miss speeches from teen daughters that make everybody cry.
I miss seeing my co-workers joy at seeing her son get married (and planning to shoot her daughter’s upcoming wedding). I miss racing out to get that last family photo before the sun goes down. I miss the smoke bomb photos gone wrong. I miss the sunset photos gone right. I miss the little boys crying because he doesn’t want mom and dad to dance without him.
I miss the perfect winter mountain wedding. I miss the exquisitely decorated venue. I miss the bride and groom recreating their first date (fishing) on their wedding day. I miss catching the perfect sunset through the pines. I miss post wedding margaritas.
I miss 2019. I miss weddings, every last bad or great thing about them. And I can't wait to get back to all of those wonderful and annoying and joyous things.