There is a lot that goes into planning your big day. You spend months, maybe even a year, planning your “perfect” wedding. Now, the day is approaching. It is the week of your wedding and you are in the midst of making sure everything is ready to go as planned. Then a global pandemic begins.
It all started on March 14th, 2015, the day we celebrated our 1-year dating anniversary. Even though our date is technically March 16th, we utilized the 14th to mark our celebration, since it was a Saturday that year and was “Ultimate Pi Day” (3.1415…). After such a wonderful day celebrating us, we made the early declaration that if we were to get married, let’s do it on Pi Day. Flash forward 5 years later.
After Joe proposed, it was a no-brainer on what date we were going to go with. Everything sort of fell into place: March 14th would fall on a Saturday in 2020, the venue we really wanted had the date available, there wasn’t a home game for the New Jersey Devils (I will explain more on this later on), and the day was a week shy from being considered “wedding season”, making a lot of our packages cheaper than expected. With everything syncing up like this, what could go wrong?
The start of the Coronavirus crisis in the United States began the week of our wedding day. As if the week of a wedding wasn’t stressful enough, throw in a global pandemic. My planning instincts kicked in right away and I started to send emails, make phone calls, and even started making a “plan B”, just in case. While some places were already beginning to shut down or set regulations, including our own employer switching our offices to working from home only, most establishments were still business as usual during this week.
In retrospect, we are still in amazement that the wedding happened. Every day, we were calling and emailing vendors, the hotel, and our venue, checking in daily that their status didn’t change.
Two days before the wedding, we found out that the sushi chef we hired for our cocktail hour canceled, but would still deliver sushi rolls to the venue the day of. Then, the day before the wedding, I received an email that the surprise I booked for Joe would no longer be able to attend.
With Joe being a huge New Jersey Devils fan, and the timing working out that there was no home game for the team on March 14th, I was able to book the team’s mascot to make a surprise appearance at the wedding. Since the NHL was one of the few organizations already putting restrictions and cancellations in place, it made sense. Despite being bummed, Joe still appreciated the gesture and we both understood the circumstance.
By this point, the CDC’s guidelines were limiting gatherings to 150 people. This didn’t affect us too much since we only invited 100 people. We did communicate that if anyone felt unsafe or uncomfortable, we wouldn’t take it personally if they didn’t want to attend. To our surprise, only a small handful took advantage of the option and the rest celebrated with us. During the reception, already pronounced Mr. and Mrs, and with only an hour left, it was announced that the tri-state area was going into lockdown.
As we celebrate our 1st wedding anniversary, we look back on the day in amazement. Little did we know then that our wedding would mark the last time we would see so many friends and family members in person, the last time we would hug, kiss, and high-five people, and the last time we would attend a party. Little did we know then that we would go into a year-long quarantine.
The luck of our timeline does not go unnoticed to us. Every day during our “honeymoon” quarantine, we have been entirely grateful to have gotten in our wedding before everyone went their separate ways for the next year. As we celebrate our anniversary today, we will make a toast to the future of our marriage being filled with health and happiness, and toast to the hope of traveling, gatherings, and hugging our loved ones once again.
Wedding day photos were captured by https://unforgettableexpressions.com/