Friday, August 16, 2013

{Wedding} Saddest Bride

Dear indieBerries readers,


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bear with me - this post is slightly more "wordy" than you are used to seeing on indieBerries - but shortly, you will learn that, actually, words are all I have. I will try and whack in a few cartoons here and there to spice it up - but to be honest am not really in the "cartoony" mood. I am writing this blog post because there are a few things that I need to get off my chest:

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It is of no real significance me telling you what I'm about to - it is what is it - other than that I need to get this heavy-world off my chest and husband will be very happy to come home to his much perkier wife. I have cried many (read: MANY) tears about it all and I'm ready to let it go.

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(that is some freakin' HARD-CORE crying)

If you have been following the blog for a while now - you will know that I got married in April this year - (woohoo!! LOVE ETC!) - I have been posting random snippets from our wedding preparations (DIYs, stationery crafting, flowergirl shoe painting, paper flower making etc etc) and a few blog posts from Our Big Day - (as per request, I have even added a page to indieBerries - where you can easily see all the wedding related things I have already posted). We did a lot of really fun things at our wedding - which I think the guests really loved. I have been holding off posting about it all because I have been waiting for our professional pictures.

Then I got the email that is every bride's worst nightmare.

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although, in my mind - it's a bit more:

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You can go ahead and assume the worst.

The two hard drives with our wedding pictures on them were sent to a data retrieval company in Cape Town. The one hard drive was deemed "unsalvageable" due to the nature of the table-to-tile-floor-crash. Off the other hard drive they managed to retrieve a few pictures - some "party-shots" and some "out-take" shots - ie: those that would never have been selected to be edited for a wedding album - the kind where it looks like you're frozen in a pig-snort. Some of these pictures have been ok - and most have become corrupted files that our photographer has managed to screen shot to send to us. Which obviously, are too low res to print.

After the people in Cape Town were unsuccessful, the hard drives were then sent to Retrieval Specialists in California. At this point, no one knew we were having problems with our photos - because I was convinced that the specialists in the USA must be able to retrieve our photos. They too were unsuccessful with retrieving anything more off the hard drives.

Yesterday I received the few random and sporadic pictures/screenshots that have been retrieved. It was the most bittersweet tease, if ever there was. I cried at seeing the few, beautiful, random and pig-snorting pictures that I've been so desperate to see and I cried at how spectacular our wedding album would have been. There have been surprisingly more pictures than I was expecting - but at the possibility of absolutely none - even one photo is good.

I like to think of myself as a positive person and I have tried to "stay happy" and "positive" throughout this saga. I am a visual person: I love photographs and photography and we agonised for months over choosing our wedding photographer. A few days before the wedding - I wrote this blog post about how difficult it would be for me to not photograph my own wedding - And about secretly wishing to carry my iPhone and SLR around with me on the day so that I can safely record everything for myself. My mother said she would take my phone away from me at the wedding if I attempted to carry it around with me and snap pictures -

Oh, sweet sweet irony.

Remaining "positive" has not been the easiest. Warren (the saint) has been the most amazing husband he could be. (When we first found out there may be a problem - he literally took half a day off work to console his snot-faced wife). The good news is, in spite of the "no pictures" - we're still married. lol.

In an effort to console myself - I am starting a new Support Group:

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For those un-snapped brides - who worked so hard to freaking TONE THEIR ARMS and have ended up with no pictures to show for the biggest and happiest day of their lives - Those brides who had their bridal mug-shots mugged from them. It will be a HUGE bridal movement. All devastated photo-less brides from ALL corners of the globe, will unite. If you know anyone who meets this description - please do send them this link.

We will meet bi-annually, drink ALL the wine and then not share our wedding photos.

I am going to be making pin-badges for all Mugged-Shot Bridal-members. Bridal members will wear aforementioned badges to every wedding they attend in the future. When the brides of these future weddings start telling these member-guests that they are being OBNOXIOUS with all their incessant picture taking - members will point to their shiny badges and say

You shut your mouth! You may thank me for this one day when your photographers hard drive gets zapped by their evil canine.

Mugged-shot brides! We will build a support-community the world over!

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You see! how happy am i?!


On the other, SUPER BRIGHT side, this will be the first time in history that a bride has an "ENTIRELY INSTAGRAMMED" wedding album! Hey! hey?!

How very hipster of us.

In the next coming weeks, I want to share with you some of the fun things we did at our wedding. In the posts there may be one or two professional pictures - but the majority of pics will be scraped together from the friends and family and iPhones at our wedding. (Any friend's who are reading this blogpost and did not see my Facebook plea - we would really love it if you could email us your pics from our wedding day - if we try to take your pictures off Facebook - they are not high quality enough for us to print).

Yes, Warren and I could have another couple shoot - or an "anniversary shoot" - we could get dressed back into our wedding gear (if it still fits) and snap ourselves again. To be fair, it's not really the same - we won't ever have all our family and friends gathered together under one roof - from all over the world ever again. We won't have that incredible, indescribable wedding-high that just makes wedding photos so alive with emotion. We won't have the feeling of that moment of complete commitment and devotion and the breath-taking sense of putting yourself and the rest of your life in another person. And - I can guarantee you, I will never sit down and literally stitch 200 wedding invitations ever again.

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For those brides who have beautiful wedding albums (I loathe you) just kidding - am totes happy for you. But tonight - sit down with your husband, take out your wedding album, a bottle of red wine and reminisce about the best day of your life. You don't realise how precious those beautiful wedding photos are until you don't have them.

I have heard of lots of brides who aren't "that happy" with their wedding photos. Maybe there absolutely isn't any way to actually really capture the huge magnitude of what you are feeling on the day of your wedding? Maybe brides look forward to their photos because they are waiting to be reminded of how completely radiant and overwhelmed with love and emotion they were feeling - and maybe the pictures they get back - although absolutely stunning to everyone, are just never going to measure up to how incredible it was in your mind. So maybe this is a blessing.

Maybe never having photos to bring down the feelings in your soul, is a blessing.

Over the years, technology will improve and photos will fade. Ironically - all the brides who request the beautiful vintage and old-school photos in a few years will have those beautiful vintage and old school photos - not because their modern photographer has worked so hard to achieve it, but because they just are. I will always remember this day as bright, as colourful, as wonderful and as completely radiant as it always was. Over all the years of time, our day will never be dulled by newer, brighter, more modern technology.

Our 'photos' will never fade.

Over time, we start forgetting things - and we rely on the pictures we have to help jog our memories. I will never have those pictures to peg our day onto. For me, as time goes on -  there is no way that my memory will start shifting and my mind will inadvertently 'start-remembering-the-day-as-the-photos-tell-me-it-was' I will only always remember it as vibrantly beautiful and amazing as I know and felt it was.

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We had the most glorious, spectacular and amazing day and for that I am eternally blessed and filled with gratitude. It was more than I could ever have dreamed our day to be.
and -

I will take no photos in exchange for the most gorgeous sunshine weather and the most indescribable sunset.
I will take no photos to have both sets of our parents - alive, happy, well and celebrating with us.
I will take no photos to have my dad walk me down the aisle, I will take no photos to have that special time to get ready with my mom, I will take no photos to have a crazy-show-down-dance-off with my little big brother.
I will take no photos to have family and friends flown in from London, Melbourne, Sydney, Dubai and across the country to share the day with us.
I will take no photos to have been surrounded by our closest and most amazing friends who made our day so special.
I will take no photos to have a day that was filled with a love so palpable, tangible and real that strangers took the time to email me.
I will take no photos to have found the one person who truly completes me. One person who makes it ok, not to have wedding photos because I don't need photos to remind me how amazing my life is, because I wake up to it every day.

Granted, I have had to make peace with a lot of things -

I will never have the exquisite couple shot that I had envisioned (in huge black and white canvas above our bed), I will never have the huge, happy, family wedding portrait to put on our mantle-piece. I will never have the beautiful snaps of all the wedding details that I worked so hard for over a year to craft and create. I will never have the perfect pictures of me in a gorgeous white dress getting ready with my mom and my bridesmaids. I will never have the heartfelt shot walking down the aisle with my dad and him giving me away to my new husband. I will never have a beautiful wedding album to one day show our children.

All I have is the vibrant, happy memory of a day that was alive with emotion and my little heart overflowing with love


{heavy sigh}

I'm ok with that.

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Natasha Marais said...

Oh Che, that whole 'I will take no photos' bit... crying over here! And you are so right. You are so blessed and I like you so so very much for knowing it x

Che Kershaw said...

ah thank you Tash! am sad - but there are definitely far far worse things in this world than not having wedding pictures. x

Jane Kilian said...

I'm SO sad for you, and sad for us following you not being able to see the amazingness that is Miss Che. If ever there was One person in the world I wished this would not happen to, or who didnt deserve it, is you. Sending love and wine xxx

GeeGee said...

I'm devasted for you, we just sat and read your blog and winced and feel awful for you both..and then I read your last part about the photos never quite living up to what you felt and realised that damnit, you'll have that feeling, and you will do 'the next best thing' of collecting photos and writing down all your memories in snippets that made up your day and that wont ever live up to what you experienced on the day. Sending you all the snot-rag-jumper-tears best wishes.

Melanie Heyns said...

My heart breaks for you Che. This is one of my worst nightmares for my wedding. The good thing is with all the photos taking by your guest at least you'll have some options. It's still so sad though.

Mel's Corner

Kerry said...

Devastating! I am so, so sorry Che! :( :(

Keri Bainborough said...

I wrote the longest comment ever and then then my phone died and I lost it. Just want you to know that I was at your wedding (obvs) and it was the best I've ever been to. I'm crying right now cos you and I planned everything together and it so easily could have happened to me and I can't imagine how you guys are feeling. I would swap my photos for your's just because I know how much time you spent agonizing over who to use and I know how much you love your photography and how important your wedding album was to you. My friend, your wedding was amazingly unbelievable and all of us who were there are testament to the fact that your and warren's wedding and your love for one another was palpable-we could all feel it and we basked in your glow like fat snakes in the sunshine. May your memories and love stand the test of time and your marriage outlast any silly photograph. Love you lots xxx to the moon and back x 100000000

Che Kershaw said...

thank you my beautiful friend. Your words are so special, I love you! and Cheers to love! x

Dan (the man that can) said...

if the hard drives are still around, I can get the pics off them. you may lose one or two only. Dan. let me know!

Che Kershaw said...

please do share the magical powers you have!! if we can get our hard drive to you - will you WORK your magic?!?

Dan said...

email me or Skype daniel2 I'm sure it's salvageable

dan said...


Dee said...

I feel so bad for you. Teared up a bit at the "I will take no photos" bit. So sorry.

sheila said...

Aah... Very sad. I too had a bad wedding photo experience. My photographer chose a elephant hunt over my wedding 2 days before the event and sent his wife to fill in. Over exposed, disasters is what I have. Didn't even have a couple shot to send to the paper! Gathered photo's from friends and trash the dress shoot but haven't had the heart to print an album. I do loathe looking through other brides albums and want to bawl my eyes out. But know its the marriage that counts and not the pics. ; ) Sorry gal

Mariska van Wyk said...

So sorry this happened to the most awesome bride ever :( - I can relate a little. I haven't lost wedding photos, but I have lost the entire box of my mom's letters, photos, family albums, etc. I have about 5 photos of her. She loved writing and wrote the most beautiful pieces. She had kep all of her high school and wedding and ghe burth of us three kids memorabilia and everything is gone. My dad lost it in one of his many relocation expeditions. I would have loved to have them so I can remember her better. Photosnreally are the best for triggering memories.

This is such a beautiful bitter-sweet post.


Christine said...

OMG! This is just any girl's worst nightmare! To me, the most important part of a wedding, beyond the groom (you did a great job with that, so total win on that front) are the photos! Hopefully all the loved ones in your life will be able to help you piece together a gorgeous account of your wedding day, even if it isn't the glamorous album you might have envisioned! If not I am sure your dad would be only too happy to pay for Wedding # 2 on the 6 April 2014 :p

A Daft Scots Lass said...

I am just devastated that this happened to you. I can't imagine how you feel and after I'm bragging to EVERYONE and sundry of the perfect wedding day you had and how you put so much detail into every second of your wedding still have those memories but just not print out. I'm so so so sorry.

Hasmita said...

As a girl who got married, and also agonized of every last detail of my wedding, I totally get where you are coming from. I couldn't wait to see ,y photos and was over the moon when we got them, but now, 2 years after the wedding, we've looked at the pictures once or twice. They're nice to have, but no one can touch or taint your memories. Your relationship will change as time passes and maybe you won't even recognize the girl in the photos anymore.i know I've changed in the 2 years since we've been married, and our relationship has too- for the better. I promise you, it seems like the worst thing in the world right now, but at least you still have your husband. In a year from now, you won't even think about it anymore. Promise! xx hasmita

Jonathan said...

Hi Che

So sad about your wedding pics. But soon you will be able to relive your most special day when you get to see your wedding video. All those precious memories and more are on there.

All the best...

Jonathan & Karen

Alida Ryder said...

This is so devastating. Let me just tell you that, yes, it is nice to have those photos. The ones that are more 'professional' looking, etc. But I can tell you now, these two photos you've just posted are so much more special. They show the life and love which was so obviously part of your wedding. I asked my photographer to only take a few of the 'weddingy' photos but more of the actual party, speeches and people. My most treasured photos are in fact those that my friends took of the evening. Your attitude towards the whole thing is pretty inspiring, I would've been an absolute wreck and would've been contemplating re-doing the entire wedding. ;) x

Che Kershaw said...

Thank you SO much - My dad has watched the video and he said it is beautiful - Warren's dad is bringing it over for us - we can't WAIT to watch it! x

Claudz said...

:( This post made me sooo sad! This is terrible!! My boss' photographer never showed up. My in-laws have one wedding photo as the photographer skipped the country the day after their wedding never to be seen again. No photos!
You are so awesome for being so positive about this. And those two photos are pretty frikkin awesome!! It's the love and the memories that last, not the photos.

Kirsty said...

I am so terribly sorry, this was a hard post to read, the tears are flowing, jeepers. sending love, hugs and strength xxx

Johlet said...

Oh no I think this is a brides worst nightmare!!! :( xxx

lil me said...

You will be amazed at the photos that your friends and family come forth with. THOSE photos are the ones that really CAPTURE the essence of what you were feeling and all that mushy gushy love. :) And from what i have seen on your BLOG alone..there are PLENTY to that HAVE captured those moments. (even though you may not have EVERY moment captured.. the ones you do have you will cherish that much more.)

Photographs may be able to capture a MOMENT but the love you have can last FOREVER.

Pearl said...

So sorry to hear that your weddings photos got lost. I know how heartbroken you must feel right now but I'm sure that all your friends pics and your wedding video will cheer you up. To be honest the best photos from my wedding were the ones my friends took because they weren't staged and they captured the moment perfectly. The professional ones were beautiful but I think we've only looked at them once or twice since we got married two years ago...Personally I'd put any of these two pics above on top of my mantelpiece. You both look so gorgeous and happy in these photos!

Jade said...

Just teared up a little bit, not at the thought of your wedding photos being lost (although I feel bad for you about that). But I teared up at your beautiful memories and your determination to turn your frown upside down. Xxx

PipsH said...

Ain't no bride with a blog that captures the romance of the proposal, the agonizing prep into the wedding details, the humour of wedding planning and the excitement of spending the rest of your life with someone like you have and DEFS no bride with a blog that makes every single girl wish, hope and pray they find love, happiness and a man like you have! Brides with 'real' wedding albums got nothing on you!

Kat Forsyth said...

Waaa! I totally commented on this the other day, but it's gone. Unless you hated my comment, which I doubt. But you never know. :-) Anyway, I'm distraught for you. And of course there are many worse things in life than having no wedding pics, but that doesn't mean it's not heartbreaking. I too had a wedding planning blog (in no way equal to the awesomeness of yours, like at ALL), knew exactly what I wanted from my wedding and my photos, and in fact fell so in love with wedding photography that I became a wedding photographer. I can't even imagine how destroyed I would have been to get no pics. I feel so bad for you!
On the up side, your sunglasses-wearing-self seems awesome in the pics that exist.

Che Kershaw said...

ah thank you for the comment! (i haven't received any others) have been so heartbroken over the pics :( but... there is not much we can do except just get on with our happy marriage and not think about it :( sob. My heart still gets very sad whenever I think of the gorgeous pics we could have had! :(

Che Kershaw said...

ah thank you for the comment Pips - such a lovely comment - will have to come back and read it every time I think about the gorgeous pics that could have been! x

Che Kershaw said...

thank you for the comment jade! sob - have been a very sad girl - but life is good so we can't complain! x

Che Kershaw said...

ah thank you for the comment! I know exactly how you feel! (cannot believe he sent his wife to fill in!) we also don't have a pic to send to the paper - but i think a trash the dress shoot is definitely in order! *cheers to brides with no wedding pics!*

Che Kershaw said...

ah thank you for the comment Dee :( sad girl!

Che Kershaw said...

Ah Mariska! thank you for the comment - that is so sad about the letters and photos that you lost - im so sorry :( I can only perhaps feel a tiny SMIDGEON of how you must feel. x

Che Kershaw said...

haha - i know! i was also so desperate to show everyone our awesome wedding pics! but I will have to scrape together a few pics that I do have and do some wedding re-cap posts anyway and just post them. But it's super hard to feel excited about wedding things without any nice pictures to show for it! :(

Suzanne Amlin said...

This is so sad! I get sad when normal, everyday photos get deleted, I can't even imagine such a big day going poof! My boyfriend's cousin got a raw detail when it came to wedding photos too. She had booked a Victorian style mansion to shoot photos in, post ceremony. It was only booked for an hour and was a few miles down the road so everyone hurried to this mansion right after the mass and didn't bother taking photos at the church. When we got there, it turns out someone was LIVING in the mansion. The owners had rented the place out and didn't bother notifying her. She wasn't able to take pictures at that location and by then, it was too dark to go back and take photos at the church. When she called the landlord, they apologized, said they would refund her and reschedule her. Reschedule? Really? That's awesome considering every single person attending the wedding was from out of town :( You just can't recreate wedding photos.

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