Embracing the Unexpected: In Your Photos and in Life!
I had a blog post planned for today dedicated to my younger brother, Jules, in honor of he and Kylie’s wedding anniversary. Then today, like with many things in the last year, plans completely changed. Originally, I wanted to share my brother’s engagement session with his beautiful bride alongside a super mushy writeup that I thought would be sweet. As I was reading over the final version of that story, I remembered memories from the best session I’ve ever been a part of - a mini session with Jules and Kylie from the fall before they got engaged and said “I do.”
For this 2019 session, we planned a cute cuddle fest downtown but the rain had other plans, forcing us to take shelter inside of the Rock-N-Bowl in downtown Lafayette. While inside rolling with the punches, so to speak, we took the opportunity to document the experience, which turned out way better than we’d hoped. We found a few cozy corners for the couple to snuggle in, including an old bank vault that was insanely intriguing to me. While I wasn’t totally prepared for the indoor lighting conditions and can’t wait to return to “do it better” - it still photographed beautifully considering.
We bought ourselves some beer and visited while still shooting (which is now "goals" for all of my engagement sessions; hint, hint!) I admit - we were all feeling good by the time we got to the last few in the session, but it wasn’t just the bubbles on the brews that had us feeling warm and fuzzy.
Jules and Kylie talked to me pretty intimately about the challenges they faced as a couple and how they just wanted to be married and be celebrated. Stress from the world around and pressure from others can sometimes draw away from your happiness - which is why I wanted to put my arms around them and let them know how much they were both loved. Today, I wanted to remind them of this session and to live every day this way. It was a day where they forgot about all the stress and just enjoyed loving each other. As a sister, I want nothing more than to support my little brother and to always see him as happy as he was in these photos.
Today, here in 2021, as I’m scrambling to collect the best moments from this shoot - completely replanning this blog, struggling to find only the best words to use to congratulate him and Kylie on their one-year milestone, his own writings pop into my newsfeed. I gladly hit the backspace key because I truly couldn’t have written it better myself!
Here is the full-length story about today’s significance from my younger brother Jules! I hope as you read it you also feel the love and share in celebrating Mr. & Mrs. Jules Guidry.
“Life has a funny way of giving you plenty of unexpected events. There are certain things in life I simply couldn’t envision for myself growing up. Things like driving, buying my own vehicle, going to college, living on my own, and marriage were things that my little child brain couldn’t fully comprehend. But life stepped in and, slowly but surely, my child brain grew up and the uncertainty became certain. I drove myself to class in high school, made my way to college and bought my first vehicle, and got to move out on my own when I married the love of my life.
The journey of Kylie and I is full of twists and turns, and is far from what some would consider traditional, but it worked for us. Things began in, in my opinion, the worst place to start a relationship. Social Media. To this day Kylie and I are not sure how we began following each other on Instagram all those years ago, but that’s where it all started. But things did not take off right away for us. I was very interested in Kylie, but... Kylie didn’t exactly share those feelings. But, what started as a few harmless likes on her photos, blossomed into a private message which would eventually lead to her reluctantly giving me her number. This was Kylie’s way of hopefully getting rid of me, she had no idea just how stubborn I was or what I had in store.
Fast forward 4 years, Kylie still hadn’t gotten rid of me. The four years we spent dating brought us some rough times, but also some absolutely amazing ones. It was the time we needed to grow together and prepare ourselves for the rest of our lives.
In the midst of our relationship, COVID reared its ugly head. Emotionally, mentally and financially things were hard. I knew that Kylie could no longer live on her own as she had been, and the stress was beginning to take its toll on me as well. Little did we know our answer would quickly be upon us.
My mother gave me an idea that would forever change our lives. The solution was simple, speak with a priest, give him the situation, and pray that things align in our favor. Now, I will be the first to tell you that Kylie and I seem to have the most written luck. However, luck was not needed. The time just so happened to be right for us. The priest that married it explained it the best. He prayed and asked if there was any reason for Kylie and I not to move forward, that it present itself before us. This brought us PLENTY of roadblocks before we could be wed. But every block in the way was swept aside or pushed past. On April 19th, 2020, just 14 days after I finally popped the question to Kylie, we were married.
This date may or may not be a surprise to some of you. We decided to receive our sacrament, but due to the restrictions of Covid, we decided to keep this ceremony very limited. We chose to have father, Kylie and I, and our best man/matron of honor join us while we joined together with God. For those that could unfortunately not be in attendance with us, but we still wanted to be a part of our day, were able to watch along via live stream. Tough choices needed to be made, but looking back I wouldn’t change it for anything. It was simple, beautiful, and oh so intimate. I hope that you all understand that this was the best decision for us and for the family we are trying to build.
However, this isn’t where the story ends for us. There was more we wanted to do after receiving our sacrament. We wanted to have the bells and whistles, drinks, family and friends join us. So a gorgeous venue was selected, invitations went out, and we did it all over again. It’s a beautiful thing to be able to share an anniversary with your spouse and it’s pretty special that I get to do it twice with the same woman. Although there are two different dates, for Kylie and I, the wedding we shared on March 20th, 2021 was a continuation of what we started in April almost a full year prior.
Today we celebrate the beginning of our journey as a married couple. We do still ask that you celebrate March 20th, 2021 with us. On that date in 2022, we will be eating our wedding cake again.
As I stated before, things with us were never quite traditional. They say you should treat your spouse like it’s your anniversary every day. For Kylie and me that isn’t just something to remember, it’s how we live every day.
This is our story. It was a roller coaster ride but we made it. There are so many people that helped us along the way. There’s no way I could possibly thank you all.”