One of the first things I learned about John and Theresa was that their first date was NINE hours long – they met in Logan Square at Longman and Eagle, and from there they hit up a block party and had beers, played board games, saw a movie, got some late night pizza, and shared a walk home. They went to Revolution Brewing on their second date, and here we all found ourselves a few years later, watching them say their vows to one another in that same place.
Their day began a little differently than most wedding days, which is one of the many reasons why I loved it so much – they stayed the night beforehand at their apartment together (and got a good night of sleep!), and kissed each other goodbye that morning as Theresa made her way to her friend’s place to get her hair done. Instead of having all of her bridesmaids there, she simply had two friends getting ready with her – it was one of the calmest getting ready processes I’ve been part of, and I felt like I was amongst friends as they excitedly talked about the day ahead. Theresa and John first saw each other in their wedding day garb in Palmer Square Park, and then we spent the afternoon roaming around the neighborhood where they met and live and have created a life together.
As they walked up the stairs at Revolution and rounded the corner once we arrived, they entered their decorated venue for the first time that day, and Theresa clasped her hands over her mouth as tears filled her eyes. There are these tiny moments that happen on wedding days that make everything feel a little more real – when you realize this thing you’ve excitedly planned for and thought about with your significant other is not only here, but it’s everything you hoped it would be, and then some, and that’s exactly what I imagine this moment was like for Theresa.
During their ceremony, a loved one read a poem by Rupi Kaur, and I now wonder if I was emphatically nodding my head from behind my camera as I heard it because I can’t imagine something that describes Theresa and John any better:
“I do not want to have you
to fill the empty parts of me
I want to be full on my own
I want to be so complete
I could light a whole city
I want to have you
cause the two of us combined
could set it on fire”
Theresa and John are two people who know exactly who they are and what they care about, and you can tell this by being with them both singularly and together. Writing about them right now is easy, because getting to know and observing and loving them is easy, which became so obvious to me as I photographed them with their family and friends as the night went on. The toasts from their friends and family were heartfelt and beautiful, and their dance floor was, without a doubt, one of the most fun, wild, joyous things I’ve ever seen. (Every so often I have a wedding with a dance floor that’s SO DAMN GOOD, and full, and fun that I wish I were in the middle of it, too – this was one of those dance floors.) These two and their friends and family got after it until closing time, and then everyone surrounded them with sparklers as they walked down the street for the after party. These two did it in a way that was entirely them, and it was absolutely perfect.