Andrew & Carley: Rwanda
Juliana Laury Photography | Chester County, Lehigh Valley, and Montgomery County Wedding Photographer
There’s a deep and honest bond that happens when you travel thousands of miles to the home country of a close friend to photograph a wedding that you never could have prepared yourself for or even imagined you would witness in your lifetime. It’s the roller coaster ride of excitement, confusion, celebration, discovery, and exhaustion that bring you together. The opportunity to embark on this journey with Carley and Andrew came suddenly and without hesitation, my instincts telling me to go make this dream a reality before I could second guess myself. To be honest, I was scared. For the first time I was showing up to the biggest event in two people’s lives without knowing the language, the location, the people, or what was even coming next moment to moment. I had to let go of the control I was so used to feeling inside of myself, trust my instincts, and make sure that I never put my camera down for fear of missing something that I would never see again. It was a magical experience to say the least. Traditional ceremonies that go back generations unfolded all around me, an entire village of people clapped and sang, 2,000 strong over the course of 2 days, and wrapping up with a portrait session amid the wilderness of an African safari, Carley’s dress covered in dust, sweat dripping down our faces, and two of the biggest smiles I have ever seen on them as we watched the sun burn through the hills and set the sky ablaze. I am grateful to my very core for this experience. I cannot thank the Bilindabagabo family enough for moving heaven and earth to make all of this happen. It was a miracle to witness everything come together for two of the most deserving people I have ever met.