Real Wedding: Veronica & Richard – Photography by Joshua Kane Wood

Our parents were college roommates who became best friends, so we’ve grown up together. I think that’s what makes our relationship so special — it evolved from a bond that existed between our families.

Growing up together means we share a lot of the same interests and values, and it made the “family introduction” much less terrifying. When I was 19, my mother passed away after a hard-fought battle with cancer. I was in college, separated from my family, and struggling to keep up with everything going on around me. Ricky and I weren’t a couple, but the unconditional love he showed me during that time kept me afloat in the darkest moments. What I love most about Ricky is his optimism. He has infinite patience and welcomes everyone with a profound appreciation for who they are. I was in France for work and organised a weekend trip to Paris to meet a friend, but her plans kept changing. After originally telling me she couldn’t meet me at all, she then said she was delayed and could see me that afternoon. When I arrived, Ricky was there instead, and got down on one knee. The whole thing had been a set up! It’s hard to put into words how we felt on our wedding day. There was an overwhelming amount of love. We got ready at our childhood homes with our best friends and families. We had our first look at the venue so we could spend more time together before our guests arrived. Our venue was a big, quirky outdoor space surrounded by concrete walls and graffiti in Miami’s Wynwood Art District. We had food trucks instead of a sit-down dinner, a doughnut wall instead of a wedding cake, and a New Orleans-style jazz band that kept our guests on the dance floor all night. Compromise has been the most powerful tool in our relationship to date. Everyone has their own needs, but when you can put those needs aside to meet your partner in the middle, it creates a special kind of vulnerability. It is a reassurance to know that someone will always have your best interest at heart.

Photography—Joshua Kane | Groom’s tuxedo—Manny’s Formal Wear | Ceremony venue—Gesu Catholic Church, Miami | Bride’s dress—Inbal Dror | Hair—Haus of Lunamane | Makeup—Gina Dearing | Flora—Miami Centerpieces | Gift registry—Honeyfund, Macy’s, Crate & Barrel | Bride’s shoes—Angela Nuran | Groom’s ring–Made by a relative | Special song—‘Can’t Take My Eyes Off You’ by Frankie Valli | Catering—Essence Caterers | Donut wall—Salty donut | Reception venue—MAPS Backlot | Entertainment—Music Machine