We have the privilege of interviewing Natalie, from Australia, about her experience as a bride in a wheelchair. Welcome!
1. Can you tell readers a bit about yourself?
Natalie: Traveling is definitely my favourite, but I also enjoy going to concerts, seeing movies, reading, and doing shopping. I love spending time with my two dogs and making myself a cup of tea, which is the most I can do independently. I have SMA, a form of muscular dystrophy, and use a power wheelchair, in which a team of female carers assist me with daily duties.
2. Can you share your love story and how you got there?
Natalie: Our mutual friends played a little matchmaking prank for what I believed was supposed to be a girls movie night. I, of course, showed up in my pajamas to my friend’s place. At the door, there he was, standing with a huge smile on his face. We clicked from there and saw each other every week for about a month before he officially asked me out. Falling in love with him was easy. He accepted me for all of me, and never let my disability get in the way of our relationship. Before I met him, I never thought of getting married because I never believed it’d be possible for me—with him, wedding planning was all I did in my head! Years later, he proposed Christmas morning with everyone there. It was extremely awkward knowing everyone was watching, and the spotlight was all on me, because I’m such an introvert and prefer private moments. It was definitely a shock—I never thought he’d actually ask me—but an amazing moment I will never forget! My mum was crying, I was crying.
3. What was the wedding planning like?
Natalie: As I mentioned, I’d already had this planned out for years. We did choose the venue together, but I chose everything else like colour scheme, flowers, cake, etc. The challenging part was getting the perfect dress, which I found online. I’m extremely self-conscious about the curve in my spine so I was worried everything would make me look “bent.” I ended up choosing a two-piece wedding outfit, which was a skirt and a top, and then I dressed up my look by adding a sparkly veil/flower crown. Having my mum and bridesmaids helping kept me calm and excited on the big day. I wish I chose a lightweight bouquet that was easy to hold. Mine was a bit heavy, so I had to lay it across my legs as I rolled down the aisle so that I could hold my brother’s hand as he gave me away.
4. Did you have a great honeymoon?
Natalie: We did! I wanted to be in my power wheelchair, so we opted for a cruise. When we usually travel, I’m in my manual wheelchair. On this five-day cruise, we were able to leave the ship in Tasmania and see the town. Everything was so relaxing and we both ate way too much food! The only down fall was my power wheelchair would never fully charge due to the ship’s voltage percentage.
5. What is the best part about the relationship with your spouse?
Natalie: Apart from being so kind and understanding towards me and my needs—plus he’s always there to help family and friends—I love how funny he is! He accepts me and I accept him just the way he is too. We build a good relationship on trust and communication, and fun travel holidays.
6. What advice do you have for other brides in wheelchairs?
Natalie: Don’t stress and get a planner/journal! Your partner has chosen to fall in love with you for a reason, so your partner isn’t going to care what you wear on your wedding day. If you don’t find a dress first go, keep looking or think outside the box, like pairing pants with a top or doing a top and skirt like me. Also, get comfortable shoes. I chose white bridal flat slip on shoes that had pearls and lace on them as well as a ribbon that tied up my legs. They were so comfortable on the day and looked so pretty for the photos. Make it your own day!
From the husband:
1. What was it like to fall in love with your wife?
Cameron: It was amazing to see how she never let her disability get in the way of her personality. She’s extremely funny, happy, and constantly cracking cheesy jokes.
2. In regards to the wedding planning, what do you think was the hardest/most challenging part?
Cameron: The planning wasn’t hard because we already knew everything we wanted before being engaged. We both love the same things so there was nothing stressful about it.
3. What was the best part about the wedding?
Cameron: Seeing Natalie drive down the aisle to marry me. She had the sun behind her and she looked amazing.
4. What do you love most about your wife?
Cameron: That she’s always positive and happy, a pure chirpy girl.
Talk about an inspirational couple! Let us know if you can watch this video without a tear in your eye 💕While editing this video, we must have watched it 100 times, yet still fight the emotion of reliving this incredible day. These are some of the most beautiful speeches we have heard.Cameron + Natalie have overcome so many challenges, but their friendship and love they have for each other knows no bounds!Natalie has a condition called Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) which is a genetic condition that affects the nerves that control muscle movement.Cameron really sums up Natalie in his speech – While she may be in a wheelchair, Nat really is the most positive, and adventurous person you will ever meet. Cameron has a heart of gold and is such a genuine, down to earth guy.We are so incredibly privileged to be the ones they choose to document their wedding day.We hope you love watching their highlight as much as we enjoyed filming and editing it.Venue: Crowne Plaza Hawkesbury Weddings#sma #weddingvideo #everlaststudios #Spinalmuscularstrophy #weddingkilt #beSMAaware #weddingphotography
Posted by EverlastStudios on Thursday, November 1, 2018
Natalie & Cameron’s wedding video and photos were shot by EverlastStudios.
To stay up on new blog posts and announcements, sign up for the Brides In Wheelchairs newsletter.