Anastasija and Josh were supposed to get married in Vancouver, British Columbia on April 3rd in front of 135 guests coming from all over Canada, the States, and Latvia. The bride is originally from Latvia, so for her it was important to invite loved ones from her home country.
Anastasija: “Everything was going great! We had everything planned, bought, and rented. We had our honeymoon in November. So we were on top of things. Everything was ready to go.
About one month before our wedding we started to hear about the Coronavirus spreading from China to Italy, then Spain. But we weren’t worried at all. We thought it wouldn’t affect us. Then a few weeks later the honeymoon got canceled. And then my sister-in-law, who was supposed to provide us with a lot of the decorations, got stuck in Europe. So I started working on plan B and reached out to a lot of vendors to find some help. Soon people started messaging us that they can’t come out. We had to rearrange our seating chart. It was a mess, but we said ‘ok, we are just going to roll with it.”
Josh: “As we were trying to work on our backup plan, we had the idea to have a backyard wedding at my parent’s house. That was the day when I realized that we weren’t going to be able to have all of the friends and family, because of the restrictions. Telling people that we weren’t able to have them at our wedding anymore was really hard!”
Anastasija: “It was heartbreaking to choose which friends were closer than the other. But we were still planning to do the wedding, and started to look into different rentals. Four days later I got a phone call from my sister saying that she can’t risk her little daughter and son coming over to the wedding, so she was going to come alone. And then from Josh’s side of the family somebody had a fever. So we started realizing that this Corona thing has been overtaking too much at this point.
Josh and I set down, prayed, talked about it and realized that we really have to cancel our wedding. And now that everything is canceled, we were like ‘it’s just a date in the calendar. We can either postpone to next year or move it closer.’ And we made a spontaneous decision to let’s just get married on Sunday!”
Josh: “We’ve already gone through two wedding cancelations. With a potential of postponing it for three more weeks deeper into April meant we could be in a lockdown situation. Not being able to do anything. We wouldn’t be able to see each other at all.”
Anastasija: “On Saturday morning we told our parents and closest friends that it’s done, we can’t do it. Messaging to our friends (to the people we decided to invite to the “50 people wedding”) was heartbreaking. We had to tell them ‘not only you guys can’t come, we are actually moving our wedding to tomorrow’.
It went from a 135 to 50 to less than 15 people. We broke down in tears so many times just thinking about telling our bridal party that they are not part of the wedding anymore. But we said it’s ok, we are just going to do a celebration later.
It was a small, intimate ceremony in the living room with just our immediate family. Since our limo didn’t take our cancelation, we decided to go get some pictures taken with it. Thankfully our photographer was also available on that day.
In the limo we were talking with Josh’s best man about how blessed we felt by our friends. They have been so understanding and patient with us. As we were saying that we started approaching the street where our photos were supposed to be taken. We started to see balloons and cars and I thought ‘ah great, someone is having a party here and we won’t be able to park our huge limo.’ But Josh’s best man told us to roll down our window and as we were driving I started to recognize all the people outside. ‘These are our friends from church!’ Everybody was screaming, shouting, and honking.”
Josh: “Our whole young adults group with their family and friends were there. They all planned to come together, and set up this kind of “tailgate party” with balloons, decorated cars, and signs. Everybody stayed in their cars, on top of them, came through sunroofs, and rolled down windows. But they did not walk away from it.”
Anastasija: “They didn’t come up to give us a hug. They didn’t even come up to take pictures. When our limo stopped we came out and ran up the street. Josh and I couldn’t stop crying. We were so amazed by how much love they have shown to us.
Someone said ‘Let’s turn up the same radio! You need to have your first dance!’ So here we are in the middle of the street having our first dance. It was so unreal and magical!
Being able to spread that joy and hope in the middle of something so ugly is beautiful. But we didn’t even plan for it! Our friend Jean took some pictures and posted on Facebook. Little did we know the next day we had 3-4k shares and then two days later over 35k. We were in news, radios, magazine articles. We are getting messages from people. I didn’t think that this would make such a big impact. But if it does, that’s great! Because we want people to know that there is hope, there is joy in the midst of all this trash that’s happening with Coronavirus.”
Josh: “How we met was God. How I proposed was also God going above and beyond. And then here we are thinking that His plan for us was a venue wedding. But instead God’s plan was this small, intimate wedding in my parent’s living room. And then He gets to use this opportunity, using us, to share just that little bit of light coming through the clouds.”
Anastasija: “In the midst of this our faith was shaking up a little bit. In the past year we have been going to our friends weddings where everything was so perfect and smooth. And then two weeks before our wedding everything is canceled. Everything is down the drain! And it was very hard to be like ‘no, God is still in control! He still knows what He is doing.’
Having this wedding day made us feel so loved from everybody. And we just want to spread that love everywhere. Across the world!”
It’s so important for all of us to believe that there is a reason for everything in life. Something is going to happen, we just don’t know it. Anastasija and Josh were originally planning to have 135 guests, but now they have thousands of people getting inspired and emotional from their wedding. It’s something they would have never thought of having!
Josh: “It’s our story to share, but we are getting all of this publicity from something that we didn’t plan. In a circumstance that we never could have planned for in the first place.”
Anastasija: “Initially we were planning to redo our wedding with all of our family and friends as soon as everything calms down. But when our wedding had turned out to be the way it is, we said no. ‘This is our official wedding day. This is greater, better and much crazier than we had planned.’ Hopefully by summer everything calms down and people start to get together again, we are going to have just a BBQ and get our family and friends together.”
Josh: “What we wanted to do is get married sooner rather than later. I didn’t want to put Anastasija through planning a 3rd or 4th wedding, because we don’t know how long this is going to be going for. A lot of venues aren’t even taking bookings right now until half way through the summer. So for us it didn’t even make sense to wait that long. We were paying rent together, even though I wasn’t living here at that time.”
Anastasija: “The question is: Is your wedding for people or for you? For us it was very much so for us. We are getting married. It’s our day and whether it’s just Josh and I, or 30 thousand people across the world, what mattered to us is that we are getting married. April 3rd was the date in the calendar for those 135 people that were supposed to be there. But as soon as that got canceled, it’s just us. Us starting our life together.
I think it really depends if it’s a couple that’s already living together. Their wedding may just be the celebration for them. Then of course. If they can postpone it, by all means. But I think for couples that really want to start their life together, we recommend just doing it. And allow your friends to be there for you. Maybe via Skype or FaceTime. Maybe not directly giving you hugs, flowers and gifts, but that can all happen in a little while. A celebration can still happen at any time, but at this point it’s between you and the person you love.”
Connect with Anastasija and Josh:
Anastasija’s Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/napanasova
Josh’s Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/joshwdavis13
Anastasija’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/anastasija.davis/
Josh’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/joshwdavis/
Did you have a Quarantine Wedding? Share your story with us!