When Nick Norwood and his fiancé, Shyanne, were preparing for their wedding in 2017, the groom realized that a loss he’d suffered over a year prior was still haunting him more than he’d expected. The death of his mother, which occurred in 2016, was weighing on his mind more than ever as he prepared to walk down the aisle with his bride.
The couple knew they wanted to find a way to include Norwood’s mother in their wedding. And the way that his wife-to-be ultimately chose to do so, which Norwood revealed in a meaningful Reddit post a year after the fact, had people shedding tears worldwide.
Shyanne explained to Yahoo! Lifestyle that she had been struggling with how to support her fiancé, who was dealing with something she had no experience feeling or understanding.
“Part of me wanted him to be super excited for our wedding and I didn’t understand, obviously, because I haven’t lost a parent,” she revealed.
Inspiration struck, though, when she started to plan their “first-look” photo shoot, which would document Norwood’s first opportunity to see his bride in her wedding gown.
Getting her mother in on the plan, she blindfolded Nick and had her mother drive them to an unexpected location for the photos. When Nick was finally allowed to open his eyes, he was given a double dose of emotion—not only was he seeing Shyanne in her dress for the first time, he was doing it next to his mother’s grave.
“My mom died not too long before my wedding,” shared Norwood, writing about the experience on Reddit. “I’d tell my fiancé days leading up to our big day that I wish my mom could be apart of it somehow. My fiancé secretly planned our first look at my mom’s grave.”
The experience was both solemn and emotional for the couple, who had been grappling with Nick’s torn emotions leading up to the big day.
“I was surprised, because I was so excited and anxious to marry the love of my life, and I felt like … missing my mom started all over,” Nick says.
His mother, Dorothy, was given a special moment in memoriam at the wedding as well; the couple arranged to have Shyanne’s wedding ring tied to Dorothy’s Bible so her presence would be felt at the ceremony.
Although there’s no way to truly get over the grief of losing a parent, perhaps there’s some consolation ahead for the couple, for more recently, the couple witnessed the birth of their first child, a precious gift filled with potential happiness in the years to come.