'The important part of the wedding is our yes to each other. Everything else is confetti'
By Joaquin Reloj
On February 27, 2021, Doctors Enrik John T. Aguila and Marion Frances P. Causing were able to tie the knot which only goes to show that not even a global pandemic can come between two people in love. The newlyweds celebrated their intimate wedding at St. John Bosco Parish Makati followed by a wonderful little reception at The Blue Leaf Events Pavilion.
Unlike most love stories, Enrik and Marion’s relationship is far from what people would consider love-at-first-sight. Instead, their love for each other grew over time, 13 years to be exact. The couple has shared countless memorable experiences with one another from being in college, becoming mission volunteers, and attending medical school.
“Enrik and I have known each other for 13 years now and for us, it wasn’t actually love at first sight. We’ve met each other through a Catholic youth community as mission volunteers and we’ve been close friends way before we ever thought about getting together,” says Marion.
“In fact, prior to getting together, Enrik had a Kuya attached to his name. We grew closer after college because we both went to the same medical school (Ateneo School of Medicine and Public Health) and because we both juggled medicine and mission work.” It was Marion who first developed romantic feelings for Enrik, secretly crushing on him for about a year before he eventually showed intentions of courting her.
Their love also helped them conquer tough times. “After about 6 years of being friends, Enrik gathered up the courage. We were together for 7 years as boyfriend-girlfriend and for the both of us, it was our relationship that became our light in the grueling world of finishing medical school, going on hospital duties, taking board exams, and going through residency training in our own respective specialities as doctors.”
The couple made it a point to always have time for each other, even in the face of all the stress of medical school. “We had a formula to our relationship: we study out, we eat, we watch movies, we talk about our day, we listen to stories and we slip little adventures in every now and then.”
Oftentimes, it truly is the little things that create the biggest impacts. “In our relationship, we’ve learned that love is not necessarily about the big things but also about the day-to-day things that you choose to do and say to each other and for each other. It’s not necessarily all fireworks, most often, it’s like a billion street lights, emitting light that’s warm and bright just the same.”
It was in February 2020 when Enrik proposed to Marion, which was a month before quarantines and lockdowns were officially implemented in the Philippines. In spite of the looming restrictions, the couple was already set on celebrating their intimate wedding on February 27, 2021. They were more than sure that this was the date they wanted.
“Even then, we were planning to get married on February 27, 2021, with about 250 guests and actually already booked our church and reception venue with that in mind.” However, more unfortunate circumstances arose throughout the duration of the pandemic. As safety guidelines and regulations changed constantly, the couple had to make some crucial decisions.
“When the pandemic struck hard, it was becoming apparent that we would have to make a choice to either postpone the wedding to a later date so as to allow the number of guests that we wanted or to push through with the plan with a limited number of guests.” In the end, they chose to keep the date and trimmed their guest list down which turned into an even more intimate wedding celebration.
“It took us a year to plan the wedding. One of the major challenges for us was making the guest list since we had to cut it down to 80 guests. However, since we have a lot of loved ones that we wanted to celebrate the day with, we handled this challenge by making use of live streaming services of Youtube and Zoom.” Despite these changes, the couple found that the route they chose actually presented a favorable outcome.
It made their wedding more accessible to people who wouldn’t have been able to physically attend the celebration and reception with or without the threat of a global pandemic. “That was actually a good move because then even our relatives and friends from different parts of the world were able to celebrate with us up until the end of our reception.”
Throughout their planning, they also experienced some extensive issues regarding venues. “Another major challenge we faced was that we had to move our reception venue twice during our preparation due to pandemic protocols of particular institutions. Our final reception venue was booked less than a month from the wedding, and that included booking a lot of new suppliers as well.”
Regardless, the newlyweds were more than happy with how their intimate wedding turned out. They were determined to tie the knot and no amount of challenges would change that. “In the end, however, things worked out for good and we were able to pull off what we wanted which was actually pretty simple.”
It was more important for the couple to make their guests feel the love and comfort that they’ve nurtured for so long. They wanted to radiate that same feeling with everyone else who witnessed their wedding. “What we really wanted was for our wedding to just show our story as raw as it came. We wanted our guests to feel the warmth of home that we’ve experienced with each other.”
“What we learned ultimately during the preparation for the wedding was that the important part of the wedding is our yes to each other. Everything else is confetti. Realizing what’s important to us a couple made letting go of certain things in the preparation easier.” Marion recalls as she looks back on how they managed to pull off their wedding ceremony and reception, even in the face of a global pandemic.
The couple was aware of how important flexibility and resiliency were during the planning. Being prepared for changes along the way is essential, especially in light of the current circumstances. “We learned to be fluid and to adjust. During the pandemic, we have to embrace uncertainties because we never know what happens next. In a way, it makes the experience more exciting.”
For couples hoping to have an intimate wedding of their own, Marion highlights the significance having confidence in your partner and getting the right suppliers. “Practical tips from a super chill bride: try to get the suppliers you can trust. This reduced the stress level for me by 40%, the other 40% reduced by a super hands-on groom.”
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The Intimate Wedding Dream Team
Planning and Coordination: Jhune Salud Events | Church: St. John Bosco Parish, Makati | Reception: The Blue Leaf Events Pavillion | Photo: COLOVE STUDIOS | Video: The Spark Series | Host: Edroy Lim | Prep Place: JnJ Guesthouse | Bridal Gown Designer: Teena Sabrina Tan | Bridal Prep Robe: La Rosa Bridal | Groom's Suit: Gardini Fashion Center | Entourage Ties: Noveltie MNL | Bridal HMUA: Mhoy Vistan Almazan | Entourage HMUA: MAKE UP BY YVE GALANG | GroomsmenGifts: Pinwheel | Bride Squad gifts: Lazada Wedding Artefacts | Groom's Boutonniere Cabuchon: La Mia Gioia ph | Rosary for Bouquet: Maria and I | Florist: Dangwa florist | Bridal Car: HP Bridal | Invites: Alikha | Lights and Sounds: Sound Level Production Equipment Rental | Styling: Ariel Rodriguez Penarroyo | TPC Mervin Galang | Food: Bizu Catering Studio | Grazing boxes: Cocktails Manila | Wine: Wine Specialist & Beyond Inc. | Livestream: The Passion Box | Band: MusiKasal Singers | Photobooth: Photoman | Crew Meals: The Food Station | Cocina De Maceda