Picture Perfect: A Veil Made with Love

OK. This one was a doozy to write, so bear with me.

So my veil. Originally, I was 100% in the anti-veil camp. I felt that they looked too formal for the feel of our wedding, and I wanted a fun headband or hair clip instead. Now you’re up to speed.

Friday before Mother’s Day 2013. I was on my regular Skype date with my mom (to remind you, I live in North Carolina and my parents live in Pennsylvania), and after a brief chit chat about what was going on with the wedding plans, she said something to me I’ll never forget, and I had to watch her face while she said it:

“I have breast cancer.”

I cried, she cried, my dad in the other room probably cried but didn’t show it.

My mom is amazingly awesome and tackles obstacles head on. This was no exception—a month later, she was undergoing a double mastectomy, which she and my dad opted for to minimize the chances of recurrence. Unfortunately, when they dissected her armpit lymph nodes, she tested positive, so they had to remove all of them—putting her at risk to develop lymphedema. Obstacle number two.

Obstacle number three came when they said their initial biopsy reports were wrong and these were much more aggressive tumors than they originally thought, and she would need chemotherapy for six months. Her only concern was if it could wait until after the wedding so she could have hair in photographs.

Right after her initial diagnosis, she mentioned to me that she needed a project to keep her busy, and did I want her to make my veil? How do you say no to that, hive? The more I thought about it, the more I liked the idea of the veil for two big reasons: a) when else in your life do you get to wear a veil? and b) if it kept my mom busy AND provided me with a memorable keepsake I was all for it.

During the four months these events took place, my mom was painstakingly hand sewing lace to the edges of a piece of tulle. Luckily, I was able to be measured one weekend when I was visiting for BM Hamster’s wedding.

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Fast forward to wedding day—when it came time to put the veil on, it was definitely more emotional than I had bargained for.

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I only wore this for the ceremony and photos, but I loved it. I know it meant a lot to my mom, and it sure meant a lot to me. I’m going to keep it safe and hopefully it will keep well so my (way in the future) daughter may have a chance at wearing it at her wedding.

Did you have any special projects like this?

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Previously on Picture Perfect

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Mrs. Camera

Location:
Charlotte, NC/Charleston, SC
Wedding Date:
September 2013
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  1. Member
    airplane 395 posts, Helper bee @ 7:15 am

    So sweet. The veil is perfect, and your mom looks beautiful on your wedding day.

  2. Member
    mswaterfall 1403 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:17 am

    So, I totally cried at that. Your mom is such a strong woman, and I wish her all the best on her road to recovery! What an a beautiful memento to wear on your wedding day and possibly keep for future children! As someone who got very sick before the wedding, I totally understand the need for projects to keep you busy. Big hugs to both of you.

  3. Member
    jetsetter 535 posts, Busy bee @ 7:26 am

    Wow, Cam – what a touching story and of course, something you and your mom will never forget!

    I wish her all the best – she sounds like a really tough cookie! Go Mama Cam!!

  4. Member
    msbicycle 718 posts, Busy bee @ 7:40 am

    Thank you for sharing this with us! Your mom seems like a strong woman and I am sure she is proud of who you have become. Best wishes for her further treatment and recovery.

  5. Guest Icon Guest
    estella, Guest @ 7:41 am

    Oh wow, what a special gift. Best wishes to your mom!

  6. Member
    seabeeny 68 posts, Worker bee @ 7:45 am

    What a beautiful post, and veil! Best wishes to your mom.

  7. Member
    rucksack 518 posts, Busy bee @ 7:51 am

    Oh the tears. What a beautiful story and a beautiful veil! Wishing you and your awesome Mama all the luck and hope and hugs in the world.

  8. Member
    missgoldfish 454 posts, Helper bee @ 9:41 am

    Such an amazing story! Wishing your mom all the best!

  9. Member
    pyramid 98 posts, Worker bee @ 9:50 am

    Yes, tearing up here at my desk. This is so sweet that your mom wanted to make it, and it looks like it turned out very well. Best wishes, internet hugs, and prayers for everything that y’all are going through.

  10. Member
    sophieb3 790 posts, Busy bee @ 10:23 am

    What an amazing gift to receive from your mother. I hope she is doing well.

  11. Member
    mspalmtree 1122 posts, Bumble bee @ 11:50 am

    Oh, Mrs. Camera. What a special and meaningful post this is. I love that you’re keeping it and that it can become something that is passed down to future Cameras. Sending you and Mama Cam so much love. <3

  12. Member
    mstreasure 1655 posts, Bumble bee @ 12:20 pm

    Your veil looks beautiful, and I hope your mom is doing well.

  13. Member
    mspony 9265 posts, Buzzing Beekeeper @ 1:11 pm

    What a wonderful story behind such a beautiful veil! Best wishes for a speedy recovery for Mama Camera.

  14. Member
    panda 1359 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:32 pm

    wow, what a touching story. sending big hugs and bests wishes to you and your mother

  15. Member
    triciag 438 posts, Helper bee @ 7:14 am

    Beautiful and so much emotion tied up in that veil. Best wishes for your mom.

  16. Member
    msjackrabbit 1080 posts, Bumble bee @ 7:52 am

    OMG this gave me goosebumps. What a wonderful thing for her to do for you.
    All my love to Mummy Camera xx

  17. Member
    blonde17jess 1290 posts, Bumble bee @ 9:17 am

    Whewwwwwww, trying not to lose it at work. That’s a beautiful story and way for your mom to keep busy and be involved in the wedding preparations. You both (or all three, if you count the veil) look gorgeous!

  18. Member
    daniellekira 573 posts, Busy bee @ 11:08 am

    Wow, I am trying so hard not to cry. I love your veil and hope you have a daughter to pass it onto. Your mom is amazing for doing it all. I hope she recovers fast.

  19. Member
    Mrs. Rubber Stamps 821 posts, Busy bee @ 4:38 pm

    Oh my, cue the tears! What an absolutely beautiful gift for your Mom to make you. Best wishes to her. I hope she makes a full recovery. Big hugs!

  20. Member
    sparklebee2014 128 posts, Blushing bee @ 1:50 pm

    Tearing up at my desk!

    Wow, that’s so special for you and your mama. Your veil is really beautiful, too!

    Sending huge hugs and best wishes to you and Mama Camera!

  21. Member
    msmongoose 264 posts, Helper bee @ 2:55 pm

    This is such a beautiful and emotional story. Thank you for sharing with us and I’m so happy your mom got to create something so lovely for you. Wishing her a speedy recovery!!

  22. Member
    mscamera 300 posts, Helper bee @ 3:03 pm

    wow, thank you everyone!! Mama Camera is doing great – she lost her hair, but has a pretty sassy little wig and a fantastic attitude :) She’s just about halfway done with chemo and then she’ll be home free!! Thank you all for all of your support, it means a lot.

  23. Member
    texasaggiemom 595 posts, Busy bee @ 6:53 pm

    Thanks for the update on your mom – I was just about to ask you to keep us posted, as I know many of us will be keeping your mother in our prayers. Sounds like she’s doing a great job of fighting it, and I’m so glad she was able to enjoy your wedding and see you in that gorgeous veil. Hugs from Texas!

  24. Guest Icon Guest
    Babeba, Guest @ 5:52 pm

    You should contact your local museum for advice on how to preserve your veil to make sure that it keeps forever! I know you say that hopefully it will keep well, but talking to a conservator will definitely get you some tips on how to store it so ‘hopefully’ is more of a certainty.

    I’m not an expert on textiles, but at a minimum I would say invest in a hollinger box and some acid-free tissue to store it in. Make sure that the tissue is supporting the whole veil and that it’s touching itself as little as possible. Store it in whatever part of your house is the coolest/most temperature consistent, away from drafts and the basement floor (in case of flooding). Mark the box with the contents so you don’t have to open it to see what’s inside and it doesn’t get lost/forgotten.

    I would also write down the story of your veil on acid-free paper with either pencil or India ink (pigma micron pens are good for this) and put it in the box, so that of something happens to YOU before any future daughter of yours has a chance to see it, she might still know how special a time this was for you and your Mom. And do it now, while all the details are fresh and emotional and so it actually gets done! Also, when you and your husband have kids, you should put details about this and any other important family stuff you want them to eventually have into your will so they know to look for it if/when something were to happen to you.

  25. Guest Icon Guest
    chris, Guest @ 10:53 am

    Oh @Mrs Camera and Momma Camera– what a beautiful story. If I had a daughter I would want her to be just like you! Momma, prayers for total and permanent recovery :) and the veil ain’t bad either ;)

  26. Member
    gondola 1046 posts, Bumble bee @ 4:14 am

    Your mother is so amazing. What a beautiful story!

  27. Member
    roadtrip 803 posts, Busy bee @ 12:23 pm

    I hope your Mom is doing well with her treatments. Best wishes to her for a speedy recovery and no recurrence!

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