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The Non-Wedding Photoshoot

This is a story we should all read, because it shows you that even in the face of the worst-case scenario, one can still smile, fight the tears and prevail. It is represented in this amazing photo series by photographer Elizabeth Hoard


This is the story of Shelby Swink, who has been in a relationship since 2011 with a man she thought she was going to marry and live with ever-after. The got engaged and were set to get married last month. 
ruined wedding photos

However, less than a week before the big day, her fiancé announced to her that he no longer loves her, and called off the wedding. 
ruined wedding photos

“Bam. My dreams of marrying and having kids with what I thought was the man I would spend the rest of my life with vanished,” said a devastated Shelby.  “November was supposed to be a fun and happy day surrounded by friends and family who loved me.  I decided that I would not let my ex-fiancé’s mistake of letting me go take that away from me.” 
ruined wedding photos

She and the wedding photographer instead decided to have a 'trash the dress' photoshoot on the very day of the wedding that never happened. Replacing sadness with fun.
ruined wedding photos

“The moment the paint hit my dress… I was free. All the disappointment, all the hurt… I just felt it leave me”, said Shelby. 
ruined wedding photos

ruined wedding photos

“My bridesmaids supported the idea 100% and even joined me in their own dresses.” 
ruined wedding photos

Her parents didn't give up the oppurtunity to be part of the fun. 
ruined wedding photos

Since her mother was the one who paid for her dress, Shelby was surprised at how supportive her parents were, both wanting to be there for her. 
ruined wedding photos

ruined wedding photos

ruined wedding photos

ruined wedding photos

After the colorful photoshoot, Shelby's dress was displayed for all to see at the Barefoot Bride in Memphis. While it is on display, part of all money spent on dresses will go to a local nonprofit. 
ruined wedding photos

“Always remember to remain true to yourself and believe in your own strength and you can overcome anything life throws at you”, said Shelby when asked what she learned from this experience. 
ruined wedding photos

And if you had something to say to your ex-fiancé? “Thank you for sparing me greater pain and loss down the road. Thank you for pushing me to realize my own strength…” 
ruined wedding photos

“…Thank you for teaching me that no one can take away my happiness. Thank you for letting me go so I can one day experience true reciprocated love. THANK YOU!” 
ruined wedding photos

ruined wedding photos

ruined wedding photos
 

There's even a non-wedding video!

H/T:  Offbeatbride

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