Many of us have watched a love one suffer through a terminal illness. More than anything, we long to ease their pain and make their time with us as comfortable and as memorable as we can.
There are also those who are wishing to marry their special partner in life, but often the idea of planning a wedding seems too much to add to an already trying time.
This is where the Wedding Wishing Well Foundation steps in. Launched in 2012, the Foundation focuses on organising and funding weddings for terminally ill people.
Founder and celebrant Naomi Thomas helps people with terminal illness get married for free. “I’ve been a wedding planner for about 15 years now, I just love organising them,” she says. “I want to be able to give as many people the opportunity to get married, that are in this situation, as possible because they just totally deserve to have something really good happen to them.”
Emma was a bride who lost her husband Jamie to cancer. She says on their wedding day, Jamie just shone “He came out, he was smiling all day. He was walking about and he even forgot to ask for his pain relief,” Emma recalled.
Emma says that the day has given her and her family happy memories to remember Jamie by. “I think it saved me in a way, because I brought my husband home to pass away. I could have had the worst flashbacks and I still do, but when they come I can just hone in on my wedding day and remember my husband again.”
Naomi has her own battle to fight. In 2009 she was diagnosed with terminal cancer. “Being given that diagnosis it was like an out of body experience,” she said. “You don’t really know how you’re going to deal with it until you are there.”
Naomi’s focus is on spending time with her son Devon and husband Graham and continues to plan weddings for others. “Life doesn’t just end when you get an illness, it can be fulfilled in so many other ways. I just want to keep helping as many people as we can.”
You can find out more about The Wedding Wishing Well and how you might get involved by visiting their website here