I got married and went on a honeymoon (and took photos, which you can see here)

Our wedding

They never tell you how nerve-racking those hours before the wedding can be when you’re the groom.

But there I was, with a million thoughts running through my head. What could I prevent from going wrong the rest of the day so the wedding would be perfect? Was I going to cry when the ceremony began? Was Cat going to cry?

And when would the damn air conditioning cool off the venue? I was sweating in a thick tuxedo, and the wedding was still hours away.

I remember saying aloud, just before the ceremony, how funny it was that the four hours before the wedding felt like four days, but the next four hours would be a blur. Indeed, it was, and it’s amazing how quickly the most important night of your life whizzes by.

But it was a special night, full of laughter, hugs and family. That’s what every wedding should be. Our wedding was beautiful and personal, which was a sentiment echoed by many guests following the event.

That was no accident – we picked an officiant who we knew would do the best job marrying us. It was one of my college professors, Dr. Mark Zeigler, who would announce us as husband and wife, but not before reading numerous testimonials he’d collected from friends and family. He also had us write personal vows that were perfect when recited.

(Also read: A U.S. Soccer fan shares his experience in Brazil)

After a few hours of dancing and a good night’s sleep, we jetted off to Jamaica for six days in Montego Bay.

If you have the means to do so, an all-inclusive resort is definitely the way to go for the honeymoon. After spending weeks relaying messages about wedding plans from our parents to the other spouse and back, while trying to remember to do everything on our to-do list before the wedding, we were ready to hit the beach and have no worries for a week.

That’s exactly what we got from Sandals Montego Bay – no worries about paying for food or drinks, and no itinerary to keep up with for days on end. It was absolutely perfect.

We had a great time interacting with other newlyweds, but there was enough coastline to head down the beach and get chairs in a remote area, away from the crowds. At times, it felt like one of those Corona commercials with the couples lying alone on a beautiful beach in Paradise.

The food was spectacular, and if I had one complaint, it was that there weren’t enough places on the resort to cool off. The only air-conditioned places on the resort were the rooms, bathrooms and one of the six restaurants.

We should have been enjoying the island atmosphere, I know, but at times, my thick Irish blood needed cooling, and we basically had to go back to the room if we wanted to briefly get out of the sun.

But if the biggest complaint about a wedding week is that we were sweating a little too much, that’s all we can ask from our first seven days of marriage.

Some photos from our wedding weekend and honeymoon are below. For best viewing, click on the first photo and scroll through the rest using your arrow keys.

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