It's safe to say that the average bride has about a thousand things running through her head at all times on her wedding day. Following that logic, it seems likely that brides who also happen to be moms are juggling approximately a million separate thoughts at all times on the day they say their vows. Add nursing a little one into the mix and... well, you get the idea. It's a lot to deal with. But some women, such as celeb hairstylist Nakia Rachon, do the breastfeeding bride thing with absolute grace and style — and the pics are a thing of unparalleled beauty.
It shouldn't come as much of a surprise that Rachon managed to fulfill the many (sometimes conflicting) responsibilities of a bride on her wedding day while taking frequent breaks to nurse (in full hair and makeup, not to mention a wedding gown). As a woman at the top of her game — she's responsible for some of Beyoncé's most iconic looks, like her braids on the cover of Vogue — Rachon is a pro at keeping cool under pressure. Plus, to Rachon, breastfeeding is a meaningful part of motherhood, not a chore to be swept aside on a special occasion.
"I have a very busy career and me deciding to nurse my children longer not only helps us bond, but it allows me to protect them from sickness, let them feel safe and comforted when I am home with them," Rachon tells Romper.
"It’s our special time and I wouldn't have changed it for anything."
So when the day of Rachon's wedding to Da’Ron Collins arrived on October 27, 2017, the mom-of-two (8-year-old son Payton and 2-year-old daughter Zoë Moon) made sure that the day's activities (as well as her dress) accommodated Zoë's nursing schedule. Or she tried to, at least.
"The day started super early, hair and makeup came at 7 a.m. to make sure we would have ample time," Rachon remembers.
"But of course that’s the day my daughter decided she wanted to get up earlier than usual as well and nurse all morning."
While her dress weighed a whopping 10 pounds, Rachon says it was easy to nurse in — which turned out to be a very good thing.
"I remember trying to nurse my daughter all day so that when it came time for the ceremony she would be good," she says.
"Boy was I wrong. I almost had to walk down the aisle with her nursing. Luckily my aunt came as I started my stride! I gratefully made it down and through the ceremony without nursing."
Hey, when you really think about it, the ceremony is the only part of the wedding where nursing would really be inconvenient. With her arms free, the bride and her groom were free to focus on each other. "My husband and I met at a college party in Sacramento," Rachon says of their beginnings as a couple.
"I’ll never forget he randomly asked me what my favorite color was. He had the most beautiful eyes and smile... We actually got married on our 10 year anniversary of being together."
A "very intimate" affair in La Verne, California, at Sierra La Verne Country Club, Rachon says they kept the wedding "super small" because they "really wanted to highlight our love and come together with our closest family and friends. It was one of the best days of my life."
Ironically, those unexpected little hiccups (many of them involving breastfeeding, of course) are partly what brought Rachon right into the moment.
"I really let go and allowed myself to be present and soak each minute in," she says. "Our families made it perfect... being a mother is such a gift!"
Even on your wedding day.