This past summer Shayne and I moved to Brooklyn, hoping for a new start and new adventures. We’d just settled into our third-floor walk-up apartment in Brooklyn when we both came down with a bad flu. A month later, Shayne’s symptoms still hadn’t gone away, so we headed to the emergency roomassuming pneumonia. We found out that night that he had stage IV lymphoma.

We’d talked about getting married for a while, so we decided to not wait. With less than a week’s notice, friends new and old, and some family assembled in the “Zen Room” at Beth Israel Hospital to witness Shayne and I saying our “I do’s.” In lieu of wedding rings, we decided to get matching Conversegrey with pink shoelacesbut at the last minute, I decided to not abandon tradition and bought simple silver rings at a closet-sized jewelry store across the street. We took turns getting ready in Shayne’s hospital room.

We both decided to take new last names, a mash-up of both of our old last names: O’Neill and Meek turned into Miel, which also just so happens to mean “honey” in both French and Spanish.

Thanks to an aggressive chemotherapy schedule and the world-class doctors at UNC, Shayne’s health is improving and he is expected to make a full recovery, so next September we’re planning on having a party to celebrate health, family and friends, which in some circles people call a wedding.

Rebekah and Shayne