After six years of struggle, Charlotte gets her dream day
WALKING down the aisle, Charlotte Arnold desperately tried to hold back the tears.
Her wedding day had been a long and difficult six years coming.
Not only did she feel happy to be finally married to the love of her life Simon, but she felt lucky to be alive.
After suffering a miscarriage, a heart attack and then seeing her son Samuel go through heart surgery, this was a big day for their family.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Wednesday, May 22 2013
The 40-year-old, of Mickleover, said: "It has taken us a long time to get to this point because of all the difficulties, what with Samuel at first with his heart surgery then me and my heart attack.
"I'm just really happy that we have made it."
In April 2006 Mrs Arnold, née Gray, suffered a miscarriage and needed a blood transfusion.
One year later, she gave birth to their son Samuel who was born with a congenital heart defect.
Just eight weeks old he underwent a blood transfusion after developing bronchiolitis – an illness caused by an infection which affects the airways.
And he required a second transfusion five months later following open-heart surgery.
Three years later, in June 2010, Mrs Arnold had a second transfusion after collapsing and suffering a heart attack while picking up her son from nursery.
Her partner Simon, 38, proposed to her six years ago but their wedding has been put on hold.
"It feels good to finally be Mrs Arnold," she said.
"It has been a big build-up. The day went by in a bit of a blur, but I tried to make time to enjoy it."
Mrs Arnold has backed the Derby Telegraph's Save a Life campaign, which aims to find 500 new blood donors across Derbyshire.
The couple, of Southgate Close, Mickleover, married on Saturday at Derby Register Office, followed by a meal at Le Bistrot Pierre, in Friar Gate.
The couple then had a party at Derby Rugby Club with more than 100 guests, all dressed in costumes from different musicals.
Mrs Arnold said: "I'm a big fan of the Wizard of Oz. I was Dorothy and Simon was the scarecrow.
"I even wore red ruby slippers. I've always wanted to dress up as Dorothy ever since I was a little girl.
"We had a tin-man and lion man, and we even had people dressing up as the Wicked Witch of the West, Willy Wonka and Mary Poppins.
"As I turned 40 at the beginning of the month, we decided the party would be for my birthday and the wedding.
"It was our opportunity to relax and let our hair down as Mr and Mrs Arnold. Lots of dreams came true that day."
Mrs Arnold said the day was very "emotional".
"I had to try to hold it together in the ceremony," she said.
"I was determined I did not want to cry because I knew I would not be able to stop.
"Samuel was a big part of the wedding. It was very important to us that he was there. We want to thank all of our friends and family for their help, support and generosity."
There is a blood donor session tomorrow at Pride Park Stadium from 2.15pm to 3.30pm and then at 4.30pm and 7.30pm. For more information call 0300 123 2323.