There seems to be a growing trend of couples that opt for the small, quick, DIY, money-saving wedding. Traditions have been thrown to the wayside, parents aren’t paying for elaborate weddings like they did in the past.
I’ll admit, I didn’t want a big wedding. It’s costly, it’s stressful. My mother died many moons ago, but I still never got over the thought of her not being at my wedding, or getting to know my husband – I didn’t have a choice in this matter. My Father would not be walking me down the aisle, an extremely difficult decision that was my choice- I think. For these reasons mostly, I never imagined having a big wedding.
In the end, my husband and I found a way to pay for the wedding ourselves. It was big, beautiful, and elaborate, as well as unconventional, imperfect, and yes, stressful.
I ripped my million dollar wedding dress, my sister expectedly got drunk, gave an unplanned speech. I didn’t get nearly the amount of time I wanted to spend with everyone- including my new husband. An old family friend passed out at dinner and had to be taken out by ambulance. We didn’t even eat our dinner. My face broke out so bad, I felt like a fourteen year old. The wedding is over and I am still stressing out wondering if everyone had a good time!?
But here is what I learned at the cost of a small fortune.
– I don’t have a ton of friends, but the handful that I do have are amazing, thoughtful, fun – and love the heck out of me! I don’t think I ever give them enough credit for that.
– My wedding brought family out that I haven’t seen in years. Even if worst case scenario they only came out for the free alcohol and food, it was really nice to see them, and get to know them all over again, especially in an environment that wasn’t a funeral home.
– The family I inherited from my husband is kind, nonjudgmental, not much for dancing but still social, reaching out to my family to get to know them better.
– Some people that shouldn’t, will inevitably fail you – and that will surprise you and sting, but then some people that shouldn’t be there for you, will be there to pick up the pieces; and that will equally surprise you.
– No ones wedding is “perfect”. Just like marriages and families aren’t either. It’s the way things are. Suck it up butter cup.
– We included immediate family members’ children (nieces and nephews). It was such a delight to see them tearing up the dance floor. It makes me so happy to know that they will have the memory of our wedding with them as they grow up and hopefully plan their own big wedding.
I’ve been reflecting on my wedding ever since the day (I’m celebrating my 2 week anniversary tonight!). Here’s the real lesson learned. Weddings aren’t for you and your spouse. As much as you like to think it is your BIG DAY, and the spotlight is on the two of you, it isn’t about you at all. It’s about the two families uniting, as clumsily as they might. It’s about your crazy sister getting hammered and telling you how she REALLY feels (before kissing my groom dead smack on the lips). It’s about seeing those old family members you haven’t seen in years. It’s about everyone getting together to celebrate love – whether it’s your new love or their old. It’s about everyone else.
That’s exactly why you SHOULD have the big wedding. Yes, it is expensive, and stressful. But it is also something you will look back on, every detail of it all – and hopefully be able to learn a few things from it, all while everyone else is enjoying the party!