It goes without saying that, as a bride, you likely have a plan (or at least a clear vision) in place regarding most of your wedding day details. Making your ideas come to life may be challenging for many reasons leaving you wishing for sole responsibility over every component. Unfortunately, that is an impossibility as outside help, whether from friends and family or hired professionals, is required. However, every decision including the amount of assistance you want or need and from whom it comes is yours to make.
Remember that the period leading up to your special day is not just exciting for you but for those close to you as well. Many will offer their time, advice and skills to ease your burden and lower your stress level. While usually successful, occasionally their good intentions lead to uncomfortable situations and hurt feelings.
One objective of your wedding is for your guests to enjoy themselves which includes being able to take in everything going on around them. If someone offers to provide their services on the day of for something other than what you want, kindly pointing out some of the special things they would miss is a great way to decline the offer while avoiding being offensive.
Unsolicited offers will not just come for your ceremony and reception but may arise throughout the planning process too. Fortunately, those are easier to handle. During this time, you can include the individual(s) in different yet equally meaningful ways making it seem as if you are not being dismissive. For example, if your mom is determined for you to wear her veil and your heart is set on a birdcage, invite her to help you choose just the right one and offer to sew a piece of the veil inside your gown or to use it as a wrap around your bouquet.
All intentions are good when those who love you offer a lending hand as difficult as that may periodically be to keep in mind. However, it is the one day that all attention is on you and your future husband. Therefore, while always doing so kindly and with consideration, you should not feel guilty for ensuring that what you envisioned is exactly what materializes.
Many couples don’t have a church they regularly attend but feel it is important to hold their ceremony in one. If you are not using or don’t have a pastor you know, get to know the one who will marry you. It is not uncommon for pastors to require at least a few sessions of premarital counseling so as to provide some insight into a variety of things that may not have ever crossed your mind in terms of your relationship and the life changes that come along with being married. Often, family and friends provide support, encouragement and give advice but have a somewhat biased perspective due to their affinity for the two of you. Someone outside of your life and circle can be very helpful and most often, the fees for the counseling are included in the amount charged to perform the ceremony.
One thing your friends and family usually feel much more at ease commenting on is the length of your relationship prior to your engagement or marriage. Sometimes, because your parents got married after two years or your best friend was engaged after six months, the expectations for you are the same. It is imperative to remember that every relationship is different from any other and what is right for you is just that, regardless of what someone else felt was appropriate for them. Marriages can be successful after having only known one another for a few weeks just as much so as after dating for ten years. It is very easy to question yourself and the decisions you and your fiancé make based on what those close to you say. You probably also feel much more inclined to take their advice, whether right or wrong, and dismiss what it is you feel in your heart, especially coming from those who have already made the commitment to their partner.
Pastors are people who have experience with all sorts of couples and have heard all sorts of difficulties and trepidations. They go into every ceremony with both the knowledge that it is different from any other and the assurance of having contributed to making you as prepared for your future and as successful as it can be. Advice and ideas should be welcomed from any source but pastoral counseling comes from a place that is unbiased and born out of wisdom. Therefore, if you know your minister or not, be open to taking time to speak to him/her honestly and openly prior to committing yourselves to one another. After all, it would be uncomfortable having someone you have never met and doesn’t know you joining you and your husband on one of the most important days of your life.
When couples get married, it is very easy to get caught up in the small details and find yourself losing sight of the bigger picture. It is typical that most brides feel overwhelmed by the number of choices for everything from dresses to cakes and venues and change their minds on a weekly basis. Here are some pointers on how to stay grounded and ensure that you have a wedding that you will look back on and remember as the one you always dreamed of.
Remember the saying “a picture is worth a thousand words.” Your wedding day will be captured in countless photos and you don’t want to look back on them and regret the decisions you made. It’s easy to choose something because it is in style now, is trendy or seems like the right thing to do. However, think about what you like and stick to it. Do what makes you happy and what makes you feel good. After all, it is YOUR day.
Don’t style your wedding after someone else’s. It isn’t a competition, but instead, a very personal experience. A lot of brides attend the weddings of their friends and then feel obligated (often subconsciously) to outdo one another. Everyone has a different budget, unique tastes and each experience should be different, personal and reflective of the relationship of the couple.
It is always nice to listen to what other people have to say in reference to your dress, the food, cake, etc. Maybe you love chocolate but everyone in your family is allergic so you consider getting a vanilla cake (which you hate). Taking advice from friends, family, bridal magazines, etc. is not a bad idea but going with your instincts will guarantee that you will achieve the results you want and won’t have any regrets.
This is your day and it is meant to be for you and your future husband. At the end of the day, you will be starting your new life together and that is all that matters. Everything else is irrelevant.