Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Coffee with Carlene: Wedding Planning

Wedding Planning
I promised this series a couple months ago and I admit I've been sitting on it. Actually, anything to do with our wedding went into the procrastinate this pile, at least it did until I realized we're less than a month out and I sort of have to stop procrastinating. It didn't start that way, once I realized our families wanted us to have a big celebration and were willing to help us I started to get excited. I suddenly pictured the pretty dress, the big bouquet, the cake, the fun. I researched weddings, I saved DIY ideas, I studied other weddings planned in an equally short period of time, I thought "I've got this."  I bought a wedding planning budget book (actually super helpful and easy to use), we booked a venue, we narrowed down our guest list, and we picked out vendors and set meeting dates.

Photo by from Pexels
We would've been happy, thrilled really, with eloping, but we recognize that people love us and want to celebrate us, for that we're grateful. Wedding planning though quickly became stressful, expensive, and sometimes it felt a lot like people wanted what they wanted and they cared very little about what we actually wanted. I could've made the first post about the good parts, but I really wanted to be honest with all of you first. I was, and still am, knee deep in a never ending pile of work and of course having a short 5 month engagement during Spring means planning while also attending a lot of events and trying to keep our schedule that we had planned previous to our engagement. I went from feeling excited, setting meetings, and pinning daily to feeling annoyed at friends for posting about how fun the process was for them, I deleted every single email from The Knot, and I started seeking out every little issue to cite it as a reason the wedding wouldn't be perfect. Perfection is silly by the way, it took me the last few months to be able to say I really don't expect a perfect wedding, I just wasn't happy and was flinging senseless words out to cover up the feelings I was dealing with inside. I was feeling inadequate, I was comparing what we were doing (what I actually wanted) against what others had done, I was feeling unsupported (turns out men aren't into the fluff of weddings), and I was feeling alone. There are SO MANY articles out there about wedding stress, but when you're on all the websites those aren't the stories pinned to the top.

I am very fortunate to have family that soldiered on while I stepped back to really think about what we, what I, wanted. They didn't badger me with questions about what was next or how they could help, though my mom checked in with me and put up with several "I don't cares," she kept doing what she knew needed to be done to get us to the finish line. She also offered to let us cancel everything, she truly just wanted to see us happy and married and wanted to see me less stressed about it all. My dad and stepmom kept making signs and games and looking for things to give our venue the mix of rustic campy and floral feeling that we were looking. It took a lot of tears, confessions to friends about my feelings, and quite a bit of self reflection to get to where we are today. I had to recognize that maybe the planning process wouldn't be this fluffy, dreamy sequence like in a movie, but that it would pay off. We would be married, which is our ultimate goal, and we would get to have our family and closest friends there to dance with, eat cake with, and laugh with.
Photo by from Pexels

We are indeed having a wedding, one I am finally excited for, one that still sort of stresses me out, but that I am looking forward to having and sharing with our loved ones. The invites are out, most of the RSVP's have been returned, and we're down to less than 30 days. I don't expect perfect from it, it sure as heck was a bit more expensive than we expected, but it is ours and it will be a happy, memorable day even if the cake crashes to the floor, a guest gets too drunk, or it decides to pour rain on our very outdoor ceremony in the middle of a mountain. In the last month I've stopped shying from wedding talk, I've spent more one on one time with my future husband without distractions, and I've found myself finally sounding like the brides I was envious of. I love my dress, I can't wait to share my day with my friends, I had a perfect wedding shower, I have the best bachelorette photos, I am obsessed with our engagement shoot pictures, and most of all I cannot wait to finally say I do to K and his silly last name. 

Up Next: Our story and sharing our engagement photos.

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