I got a wedding undergraduate post in my inbox last week that was so ‘Exactly’ (if I had an exactly button on my email) that I had to run it as is. Miranda hits on two things in this email that I think really, really need saying. The first is the bridal bullsh*t part. She talks about the moments in wedding planning where people close to you do sh*tty hurtful things (that they seem to not see as sh*tty and hurtful, which only makes it worse), and you go to sleep crying your eyes out. Sometimes when we (me and all the wedding grads and commenters) try to hammer home the message that it will be ok in the end (and it will) we loose track of the message that it’s totally normal when these horrible parts of planning happen, and that you’re not alone. As I said in my own wedding graduate post, “It’s ok to cry.” And it really really is.
But Miranda really hits on more than that here. She gives us such an important reminder of why we do this: because life is short, and when you find a person, you want to celebrate that. And with that, I give you Miranda (who will obviously be coming back as a wedding graduate, cough, cough, cough):
This morning I got into a car accident on my way to work – not only on time, but early for once! – and my entire day got warped. Yesterday two close friends, both in our bridal brigade, declared, loudly and angrily, that they would not be participating in our wedding in the ways we had hoped they would. One felt we were asking too much, and, for her mental health, has opted out of just about everything. The other felt that we were asking too much by having not only an engagement party but also a bridal shower and a bachelorette party as well. These are truly, honestly conversations that I never thought I would have around what I have been thinking of as my quiet, sane, community-based wedding celebration with my woman.
I woke up this morning with my head reeling from the heaviness of these conversations, and my eyes still puffy from all the crying I’d done the night before. I got up and functioned and got out the door on time and promptly (exactly 89 feet later, according to Google Maps) smashed my car with another car.
I know you say all the time on your website, in your words and in other people’s words, that it’s your person that matters, that you’ll feel the love and support on your wedding day, and lots of bridal bullshit happens before or even during and that is not the part that matters. But what occurred to me even bigger than that, is that sometimes the wedding doesn’t matter either.
That is, a lot of the time the wedding does matter, and it matters a lot. Last night, the biggest things on my list were my fiancee’s two best friends and how they weren’t coming through for me and how even worse, I feel like they’re not coming through for her, and how could they do this for our wedding? Last night I went to bed puffy and ugly-faced because of all of that, sort of nodding as my future-spouse told me we would work it out.
And as I sat there next to pieces of my car this morning waiting for the three police cars to show up (what can I say, we live in a quiet town), Dulcea came running out of the house with a camera, a notepad, and her phone. She called in sick to work for me, she took pictures of all the broken stuff, she helped take down the necessary information, and she sat with me until I stopped shaking. After that, she scrapped the rest of her day’s plans and came with me to the garage to get the car looked at, and to the insurance agency to find out how this whole thing works, and even offered to go with me to borrow my parents’ car a few towns over.
The point of all this is to say that the wedding is only the biggest thing for so long; for us, it will only be the biggest thing for another 28 days. It’s all these other things that remind me why I want to be with her, marriage or no – and legal or no, depending on the state – and, as you have said so many times, that is the important part.
I wanted to write to you about this because this is the first time that I got it in all this wedding madness. Practical, sane wedding-planner me has been saying all along, “It’s not about the wedding, it’s about the marriage,” but for a little bit there, even if it was just for one night, I got sucked into the wedding. And luckily, my wonderful Dulcea was there to be ready for the marriage part of it.
Picture: Just so you know who we are – I’m the one in blue