My Wedding! It’s Ruined!

Wedding Program

My Wedding! It’s Ruined! Wow, how many times have we heard those words being said? Who has actually said those words? Raise your hand. Don’t be shy. Ah weddings. That’s the event every girl dreams about since they were old enough to pronounce the words, “Vera Wang.” The image of the perfect timeline of wedding events is cemented firmly into a young girl’s head. Cemented like the glue used to affix tulle to well…everything. We girls all know that it starts with the perfect proposal. Let’s go through the perfect proposal, shall we? It happens at the exotic spot or fancy restaurant. Man down on one knee with two karat, pear-shaped, G or H clarity, flawless diamond ring. The bonus is all of the friends and family nearby to have their faces rubbed in witness this blessed event. So if all of these things occur, it’s the perfect proposal, right? I must be weird because I actually cherish mine that humbly occurred in front of the Saint Louis Cathedral in Jackson Square, but I digress. So after the “Yes!” it is time to move onto the next step of telling family and friends, who are either really happy for you or they hate you, with phone calls, Facebook, and save-the-date cards. And what is the perfect date? Depends on whether you want to be a spring, summer, fall, or winter bride. You ask yourself the important questions of whether you are competing with holidays, milestone birthdays, or worse, another wedding. Because if you and Cousin Mitzy are walking down the aisle on the same day, your wedding will be ruined! Where will the ceremony and reception be held? A backyard? a church? a tropical destination? This is important to establish early because if any of these venues fall through, the wedding is ruined!

Wedding Coordinator or no? In other words, can you relinquish enough control to let someone else put everything together or do you want to do it all yourself? Flowers, cake (chocolate, vanilla, raspberry ganache? Three tiers? Four Tiers? Groom’s cake?), Food, Linens, Centerpieces, must all be perfect. If not, the wedding will be ruined! If the tulle is stuck in the wrong spot, the wedding will be ruined! Keep in mind that the careless selection of themes and colors will also bring about the ruination of your blessed event. I’m not kidding.

Where the wedding will be held depends on the how many guest you want to witness your event. Oh the guest list. Whoo! This has been the cause of many conflicts. One wrong guest and the wedding is ruined! If you have fighting relatives, who do you invite and who do you tell to keep their drama at the house? If your folks are divorced and have been remarried, how do you orchestrate that? And if this is marriage number two, how do you negotiate the attendance of the children with the ex? If the split was amicable, then problems are limited. Now if a big flat-screened television set and shade were thrown during the divorce, then getting your child to your happy day will take an Act of Congress (or the act of a good lawyer). What about that fresh uncle who grabs everything wearing a skirt? How about that aunt who prays for the words, “Open Bar”? What about that friend who lets you know that she will wear the same outfit she wore to your fiancée’s first wedding? Does she get an invite? Anyhow, once this list has been established, what’s the seating arrangement? Can’t sit feuding relatives next to one another. So figuring out who sits next to whom is as complicated as putting together a Survivor puzzle. Get it wrong, and the wedding is ruined!

Speaking of people, who are the groomsmen? Who are the bridesmaids? Who gets the coveted spots of Best Man and Maid of Honor? If the wrong selections are made, the wedding is ruined! I don’t know about men, but with women, the selection of bridesmaids is a complicated process. Who they will be has been established in the Kindergarten sandbox. The list evolves depending on circumstances. They can be removed if the person moves away, never to be heard from again or if there is a feud like stolen Barbies or boyfriends. The list grows as the bride grows up, where she is adding people from high school, college, and work. The wedding processional can be fifteen people long! Personally, I have witnessed a few occasions where bridesmaids selections have come back to bite the bride in the backside. It is important to select people who are truly happy for you and will support you. Also, while some there are some bridesmaids from you-know-where, sometimes, the brides have unrealistic expectations of their bridesmaids. You are friends for a reason and they should be treated as such. I absolutely loved my bridesmaids. Sure, they gave me what I needed, but in turn, I hope I was able to do the same for them.

So now that we’ve gotten the people all sorted out, what are they going to wear? Some brides get this notion in their heads that in order to have all the attention, their bridesmaids should be put into the ugliest dresses possible. Because if the bridesmaids look better than them, the wedding is ruined! This is crazy talk because the selection of dresses isn’t a reflection of how ugly the bridesmaids are, but of the bride’s poor taste. And insecurities. On the other end of the spectrum, there are brides who expect for their bridesmaids to get mani/pedis, hair (weave) done, facial, tanning, and diet. Yes some require diets. So basically, after dropping money for the dress, shoes, accessories, and travel, they need to empty their purses some more for the luxuries that they cannot afford on a regular basis, let alone a once (hopefully) in a lifetime event. Because in the bride’s mind, if their women walking down the aisle aren’t hooked all the way up – according to their specifications – the wedding is ruined!

Finally, most importantly, what are you, the bride going to look like when you walk down the aisle? Got to pick the perfect dress. Some brides have been known to cry when they find the dress. Personally, I didn’t. I was happy to find something that looked great (not really a ruffles and bows kind of girl), fit, and was good priced. Long veil or short veil? Tiara or simple clip? And what shoes? It’s all got to come together with the hair (a particular challenge for me), makeup (One of my bridesmaids hooked me up with that because bleech!), nails, and other grooming. Then brides are on that mission to find something old, new, borrowed, and blue. And if the bride isn’t perfect, like if groom wedding guests don’t cry and marvel over her beauty, the wedding is ruined!

So tell me, in recalling your own wedding, how many things have actually gone off without a hitch? Did you think your difficulties ruined the wedding? Do you look back on them fondly or are you still stewing over them years later? Were you stuck in your feelings about these mishaps to the point where you overlooked the spontaneous wonderful things that occurred? The things that your guest remember? Like I still cannot get the image of my 80-something-year-old grandmother getting her groove on at my sister’s wedding. That memory still makes me smile.

I have questions for those brides who believed that the wrong linens being used or the cake toppling over were truly devastating: Did your groom show up and say, “I do” with love in his eyes? Did everyone arrive safely? Return home safely? If so, then I personally believe that issues like people who show up without an RSVP can be laughed about later. With your groom. Oh remember him? I think that brings me to my second point of this post. People fall into the trap of wanting a wedding. Read back though this post about the process concerning what happens in a wedding. How many times did I mention, “the groom”? In what context was he mentioned? Did he play an important role in your event at all or was he just an accessory?

Brides need to remember two things: There would be no need for a wedding if he didn’t ask you to marry him in the first place. After all, the wedding lasts only one day. A marriage though, should last a lifetime. As hard as you work to put together the perfect wedding, you work even harder to maintain the perfect marriage. Even then, it does not stay perfect as committed people grow and change. Learning to live with someone else with their own thoughts, beliefs, desires, dreams, opinions, and feelings takes work. If you don’t do that, the marriage is ruined! Honestly, I believe that is more devastating than a perceived ruined wedding.

So if the reception didn’t go exactly how you pictured it a million times over in your head, but you are doing the first dance as husband and wife, then your wedding was not ruined. Most importantly, if you’re still dancing lovingly in each other’s arms ten, twenty, fifty years later, then you have had the perfect marriage. And that trumps a perfect wedding any day.

Be sure to check out my new novel, Destination Wedding Coming Soon!


6 responses to “My Wedding! It’s Ruined!

  1. I still stew at the few things that went wrong with mine. Not in an obssessive sort of way, but they cross my mind whenever a wedding is discussed. Main issue – wardrobe malfunctions – my dress wasn’t laced properly in the back. I couldn’t give clear directions on what should have been done, so as a result, the lacing looked sloppy and the privacy panel (as it was called by the dressmaker) kept popping up. This also caused my dress to slip down, which doesn’t bode well for an ample bosomed person. I also didn’t practice walking in the dress. Whenever I went for fittings, I just walked around the dressing room (just a few feet here and there). When I began my walk down that 100 ft aisle, my shoe got snagged in the voluminous slip, which almost caused me to trip. Luckily, my brother held me steady and I took tiny steps after that. At the reception, that slip was the first thing to go.

    Reception…hmmm…..there are still about 4 people whom I have NO IDEA who they were or how they got invited (I know they were guests of guests, but I don’t recall giving guests a one plus however many you want option). The place was beautifully decorated due to the Christmas season, but I really wish I had the money to pay for chair covers. No one seemed to care, but I did (and still do).

    This was a New Orleans wedding and every wedding in this city ends with a second line and ours was no exception. Problem is that we couldn’t afford to bring in a brass band and do it right. The house DJ did his part and we buck jumped like crazy. I’ll never forget my father-in-law doing the alligator (on the floor). And, of course, you, Kevin and Angie having NO IDEA what we were doing. “What do you do with the umbrella?” “I guess you freak it!” LOL


    • I really enjoyed your wedding, Monica. That was a lot of fun.You guys need to have another one so we can come back and do another second line LOL! I do remember your issue with your dress and that is a problem because you want it to be the last thing to worry about when walking down the aisle. Don’t you hate it when people crash? That happened to me too and my parents had to juggle seating and pay for extra food. That’s what people don’t get. Each person at the reception is being paid for.


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