Planning a wedding often feels like being amidst a dizzying, exciting, loud, colorful circus. It’s part balancing act and part lion tamer; I have to balance the interests and and desires of others with our own, I have to keep the roars of excitement of others at bay so that I may hear our own, often much quieter, voices. All of my time and energy is going into putting together a few hours of what is basically seen as entertainment. Every tiny aspect of wedding planning snowballs and I can’t help but think that a lot comes from expectations that have been created by the very industry.
I have been spending a lot of time on a very wedding-centric website so I can figure out how to organize a wedding without losing myself. We wanted something very small, a deeply meaningful ceremony followed by a short and nontraditional brunch gathering. Most of that has basically been thrown out of the window. It was supposed to be very small, but that turned out to be generally hurtful and impossible, so now we are aiming for small. It was supposed to be here, then it was there and now it is at a different place altogether. My dress was going to be something off the rack from Nordstrom (or maybe even Nordstrom Rack), as were there bridesmaids dresses, and the Groom and his groomsmen were going to wear suits. Now I am wearing a white gown (which was quite a find, so that kind of worked out), after what felt like endless discussions and changes the bridesmaids are wearing bridesmaids dresses (which I hope are well within budget), and the Groom and his groomsmen are wearing tuxes because it was quite difficult to coordinate. Open bar or no bar, maybe a limited bar with specialty drinks, themes, floral arrangements, bouquets, programs, vows, bands, music, growing guest list, invitations, dietary restrictions, it is all exhausting and expensive and it all feels increasingly meaningless, who is it all for?
As I have undoubtedly mentioned before I never thought I would get married. It wasn’t something I realistically considered and eagerly planned for. I don’t say this to sound cool, or detached, or evolved, or whatever. I say this as a reflection of my current relationship. I never wanted to get married (for the sake of a wedding or to just be married or whatever), but I unquestionably want to marry Greg. I love him, I love us, I don’t need to think twice about interweaving my life with his forever, I am actually eager to experience all of the messy, happy, complicated bits. So naturally, I think, that’s what our wedding should be. We should be making those vows before G-d, our immediate family, our closest of friends, and celebrating the moment however we see fit; no expectations, no meaningless traditions, no pretense, just unconstrained love. I can only hope that there are no hurt feelings, no disappointment, no bitterness as a result of following our hearts.