A Wedding Update Seems Like A Good Idea

I know wedding updates should be saved for Wednesdays because then I could title this Wedding Wednesday and everything would be cutesy and I could feign coordination and organization and FORETHOUGHT and stuff, but that is really not how I am rolling with wedding planning so far. I thought maybe we could just have some real talk instead.

I am being a real pill about planning this wedding. I’m focusing on how stressful everything is, how expensive it is, how many tedious freaking things I have to make decisions on that I DON’T EVEN CARE ABOUT. How everyone feels invited to share their opinions on how things should or shouldn’t be, while simultaneously saying “But do it for yourself! This is YOUR wedding.”

All of it has been…a lot, and I’m going to be very honest and say I haven’t enjoyed it too much yet. I’ve been having nightmares about showing up on the day of and forgetting to hire a caterer. I’ve been catching the tiniest blemish in the mirror and berating myself for how unphotogenic I will surely be. Worst of all, I have let this feeling of silent resentment build up when I’m adding to my excel spreadsheet of wedding related tasks after a long day of work and Garrett is lounging on the couch or reading a book. I’ve been a real joy to be around, as you can imagine.

But I started marinating on that exact word this weekend: JOY.

This should be a joyful time.

This *is* a joyful time.

I am marrying my partner in crime, who I love to pieces and we have the means and the time to plan a celebration that has our friends and family actually willing to organize their schedules around. We have people who are excited FOR us, and invested in all of the steps in between. No small thing — and definitely worth gratitude. But I haven’t been acting that way.

I should also mention, if we’re talking about things I am grateful for, this relationship by itself. For ten years it has kept me sane and laughing and entertained and challenged and growing, so I guess it is fitting that I am doing all of those things when planning this wedding.

But here I was sitting at the kitchen table staring at a spreadsheet with a scowl on my face rolling my eyes about tasks and to-do lists and obligations and how women TOTALLY get the short end of the stick with wedding planning and baby-making and GOD IT’S ALL JUST SO UNFAIR I COULD CRY.

When I type that out I feel embarrassed. Embarrassed that I even had all those emotions or that I’ve been going on like this for months. That all of this is my wedding planning story. But I thought a lot about why I am focusing on the negative and the stress instead of the joy, and what do you know — METAPHOR FOR LIFE, ALERT — I think I just I really, really don’t like doing things that I feel I’m not very good at.

And sure, that makes sense. But first of all WHO SAYS I’M NOT GOOD AT THIS??? And second (and more important) how crappy would it be to let this incredibly special and unique time in my life go by being pissed off, when really I’m just kind of scared I’ll make a mistake.

NOW THAT’S JUST SILLY.

On Friday night I had a little Come-To-Jesus conversation with myself where I mostly said, “Self, THIS IS A JOYFUL TIME! And you are allowed to enjoy it even if you are unsure. Also: you are allowed to ask for help. But you are the one who has to choose to be positive, even when you’re freaked out, SO DO IT.” I think the conversation went well, because there was no talking back, you know? :)

On Saturday morning, while having a serious case of the anxiety sweats (AWESOME) I went wedding dress shopping with my mom and my aunt. It was a bit of a turning point because you all there is no better word to describe it than JOYFUL. We had such a great day, it was so easy and effortless. And it really felt like something to be grateful for.

I kept reminding myself, we have a venue we are so stoked about. We have a photographer that we connected with so well we don’t feel nervous. And we have plenty of time before September to iron out all the other details.

So Saturday afternoon I let myself enjoy playing a little bit of dress up and found a dress that — what do you know, looks nothing like any of the dress inspiration I had pinned before hand. It’s not “simple” or “understated” or “classy” or “casually elegant.” All the words that rolled off my lips when I walked in.

It’s freaking bejeweled and sexy and completely different then anything I would have picked off a rack and most important, I FELT LIKE A MILLION BUCKS IN IT! (Which, in the end was good, since that’s just about what it cost! LOL) Hell, I even tried on a veil moments after saying to the girl helping me “I’m totally NOT a veil kind of girl?”

“Just try it on for you mom,” she said. And so I did.

AND THEN I FREAKING BOUGHT IT BECAUSE IT WAS BEAUTIFUL!

And while I thought I wasn’t a veil-girl, I am TOTALLY an accessories girl, and Coco Chanel can just shove it in this instance because I’m going to add ONE MORE accessory instead of removing one. I mean, how many times does one really have an excuse to accessorize like that, right?

Afterward, the 3 of us ladies went out to lunch and just had the best time. A joyous time, even. And I think from here on out, I’m focused on letting that continue.

Well this feels surreal...

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14 comments to A Wedding Update Seems Like A Good Idea

  • Linda Sand
    February 10, 2015 at 4:57 pm

    When you find the right dress you just know it is right. I’m feeling joyful for you.

  • Jesabes
    February 10, 2015 at 5:11 pm

    My dress was bejeweled, too (in the bust area, like the you’re wearing there – I don’t know if that’s the dress you picked…) and almost 8 years later I’m still in love with it and wish I had occasions on which to wear it again :)

  • Melissa Roberts
    February 10, 2015 at 9:32 pm

    I was so much happier planning my wedding when I told myself that in the end it will all be OK! I was planning a Sacramento wedding from San Diego! I eventually told everyone, don’t tell me if there are issues at the wedding, don’t tell me! Haha. You are going to be fabulous. There is no such thing as an imperfect bride! Can’t wait!

  • Tiffany
    February 10, 2015 at 10:38 pm

    Oh, I relate to this post so much! I admit I had some very un-pretty breakdowns when I felt like my never ending wedding task list kept growing while my Handsome Husband’s Xbox gaming levels kept getting higher. In the end, some things fell of the my list and my husband got more involved as the date got closer (turns out, he was very into picking the food, cake and wedding favors). I also loved my wedding dress from the get go! It was short in front, long in back (yes, I still refer to it as the mullet wedding dress) and it had pockets!

  • lindsay
    February 11, 2015 at 4:58 am

    Totally with you on the “I’m not a veil type of girl” and then doing a 180 once that sucker went on your head. Holla!

    And girrrrl I hear you re: everything else. So much stress, yes. Mostly worth it šŸ˜‰

  • Jan
    February 11, 2015 at 5:26 am

    Ok, brand new to your website, but really enjoyed today’s post. One piece of advice from an “old married lady”….remember that the wedding is about family, it’s about celebrating with your family….but it is ONLY a celebration. Anything that goes wrong (ok, maybe except for forgetting the caterer) is simply going to be the thing of stories to tell and retell. The party is more special than your average party, but that is all it is….a party. Celebrate the wedding…..concentrate and spend time working on the marriage. That’s what is most important.

    May your wedding day be full of good, bad and funny memories…..but may your marriage sustain you forever.

  • Maureen
    February 11, 2015 at 7:07 am

    Holly, you look really beautiful in that dress. Is that the one?

    I’ve already shared that we got married in the courthouse-I had exactly the wedding I wanted :) Yours is going to be wonderful, no matter what happens on the day. I’ve never been to a wedding where I thought “well, that didn’t go well!”. As long as the bride and groom are happy, it is a great day.

    I’m so happy you found a dress you love!

  • Amber @ Busy, Bold, Blessed
    February 11, 2015 at 7:58 am

    Yay! I said I wasn’t going to wear a veil either, but then I ended up borrowing a friend’s and I loved it. Your wedding will be fabulous <3

  • Hannah
    February 11, 2015 at 9:05 am

    When I started planning my wedding I would tell everyone who asked about it how laid back I was, and how I didn’t really care about the details, whatever happened was fine with me! I was very smug about my antibridezilla attitude. I was very disappointed when I realized that it didn’t really matter how relaxed I was about it…I still had to plan it. No one else was going to do it for me. Oh, I didn’t care about the details? Then there would BE no details! Whatever happened was going to be whatever I PLANNED. Its all very unfair.

    Now the advice I give (what do you mean you weren’t asking for advice?!) to couples planning their wedding is figure out what your top important things are, and put energy and money there. Skimp on the rest.

    For us that was food and entertainment. We had a Korean taco truck come for food, and hired a live karaoke band, and it was AWESOME.

    Photographer we went cheap (wedding sacrilege!), our cake we had a friend make for 50 bucks, reception we had in a friends (admittedly large and beautiful) backyard.

    My sister’s was all about the location (outdoor amphitheater!) dancing, and inviting a TON of people. It was also AWESOME.

    Your wedding will be awesome. Congratulations!

  • Carli
    February 11, 2015 at 10:32 am

    Holly, my long lost gym buddy. I can not agree more on this entire post, I felt almost the exact same way and I just wanted to say two things to you because I feel your pain. One…approximately 24 hours (or even less) after you say “I do” you won’t care what you ate, what you wore or what you danced to. You have a perma grin (even with a hangover) and you will have a whole lot of happy memories that have nothing to do with spreadsheets or deposits. You won’t care if you forgot something, it really won’t matter at all. Hard to believe now, but very true. And two… Take a deep breath and at least call/email/google a few wedding coordinators. You might be pleasantly surprised at how little you can pay for just the right amount of help. Some offer a package that is just enough to bring the joy back into planning and take a handful of items off your list, well worth it in the end.

    It will be amazing no matter how much or how little you stress, I can promise you that, you will love your wedding!

  • Linda
    February 11, 2015 at 11:54 am

    Everything that you’re feeling and experiencing is totally normal. We’re in the midst of planning and paying for our wedding, too, and let me tell you how envious I am at some of my friends who had parents that could foot the bill. What a cake walk that must be! Like you, I also have sat in front of the wedding spreadsheet and damned it all to hell! BUT, paying for our own wedding also means we get to do it our own way. I LOATHED when people told me, “You HAVE to do it this way” or “You HAVE to have this or that.” Girl, please. This is 2015, we’re paying for everything ourselves, and many of the old rules are out the window.

    I have also had to remind myself (many times) to be present. This is a season of life that I’ll never get back. It can be crazy, overwhelming, exciting, and emotional. Take it all in, process it, and enjoy it.

    One last thing – Make a list (something I’m sure you’ve already done), but when I hit the 100 day mark and had a bridal meltdown, my fiance and I sat down, made a list and started tackling it. It’s amazing what that one thing did for my sanity!

    Can’t wait to see you in your dress!

  • Kristin
    February 13, 2015 at 2:17 pm

    You look gorgeous in that selfie! Can’t wait to see more of the dress. Hang in there. I knew I was going to hate wedding planning, so I purposely had a small wedding, at night, ceremony in same place as reception, no dinner–just appetizers and drinks, and with only 6 months from engagement to wedding, and guess what…the planning still sucked! I did everything as simple as I could and it still was awful. BUT…the wedding was awesome and perfect and I treasure all of my memories. It will be worth it in the end.

  • Michelle
    February 20, 2015 at 4:15 pm

    You’re definitely not the only one to surprise yourself with your wedding dress selection. I imagined myself in a very simple dress, and I vowed that I wouldn’t wear anything A-line, strapless, and poofy. Well, guess what. . . my wedding dress was all three things. But I put it on, and I felt like a bride. I still shake my head at how “un-me” that dress was, but the heart wants what the heart wants. . .

  • ONEWEIRDWORD
    February 23, 2015 at 9:00 am

    I totally did the same thing. I was looking at regular dresses, nice non-wedding dresses. And I was getting so tired of looking. So I went to a small shop in my parent’s town, with my mom. It was quiet. I tried on lots of dresses – even the super silly ones. And then, I found one. I felt like myself in it, only better.

    Of course, I was anti-veil. Very anti. But, just for fun, and because the lady and my mom said, why not, I tried on a full-length veil, that was so long it even dragged. I looked in the mirror, got chills, teared up, and, my mom bought it for me in about 2 seconds. I had so much fun with that veil at the wedding, holding it up – floating it around. I took it off for our luncheon. But I’m so glad I had it.

    I’m loving hearing about your plans, and that photo of you is so pretty! Have fun, girl.

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