Expectations about wedding(s): past and present

26 Apr

Once upon a time, a long time ago, when I was a little girl, what I thought was the perfect wedding was sort of like Cinderella, only I wanted a veil, a beautiful red rose bouquet,  and (of course) a horse drawn carriage. But as I got older I realized that I didn’t like those poofy sleeves or the gloves. I did like her tiny waist and how beautiful and graceful she looked. When I got married the first time we eloped–went to the courthouse and applied for our marriage license, got it and went to the justice of the peace/magistrate and she married us in a small church across the street from the magistrate’s office. No one else was there. I wore a pale peach dress and my ex husband wore a black suit with a leather tie thing that looked like something from a western movie. When I proceeded to put the ring on his finger I almost put on his right hand instead of his left. We stumbled over the words. I had doubts on the way to the magistrate’s office. My parents couldn’t afford to throw me a big wedding. We didn’t have the money to pay for a wedding. And I was young, so young (22 years old). Looking back on it later, I realized we could have done something small. Like what my parents did when they got married (in someone’s home, with only family and close friends) with a best man and a MOH.

My first marriage lasted 3 years and 9 months, it ended almost 19 years ago. I am finally marrying the ONE. And now that I am FINALLY having a wedding I’ve realized my expectations have changed a great deal. 

At my age (I’ll be 45 in July), I find the big traditional Cinderella type wedding unappealing. What I do find appealing is something more along the lines of a celebration of OUR DAY. And that is what this whole thing is about…our day. Sure, it’s a wedding but it’s much more than that: it’s about our commitment to spend the rest of our lives together, our love for each other and those we want to share our day with. I don’t need a traditional white wedding dress, a veil, limo, church, caterer, wedding planner…to do that.

 Funny thing about weddings, years ago when my parents were married there wasn’t as much hoopla. The wedding industry has blown things up, out, and beyond the realm of realistic. Prices for things that are even remotely related to a wedding cost way more. The hype about weddings is ridiculous: Bridezillas, Bib Redneck Weddings, Say Yes to the Dress, My Fair Wedding, Four Weddings, TLC’s Weddings, I Propose, Rock the Reception, Platinum Weddings…just to name a few. So with all of the hype about weddings it is no wonder that so many women feel the need to have what society (the media, etc) have deemed to be the “right kind of” wedding, or like another blogger said, “a perfect wedding.” Personally, I’m happy having a non-traditional, front yard wedding with a backyard barbecue reception. Don’t worry, we’re probably going to have red and white checkerboard table clothes. I’m more than okay with not spending $20,000+ for a wedding. It’s one day. Although it is an important day, it’s what you do with the rest of the days after that one day that are really important.


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