It was an early morning and I had just got to work. And as I always do, I sip my coffee and ease into my day by first reading a few emails from the day before and making a to-do list with a well-to-do pen. It always matters what type of pen I am using that day. The swiftness of the ink on paper is an indicator of how my day will eventually end up; blotchy or smooth.
I hadn’t finished reading my fifth email when I realized I needed to make sure I had my report into my client by end of day. As I begin to write down my first bullet point of the day, my pen runs out of ink and my coworker strolls in.
My coworker is not just my coworker, but over the months we have developed a bond unlike many working relationships. We have seen each other’s ups and downs, and let’s face it, when you are bunked with someone for 40 hours every week, you can’t help but fall in love with who they are.
With a discerned look in her eye and a pout in her lip, I knew something was up.
You see, a couple months ago she got engaged. Her man: perfect for her. Her ring: beyond gorgeous. Her stress vs. excitement: no comment; the planning has begun.
I listened to her frustrations until the coffee in my cup disappeared and I was left sipping air. In a moment of complete happiness that her life with her soul mate was truly beginning, her stress levels in regards to money, venue, other people’s happiness and Pinterest have skyrocketed to Pluto, and the galaxy was leaving her with so many unanswered questions.
“When will we get married?”
“Where will we get married?”
“Will people have fun?”
“How much is that food?”
“No, really. THAT much?”
“Will this venue be classy enough?”
“Does this venue look too cheap?”
But an even bigger question: “What will people think?”
As wedding photographer part-time, and as a woman, I can understand where she was coming from. Society, reality shows, social media and especially close friends, has really put the added pressure on what it means to get married. You need to have the best of the best. The best venue, the best details, the best dress. The best wedding.
And the only question I had: “Why?”
I really started to unravel all of the preconceived notions that come with the purpose of a wedding; why people get married and what it means to be married.
Answer: Marriage is highly sought after because of the level of commitment. Marriage is for life and it is seen as a celebration of two people, who unequivocally match, finding each other. Marriage is trust. Marriage is never giving up. Marriage is support.
In all the threads unraveled, not one of them had to do with other people.
A final question you should ask yourself:
Am I saying I want a fairytale wedding because this is truly what we want as a couple, or because this is what others expect?
Reflect on your stress and the meaning behind it. Don’t let this mean ol’ wedding industry push you around. It is your day, your life, your celebration.