I'm excited to share this guest column with you! Mandyrosy shares some of the frustrations and difficulties that come from collaborating with your fiance to plan a wedding. I hear you, sister; I really do.
Let me just preface this by noting that I love my fiancé very, very very much. We share many of the same life interests and goals. We've known each other for over eight years and worked hard to establish a good, caring, strong relationship.
We've been planning our September wedding for about six months now. Well, most of the time, really, we've been not planning our wedding. We've been planning our trail run and working on our work and finding a new place to live together and moving.
But the other day I decided it was time for us to start thinking about the ceremony. (Unfortunately, in our process it is my job to create a sort of wedding lesson plan and assign regular homework projects to my Dearly Beloved.) We'd thought about virtually every other aspect of the weekend, but not the actual marrying part. Of course, I had been reading around on the blogs, getting various ideas of interesting, not-too-weird, not-too-out-there things to try. I asked DB to look into it. Then I sent him a few links. Instead of noticing the sweet, loving touches of the I was trying to point out, he noticed creative beer receptacles and elements of the party.
So I tried suggesting some of the things I had liked. We went up to look at our ceremony site and talk over some ideas. I mentioned readings as a way to incorporate family and friends (we have a wedding party of two – the Maid of Honor and the Best Man) and said maybe we could have about four. He thought that was too many and insisted that most wedding guests would really prefer it if the wedding was as short as possible because they didn't really want to be there anyway. I wasn't so stuck on the numbers, but the idea that our guests would actually be hating every moment of the wedding really bothered me. I pointed out that all the friends/family I had invited probably wanted to see us get married, since that was what we were inviting them to do. He insisted that many guests – esp. all male guests – would basically just be counting down to the reception. Finally, he noted that anything creative I wanted to do with the ceremony was really "just for me" and "wouldn't mean anything" to our guests.
I may have exploded. To me, trying to involve my family and friends in the wedding is really important. I have a large family and friends who are traveling long distances to be there, and I love them all dearly. I also want to have a ceremony that illustrates who we are and shows people how much we love each other.
Unfortunately, planning this loving ceremony has brought out the less-than-lovely side of me.
I yelled, I cried. Finally, I gunned the engine of my pickup and fishtailed as we pulled out of the parking lot, all while angrily gesticulating and explaining.
Why, I asked, did he have to shoot down all of my ideas so negatively and immediately while putting forth none of his own?
Well, he saw it as his role to "reign me in," he replied.
Whoa there, cowboy. Poor choice of words.
"Reign me in? Reign me in? What ever gave you the idea I needed to be reigned in? What outlandish idea have I ever suggested?!" This sputtered by the very angry owner of a $20 vintage wedding dress, who is getting married in a state park with minimal decorations. Who will style her own hair and makeup. Who took their own engagement photos and DIYed their recycled-paper invites. Whose friends and family members are baking the cake, arranging the locally grown flowers and making his ring. Who is planning a BBQ instead of a and encouraging guests to camp instead of reserving a swanky hotel.
I never thought I needed reigning in. Somehow, though, DB has imagined that as his role and will occasionally squat like a wet blanket over all things wedding.
Despite his wonderfulness, he has often used the phrase "It's your day" to attempt to pawn off all planning responsibilities on me. But then, just when he's insisted he doesn't care and I should do whatever I want to do, he expresses an unbending opinion about some key aspect.
We have gone round and round with, "It's your wedding." "No, it's our wedding."
There are times when wedding planning is not fun. I think every intended has the occasional wedding spat. If you're like DB and I, this might be the first big event you've ever planned together. In our latest (unheated) conversation about it, we concluded that we're both generally solo planners, the kind who don't work well in groups.
But we're getting there. After we'd cooled off, DB confessed that he'd never thought of the ceremony beyond us saying our vows to each other, and that alone is the most important part to him.
Today I had a flash of saying those vows and slipping the ring on his finger, promising to love him forever. And I didn't see anyone's face but his.