Wedding is a four-letter word *#&@!

Published 4:04 pm Friday, April 14, 2017

Tis the season for weddings, as happy couples everywhere prepare to tie the knot. If you’re planning to be married between now and the end of summer, chances are good that you’ve pinned down all your closest single friends for places in your bridal and house parties, invitations are out, shopping for gowns is done, fittings are done, making venue, music, food and travel arrangements for the various events – bridal and lingerie showers, bachelorette and bachelor parties, honeymoon getaways, formal weddings, casual summer weddings, destination weddings – are all complete, if not in the final phases, and you’re right on track with your diet to make sure your dress fits on the big day. Everything is going swimmingly.

OR, your invitations are lost, all the people you’ve invited in hopes they’d just send a gift are actually coming, you still have nothing to wear, you’ve gained 10 lbs., your bridal party is MIA, your groomsmen want to recreate “The Hangover” for a bachelor party, you and your betrothed aren’t even on speaking terms, your mother and mother-in-law to-be are in some kind of feud over whether or not to have a sit-down or buffet reception, the band you finally booked for the occasion has broken up, you’re completely insane from running all over the place trying to find matching garters – one to keep and one to throw, of course – that don’t look like something that should be on a saloon piano player’s arms, and you still haven’t found that perfect guest book to match the theme of your wedding, which is a combo of your favorite anime and your beloved’s favorite live-action first-person shooter zombie apocalypse game, all of which are the most important details of your entire life, which no one seems to understand.

Congratulations! You’re on your way to wedded bliss, becoming a “we” and enjoying all the accoutrements that entails – overwhelming debt from the big day, remembering a honeymoon in a dream locale that you never saw because you were both so exhausted that you never left the hotel room, practicing the lies you’ll tell about what a wonderful time you both had, getting home to find that your wedding pictures have come in and your eyes are closed in every one. Then, changing all of your IDs and official paperwork to match your new name and finding out that it isn’t free, changing your beneficiary on your life insurance from your long-time friend and roommate, Mr. Whiskers, to your new spouse, making a will – to insure that Mr. Whiskers is amply provided for in the event of a tragedy, of course – even though your new better half thinks he’s ONLY a cat, spending a year trying to remember to check the “married” box on everything and convincing the bank you’ve been with since your grandparents opened the account for you at age 2 that you are you, practicing your new signature, saying your name over and over until you almost like it, unless you didn’t change it, and instead spending the first year listening to your in-laws talk about how confused your children are going to be, and, of course, dealing with meddlesome in-laws and questions about when you’re having children with daily reminders that “You’re not getting any younger.”

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Stop. Take a deep breath. And, stop watching those TV shows. You know the ones. It’s time to change your focus. Instead of focusing on THE day, focus on the relationship that led to it and the lifetime of love and companionship ahead of you both. Worrying about every detail into minutia only creates more stress. A wedding is a happy day – one day – for friends and family to come together in celebration of a milestone and finding THE one, your partner and companion for life. Embrace that. A wedding is just a day – the first day – marriage is the rest of your lives. Talk to your significant other. If you’re not on speaking terms already, email, text or send a smoke signal –whatever works. Meet at a favorite place. Talk about what is going on and what you both want. Make a budget and stick to it. Make a pact that no matter how it all goes down on the big day that you’re in it together and you’ll get through it together. Things are going to go wrong. Things always do. Laugh about it together so you can cherish the memory of it later. In life, nothing is ever going to be perfect, and worrying about it won’t change a thing.