My love-hate relationship with weddings

Those of you who know me personally or who have been reading this blog for a while may have noticed that I have a love-hate relationship with weddings.

My lovely friend turned bridezilla (half joking, L… Love your face… But, I also can’t wait until it is married) pointed out to me last night at her bachelorette party (which was pretty awesome, if I do say so myself, though we did fail at staying up late enough to go see her brother’s band play) that I am a grinch.  A wedding grinch.  And she is right, I kind of am.  Okay, kind of shouldn’t be in the phrase.

Weddings can’t be that bad… Awesome bachelorette parties with my co-matron of honour and our best friend and future bride all sporting awesome homemade t-shits and bowling. We are so cool.

At the same time as I am a wedding grinch, I get so excited that people are getting married, it is foolish.  Like when V got married and I was up all night with a migraine trying to mix medications that shouldn’t be mixed and I still managed to start hopping around by 9am shouting, “my best friend is getting married.”  Or when the Child got married and I practically bounced off the walls I was so pumped, despite the disasters that kept occurring.  Or when our small group friends C&C got married and we managed to turn it into a weekend away event.

Marriage is something worth being high fived for.

Child’s husband D was consistently pumped that we were getting married. This is our “you’re married!” high five.

Weddings are something worth eye gouging.

Unfortunately, you have to go through a wedding to get to the marriage part.

Patrick said at the bachelor party last night, he and the married guys agreed that they are significantly happier being married than being single.  I agree.  And I am overly thrilled when people get married.  It is Biblical.  And Biblical in the earliest of senses… I mean, the first two humans on Earth were married.  God uses marriage to describe the relationship between Christ and the church.  Thus, marriage, is, as a rule the best thing before and since sliced bread!

I love seeing people together and happy.  I love the love that comes from those relationships.  It thrills me to see how to people can bring out the best in one another and show Christ’s love in such a beautiful way.  I love how one day results in a forever.

The soon to be married couple. Looking cool as cucumbers a month before the big day. Props to the Child on this super awesome engagement photo.

Because I love marriage so much and I am so happy to see people getting married, one would think I would love weddings.  And I do… I love what they stand for and what they result in.  I like that each one is a bit unique.

The problem is, a wedding these days is not as simple as God saying Adam and Eve were man and wife.

Weddings involve planning.  I like planning.  But, I don’t like planning so much for something so brief.  The dresses and the decorations and the flowers and the music and the reception and the dance.  So much stuff.  To me it just seems foolish.  Yes, celebrating is great.  Making it memorable is recommended.  But, why all the stuff and all the stress.

I like the KISS principle.  Keep it simple, stupid.

Most weddings do not follow this valuable principle.

I was told that I was mean during my wedding planning process.  Because I wanted to keep it simple.  And I knew what I did not want.  And I didn’t care about almost anything else.  And people kept pressuring me in areas that I was already decided in.  I admit it, I was super cranky about it.  I am sorry.

In the end, none of those things mattered.  We are married.  It is over.  The marriage is what matters, not the wedding.  Not what color the bridesmaid dresses were (though they may argue the green was terrible), not that we did not light candles or have a formal reception or a dance.  In fact, there are chunks of that day I am not sure I recall properly.

Some people plan weddings for months or years… Things still go wrong.  And in the end, generally they don’t matter. So, why all the stress.  I hate the stress.  I don’t like seeing my lovely friends get worked up over guest lists (when they won’t be able to even see everyone or remember who exactly was there minus the really important folks), decorations (that get ripped down the instant things are done) or exactly where something falls in the order of service (odds are the pastor will mix it up anyway).  It breaks my heart to see people freaking out over such little things when it is supposed to be a good and happy day.  When they should be enjoying their time of engagement and preparing for marriage, not a wedding.

I don’t like that weddings put undue pressure on people.  That people put undue pressure on weddings and all of that stuff.  It isn’t fair to the couple or the family (or for that matter, the lovely friends who put up with it all).  Weddings are supposed to be celebrations, not shows.  They aren’t there to please people, but to please God and celebrate the couple.

Weddings can be wasteful.  People put a lot of money into weddings and wedding related stuff.  I am not saying people shouldn’t.  But, sometimes I wonder why you buy a blender when it wasn’t on a person’s gift registry.  Now they have 5.  Great.  Yes, they can donate some of their extras to charity and such.  That is wonderful.  Nonetheless, people waste so much on things that aren’t even used.  And take tulle for instance… Do you know how much that stuff costs?  A lot more than it should for holey fabric with irritating texture that is used to make a church look more wedding-ish.

And then, there is the time sink… Weddings are time consuming.  Showers, decorating, planning, running around with one’s head cut off.  I can think of better uses of time.  Again, doing this in small doses is useful and practical, but there comes a point where one can look back and wonder “WHY?”.

Lastly, people.  Weddings have a lot of people overload inherent in them.  All of the events and such have people.  Introvert nightmare.  Even if you like them… That many people over that much time gets overwhelming.

But, back to the positives.  Weddings are a very personal and yet public demonstration of love.  It is nice that they are unique.  It is good to put time into them.  And things like showers and parties support those people through the changes and starting life together.  It is good to love and support others, especially your loved ones.

They are also a chance to see and share with people you care about.  Nothing brings a family together like weddings and funerals.  Don’t know about you, but I do prefer a wedding over a funeral any day.

They are pretty… The decorations (even the tulle), the music, the beautiful bride…. They make for something lovely to see and hear and remember.

Secretly (okay, not so secretly), I do love to plan and organize and all that good stuff, so weddings are, in theory up my alley in that sense.  I just prefer it in a low dosage more intimate sort of environment.  If I could plan a small wedding or event, but not have to deal with too much outside stuff, I would be content.  Especially if there was no tulle.

And yet again, weddings result in marriage.  That is the piece that matters most. So, despite the fact that I am quite a grinch when it comes to weddings because of my dislike for crowds and social pressures and waste, they are wonderful… Just not until the day they happen or only on the days the planning or events are low key (like last night).


2 thoughts on “My love-hate relationship with weddings

  1. My first thought is that you are a bit young to have these feelings. Most young folks love the pageantry that goes with weddings. However, I think I felt like you did even when I was young. I got the most gross brown towels (really a lousey shade of brown) for a wedding gift and had no idea what to do with them. I certainly wouldn’t give them to anyone and I hate to see money wasted! What were they thinking?

    • The funny part is that I have always had those feelings for weddings. I never was a fairy tale girl, even when I was a teenager. I don’t get people and the ugly stuff ideas. I got some terrible pastel floral placemats, tablecloth and napkins that all matched. They frighten me and are something that seems cruel to pass off. Some of the nicer stuff we regifted or gave away, but we can’t do anything with those. It seems sometimes things might have been better just not given, even if it is the thought that counts (I just wonder what they were thinking).

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