This round of ‘tips from the brides’ is brought to you by one of my dearest friends, Claudia! With a little help from her husband Chris, of course :) They had an absolutely perfect day for their wedding at Whitehall Manor last June, and I’m so thankful they were willing to share a little bit about their experience with you all! You can click HERE to see more from their wedding :) and with that, I will let Claudia take it from here! :)
Jessica (the first bride to share) had excellent tips and I would recommend reading that blog post if you haven’t already. If you read both posts you can walk away with 10 tips! Since she covered a lot of things that I would echo, instead of repeating those, I’m going to share with you 5 tips regarding the wedding day! However, our #1 tip will have to overlap and hopefully its reiteration will highlight its importance.
1. Prepare for your marriage, not just for the wedding day: When you run a race (5k, half marathon, marathon) you shouldn’t just go but new tennis shoes, running shorts, and stop watch…If you don’t want to be that person who faints 1 mile in, you should probably train, right? In the same way, when you plan your wedding day, you shouldn’t just buy the wedding dress, the sparklers, and the flowers…You should equip your relationship with knowledge and tools that will help you walk through the easy and the difficult times. A big misconception in our society is that pre-engagement or pre-marital counseling is only designed for those couples who stumble upon “issues” before tying the knot. Yes, pre-marital counseling can help you work through those things before saying “yes,” but it also equips you to better understand how each of you individually works and how the two of your work together. Chris and I had the privilege to walk through phenomenal counseling and almost on a weekly basis we use the advice and tools we received. It has given us so much freedom and joy by allowing us avoid unnecessary conflict and also work through misunderstanding or disagreements in an effective way. If you want to run a marathon well, train. If you want a healthy marriage, I strongly recommend that you invest in good quality pre-marital counseling. 2. Your wedding day is for celebrating and not for worrying about logistics. Inevitably, there will be things that day that could cause you to worry; however, choose not to. Choose joy and celebration over worrying and planning that day.
3. To make tip # 2 possible, something that helped us was having someone in charge of making sure everything was flowing well on the “big day.” You can have a professional wedding coordinator or a friend/family friend take on that role. This person can be there to delegate and be the point of reference that day. My husband came up with the idea of no questions to the bride unless they were run by the coordinator first. He figured the coordinator could answer 99% of them and that would free me to celebrate. As a side note, we asked a close friend to help us by taking on this role, and even though it’s not her full-time job, she did a wonderful job! If you can’t hire a professional one, don’t hesitate to ask someone to help in this way. It makes a huge difference.
4. On a similar note, another idea to make tip # 2 possible, is having a detailed timeline. This will give you and everyone else who is an active participant (wedding party, photographer, DJ, etc.) a flexible idea of how the day is going to flow. Another benefit of making a timeline is that you and your groom get to choose how you will spend your time that day. Have the person mentioned in tip # 2 manage the timeline that day; do not be in charge of it yourself. After all have you ever seen a bride wearing a watch? (Credit to Chris for this observation.) Your job is to ENJOY!
5. Finally, it’s okay to experiences all kinds of emotions that day…it’s a big day (and you’re a girl)! You’re making one of the most important decisions of your life—making a promise to love and encourage an imperfect person, like you, through the good and the bad days, for the rest of your life…that’s a big deal but not one to fear. That day whether you express it or not, you will be joyful, you will be grateful, you will be nostalgic, you will be excited, and if you are aware of the true meaning of marriage, you might be tempted to be overwhelmed or at times afraid. My advice is that when/if fear sneaks in, you fight it with Truth. God designed marriage and thus He is for marriage. Your love is not perfect, your spouse’s love will not be perfect, but God’s love is. On that day, surrender yourself and your marriage to the LORD and trust that He is and can be the source of great love. “All who confess that Jesus is the Son of God have God living in them, and they live in God. We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love. God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. And as we live in God, our love grows more perfect… Such love has no fear; because perfect love expels all fear…We love each other because he loved us first.” 1 John 4:15-18
Happy Monday! :)