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By Real Brides-to-Be
A Premarital Valentine's Day
By: | Posted: 11/09/2012
I've been watching too much TLC. Someone needs to confiscate the remote and help me to just say no to all of these Say Yes To The Dress marathons.
As a bride-to-be, if I am to believe what reality wedding shows tell me, it's that The Perfect Wedding is attainable, and that is a dangerous cliché. Adopting this lofty goal ensures you're not only embarking on a long road to disappointment (and Prozac, probably) but you're inadvertently ripping the soul from what should be the loveliest, most heartfelt day.
What my fiancé, Ian, and I are attempting to do with our own celebration is to make it exactly that—a big party honoring our relationship, our loved ones, and our life in general. And life, as it turns out, comes with beautiful imperfections.
We were at a wedding last month—one of many this year—where the bride let out what can only be described as an unfiltered emotional yelp straight into her bouquet as she walked down the aisle. Friends and family in attendance supported her with applause, smiles, and heartening laughter, and it united the room and lightened the mood. I'm sure my friend didn't anticipate she'd be "ugly crying" into her flowers at any point during the ceremony, but it made for a very real, incredibly sweet start. I'll remember how beautiful she looked and how vulnerable she was at that moment. I'll remember the great conversation I had with her grandfather and brother. But I couldn't tell you what we had for dinner or the color of the groomsmen's bowties. In the end, fussing about those details just takes away from what's important.
My hope in writing this wedding blog is to encourage brides (and myself, honestly) to infuse the soul back into weddings, limiting crazy expectations to achieve perfection, and the desire to impress anyone and everyone. I'm no expert at this, so I'm bound to falter and have my own joys and failures. I feel lucky to be embarking on this experience at all; I never thought I'd be married. I just so happened to catch a break and find the loveliest, most dashing, smartest, beautifully imperfect man I've ever met.
I've been engaged to Ian now for nine months and am getting married in a short six on May 11 at The Grand Hotel in downtown Minneapolis. It's going to be great. It will be flawed but fantastic, insane but incredible—and I wouldn't have it any other way.
Jen Boyles is a part-time music writer for City Pages, a full-time social media specialist for Olson Agency, and an all-time fashion obsessive.
Carly is manager, Social Media and Audience Engagement at MSP-C. See her engagement story.
Vanessa is creative director and co-founder at Bow & Arrow Magazine. See her engagement story.
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