Wedding Planning: Taking on the Beast

I never really thought Tamon would propose this soon. I knew that our parents wanted it (my parents called every weekend after we moved in to ask, Are you engaged yet?) Despite the false urgency, I took it all in stride and relegated marriage to the long-term future.

Little did I know Tamon was laying down plans (sneaking, lying to me for four months and causing my friends and families lie to me!). And when I asked, he told me he would probably propose at the end of the year. More lies! Thus I was caught off-guard. Despite being unexpected, it was all very sweet (hey, at least the outcome was the same).

When I saw the ring, I realized life was saying, “Hey, this is for realsies!”

And it was bling — despite of all my rants against Sierra Leone blood diamonds. And in spite of myself, I loved it, diamonds and all (although Tamon reassured me that it came from a reputable source. I still feel a little guilty). Oh, how quickly my principles fly out the door. For love. And bling.

Now that I’ve answered one big question, the next is: Should we have a wedding?

I’m still two years away from finishing my master’s and I haven’t even taken my core requirements yet. Also we want to buy a house.

My initial thought was no. But as you all know, I’ve been planning a wedding for the past few months. Wedding stuff = kryptonite for my resolve. Also parents’ wishes = official mandates = Christian ceremony and Chinese banquet.

It’s kind of hard to fight it all. It tends to come at you all at the same time. And once you start looking at Pinterest, blogs and wedding websites, you get sucked in. Your friends and family can be enablers — do not give in.

Thankfully, I grew thicker skin later to the process and began sticking to my guns. First thing I did was put together a budget. Many people thought I was being too practical or regimented about it. Jason asked if I needed an intervention. After four meltdowns, I wondered if I was even enjoying any of this. But I think deciding how much you can spend on each item, down to the napkins and confetti poppers is important especially when you’re working with limited finances. I don’t need to pay extra for beautiful details. I’m the kind of person who thinks it’s sad if your wedding day does end up being the happiest day of your married life. I think every day before it or subsequent day should have the same potential to be as beautiful.

It’s a preference, I supposed. During the course of the wedding, the biggest struggle was identifying why this wedding was important and what I wanted from it.

Meaning of our wedding: A celebration with our families and friends

It really helps to know who this wedding is for. Tamon and I don’t love to be in the spotlight but we do love our family and friends. So we want everyone there and we want the wedding to resonate with people. So this helped us easily prioritize our finances for the wedding.

Priorities in the order of importance:

Food

Alcohol

Dessert

Everything else

Since poor Tamon seems allergic to planning, wedding will also mean a crucible for our relationship. Just kidding, he’s been a doll. Ninety-nine percent of the time.

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