A wedding is a party. A marriage is forever and as such, the greater part of your focus should be in preparation for the forever thing.
Grump buckets will tell you the modern wedding is a bastardized event that is the culmination of generations of a materialistic patriarchal society, poked in the eye by modern feminism in an attempt to “take it back”. Those people are only happy if they have something to bitch about so ignore them. A wedding has the potential to be something amazing and wonderful, a testament to two people finding each other and publicly declaring it to the world. In order to do that, the mysticism of “THE WEDDING” has to be knocked down to the appropriate peg.
All you “need” to get married is two people who want to spend the rest of their lives together and someone to sign the paperwork. The manner in which you decide to perform that act and celebrate after wards is all personal preference. If you are a deeply spiritual person the ceremony should reflect your beliefs. If your community of friends and family is important to you, then you should incorporate them. If you’re into throwing a raging kegger with a light show, flamethrowers and naked body painted servers, you better invite me. But keep in mind, all the stuff, and that’s what it is is “stuff”, isn’t the priority. It’s an afterthought.
The intent of every wedding should be the start of a marriage. To totally rip off Shakespeare for my own devices, “The marriage is the thing”. In Hamlet, the “thing” is the undeniable proof of his uncle’s killing his father. The marriage is the proof of the relationship. Not the wedding. If you want a big ass party you can have one whenever you want, in as many themes as you want, you could have a hundred “weddings”. If you don’t like one it’s not the end of the world.
It kills me to see couples being more concerned with “rustic elegance” vs “vintage garden” then they are about proving and solidifying their relationship.
Good God, you have found someone who loves you, who wants to spend the rest of their lives with you! Who want their names next to yours on ancestry.com for the next thousand years. Who wants to make sure that their identity is tangled up with yours forever. All the place settings and flower arrangements in the universe pale in comparison next to that. You owe it to yourself and your partner to nurture that and give it the respect it deserves.
Weddings are disposable, marriages are not.
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