We are gearing up to celebrate our tenth birthday at Polka Dot Bride and as you can imagine, there are some lessons we have learned over the past ten years of writing about all things weddings Today, it’s all about engagements. Read on for the biggest lessons and tips we have learned about the time the question is answered and the rollercoaster of emotions that comes with it.
It Never Goes As Planned
There are so many situations where we dream up scenarios and have this expectation that it’s going to go perfectly and yet, it never really turns out that way. Instead of that glam outfit, you had planned you might get engaged wearing your oldest jumper and rattiest jeans. Instead of that perfect moment and the perfect question being popped as the fireworks explode, you may instead be rained out, or be surrounded by screaming children.
Moments like this are never as we dreamt, but they’re ones we retell time and time again and laugh about because they make the stories ours.
You’ll Get Questions Right Away
The minute you share the news, you’ll get questions ” What’s your wedding date?” “Where are you getting married?” “What is your wedding style going to be?”. Sometimes it can be frustrating, it can feel like everyone is pressuring you to decide, to come up with a plan. Really, everyone is just so excited for you and eager to share in your joy.
Photo by Kelly Adams Photography via Mia & Jon’s Frolic by the Seaside Engagement
You Don’t Have To Do Anything But Enjoy It
And following on from the above, it’s completely okay to kick back and enjoy it. Share your excitement with your friends, bask in that newly engaged glow, celebrate, enjoy it- nothing else needs to happen but enjoy this really special time.
You Don’t Even Have To Plan A Wedding Yet
Don’t feel like a wedding is something you want in the next year? In the next two years? That’s completely fine! Whether you are engaged for six months or ten years- this is your decision and resist the pressure to do it anything but the best way for you.
It Will Be The Best Of Times & The Worst Of Times
While your engagement is so wonderfully exciting and joyful, it can also be a time of disappointment and struggles and that’s okay. I call engagement a bit of an emotional hothouse- feelings come out, pain comes out, stress is magnified and people who you rely on may not show up. You may struggle with budgetary discussions, friendships, family, the sadness of those who are not able to be present. This is all part of planning a wedding and while this sounds like a complete downer, it’s just another part of this transition in life and one that you are more than capable of navigating through.
Photo by Matt Reed via Crystal & Danny’s Sydney Waterside Engagement
Overwhelm Is Very Real
What flowers do you want? How many bridesmaids? Why haven’t you booked that yet? Why not this idea? Or that one?
Wedding overwhelmed is real- the to-do list can seem endless and the decisions never ending. Make sure to take plenty of wedding free time and work together through the lists and to-dos to reduce your stress. I am always an advocate of wedding planners (especially if you worry and want to delegate!), they can be your greatest advocates and can help share some of the load.
There Will be So Many Bubbles (And Cake!)
Yay, we booked our photographer, let’s drink champagne to celebrate. Hooray, I haven’t seen you since I got engaged, let’s drink champagne to celebrate! Hooray elt’s catch up and drink champagne. Should there ever be a time you think this is time to cut back, to create a healthier lifestyle- this is not it. It’s so incredibly fun to be celebrating with your favourite people
Working On A Wedding Mission Statement Will Save Your Heartache
I say this time and time again but it really is one of my favourite tips. Sitting down with your beloved and figuring out what you want your wedding to look like, how you want it to feel and what is most important to you (whether that be photography, food, music- you name it!) can give you such a clear roadmap when faced with stress or difficulties along the road. It will allow you to remember what is most important and allow you to let go of the rest while still having the wedding that is exactly what you want.
Photo by Morgan Roberts via Jackie & Reilly’s Outdoor Queensland Engagement
Being Yourself Is Crucial
If you’re someone who loves everything vintage, a modern slcik celebration might not be for you. if you spend all your time in the city- perhaps that’s the best location for your day. if you couldn’t think of anything worse than being looked at by hundreds of people, perhaps keep your guest list small. This is about you and your belove- make decisions that are truly about you. Not about what the latest thing is, what someone says, what a publication shows- be yourself and your day will be incredible.
It Is & Isn’t Just About You
This is kind of a funny piece of advice, but it’s one I have been reminded of time and time again.
While your wedding is very much about you and your beloved and shouldn’t be dominated or domineered by anyone else, life does go on after the wedding and it’s so important to remember that as you make decisions that may hurt others will last long after the day is over. If your mum has dreamt of making your wedding cake all her life and it will cast a dark shadow for her if you reject the idea- how does that work into your relationship after the day? If you leave one aunt out of six off the guest list, will that sever that relationship? Make the decisions that are right for you, but consider the lasting effects too before you decide on things that may determine the future of your relationships.