How to deal with disappointment on your wedding day

Imagine this: it’s the morning of your wedding. You’re calmly getting ready with your best girls, enjoying the little bubble of pampering that you’re in before the chaos of the day begins. Suddenly your phone buzzes: it’s a drop out. Then it buzzes again: more people can’t make it. Suddenly your phone is off the hook with people sending their apologies and wishing you the best. Sound bad? I know – I lived it. 

How many brides do you think walk into their venue and notice something that wasn’t in the plan? How many women anxiously await their new husband’s speech, expecting fireworks only to be presented with a limp and soggy sparkler, helplessly fizzling out along with her hopes and dreams and… OK I’m being dramatic, but the truth is your wedding day won’t necessarily go to plan (or to fantasy). Things go wrong in life. People can be rubbish and badly let you down, reality doesn’t always live up to expectations. So how do you deal with it when your day isn’t going the way you’d hoped?

Prepare yourself

Yes, that sounds awfully depressing. But so many brides build up their big days in their heads to a mythological status, and then feel very disappointed when the day wasn’t exactly as pictured. Nothing is perfect, marriage included, and your wedding day doesn’t come with a guarantee that nothing will go wrong.

Start preparing yourself mentally for the idea that things might not go to plan. Don’t focus on it or panic about it, just let go of the importance you’ve placed on it all being exactly as you hope.

Let go of the things you can’t control

So it rains on your wedding day. It’s not ironic at all (don’t get me started, Alanis) but it is annoying. However, as annoying as it may be, what are you going to do about it? If you have to implement your wet weather plan, are you going to spend your entire wedding day yelling at clouds? Like this? Let go of the things you can’t control and make your peace with them. They may be irritating, disappointing but being sad about them all day will only serve to limit your enjoyment of your wedding day.

Have a contingency plan

Some things are beyond your control – some things aren’t. Don’t be the bride that gets caught out spending hundreds of pounds on a beautiful, inflexible table plan. Make sure you can shuffle people around at the last minute if need be. We had removable hearts that could be moved all over the shop if need be.

Worried about suppliers backing up? Be prepared with a list of alternative, local suppliers, just in case someone bails. It’s unlikely but it’s possible, and you want to prepare for every eventuality. Make sure you have a few suppliers jotted down in each category as most people are booked up on popular wedding days.

You can’t control the weather, but you can have a wet weather plan in place, should it not be on your side.

Stay calm and don’t cry

You know the bit on Don’t Tell the Bride where we have to sit through an hour of whining and cries of “I’m not doing it” before the bride eventually goes ahead with the wedding? That. Don’t lose your cool, cry with happiness, not frustration and try not to be the nightmare bride that nobody wants to have to deal with.

Remember, nobody else knew the plan

The best advice my dad gave me before my wedding day was that if things didn’t go to plan, nobody would care because I was the only one with a fixed idea of what the plan was. A supplier once told me the story of a bride who ruined her own wedding day upset about the wrong centrepieces being delivered. To the detail-worshippers like me, this sounds like total sacrilege, but the truth was nobody at that wedding knew that the centrepieces weren’t what was ordered. Lots of them commented on how lovely they were, and yes, it was an annoying wobble, but at the end of the day it wasn’t what the wedding was about.

Remember why you’re there

You may face disappointment on your big day, but as long as you’re married at the end of it, then everything worked out in the end. So don’t get hung up on detail, what you think ought to happen or the injustice of anything being messed up, just enjoy being the bride, take things as they come and marry the love of your life!

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