WEDDING EDITION #1: WHY I DIDN’T LET COVID19 STOP MY WEDDING
After 1,037 days of a godly courtship, “THE WAIT” is finally over!!! Yes- I’m married! Whew Chile!!! Planning a wedding in the middle of COVID was absolutely no joke and not for the weak! But, I wouldn’t take my journey back for nothing. I am finally getting the time to slow down from the wedding ceremony whirlwind and reflect! So let me start out by saying this. Every woman you know has probably been planning her wedding since the age of 5. She knew what her dress was going to look like. She knew where her wedding ceremony was going to be. And if you ask her, she even thought she knew exactly who she would marry. Ha! But no little girl ever dreams of delayed wedding plans, infectious diseases, mandatory masks and guest list reductions. No matter how you slice it, it was never in her plans. And if you are one of those 2020 Brides whose wedding or honeymoon plans got nixed or altered, my heart goes out to you because I know exactly what you experienced. I speak from the heart. So, if you know anyone who is currently planning and needs a lift, be sure to share this with them. Here are 7 reasons why I decided not to let COVID19 prevail.
Reason #1: They Were Never Coming In The First Place.
Don’t get this confused with the people who actually couldn’t come or the people you had to elminate because of the pandemic. You know who I’m talking about. The people that could come but just don’t and won’t. The people who eliminated themselves. Listen, if you are one of those 2020 Brides currently in a bind trying to decide on whether or not you should move ahead and have your wedding or not, my answer to you is “YES!” with a capital Y-E-S girl. I, probably like you, struggled during my wedding planning journey because I was so concerned about who could, who would and who wouldn’t come. Well, let me tell you something, all those people you thought you needed, you absolutely 100% do not!!!!! The only people you need to be concerned with having present is God, Jesus, your husband, your parents, a true blue friend, and your immediate family honey. And guess what, if you keep it real with yourself, even some of your Family won’t come or won’t want to be there anyways so why bother with putting your wedding off for people who probably weren’t going to come in the first place? (P.S. This doesn’t include the people that were coming but just couldn’t.) You can do so much more with less!!!!!
Less drama. Less money. Less hassle. While state laws confine where and when you can have your ceremony, they also define who can and can’t come. And guess what? IT IS OKAY. Even if laws or workplaces are not the limitation, you will still have people use COVID as an excuse not to come. But if you properly assess these people, you will probably find that those who use the COVID excuse are not your real friends anyways. So, bottom line, choosing not to move forward with your wedding because your guest count is limited is not the answer. Honey, when I tell you COVID showed me who my real friends were, COVID exposed them!!! The people that love you will want to show up come hell or high water. Pandemic or no pandemic. Chillleeeeeee!!!!!! COVID was a blessing honey!!!!!!!! So if you start seeing people fall away or show you their true colors during your wedding planning journey, let them!!!! This comes in handy when you tie the knot because you will have already eliminated the fake friends. It works wonders for a a brand new marriage…Trust me!!!! You want people around you are around you because they want to be, not because they feel like they have to be.
Reason #2: I Only Needed One.
While I never wanted a host of people around me at the altar, I did want to have my best friend Mecca of 13 years with me on from start to finish of my day. I say this to tell you to choose your guests and those you will have standing around you wisely. You don’t need and you won’t want a whole lot of people around you on the day of your wedding. While some weddings are simple, there are others that require those who love you to be around and no one else. You don’t need jealous people. You don’t need impatient people. You don’t need negative people. Trust me, one true blue friend will suffice as it did for me. Now if you wish to have a whole bunch of bridesmaids and groomsmen, that’s up to you, I’m just sharing what worked for us. We had my best friend and her husband and it was beautiful, fun and PEACEFUL!!! They kept us focused on what mattered and they also assisted us with remaining in a posture of prayer. With a sincere focus on Christ in their everyday lives, they kept worship music around us, answered our phone calls, answered our text messages, carried our stuff and served us hand and foot. They stood right by our side and this my friends, was exactly what we needed. I cannot stress it enough, one is enough. And like me, you might even find that, one is more than enough. Remember, if you don’t choose wisely, you’ll be forced to deal with unwanted attitudes and jealousy on your special day. Keep your circle small if you can. It will help you keep a clear head and maintain a low stress atmosphere. And if for some reason tears begin to fall, you’ll have the one who wipes them away instead of creating more. Trust me on this one.
Reason #3: Honeymoons Are Not About Locations.
So if you are anything like me, you had this illustrious honeymoon vacation planned ever since you said yes and there wasn’t a human who told you that you weren’t going to go. My husband’s plan was to surprise me and take me to one of the destinations on my vacation wish list. Like me, you probably had a list of exotic locations that you gave to your soon to be groom in hopes that he would pick one, sweep you off of your feet and simply take you there. But with COVID in the mix, your plans were completely annihilated. With borders closed and countries on lockdown, you, like me, were probably distraught. However, I chose to pick myself up and allow my now, husband, to come up with an alternative plan and surprise me with what happened to be the most beautiful honeymoon ever. So, if your honeymoon plans have been affected, just accept it for what it is and work around the challenges to make your once in a lifetime moment as special as you can make it. If God is in it, please understand that it will be beautiful no matter what and no matter where you are. The only thing you need on a honeymoon is each other.
Reason #4: I Refused To Be A Day Late.
While it is ultimately your choice as to whether you move forward with your wedding or not, it is my earnest desire to encourage you to move forward with what God had planned for your life this year if you are truly aware that God is in the midst and the foundation of your relationship. I refused to be one minute off from where God wanted me to be this year. He had plans for me. He had planned it from the beginning of time. Who was I to manipulate His plan? Trust me, you will be so grateful that you moved forward with what God set on your hearts to do. Besides, if your future husband still wants to move forward, following his lead is key girl!!! What we do not understand is that when God is leading a man to pursue you, there is a purpose and a plan in action. When we alter our plans, sometimes we can miss the mark and miss out on everything that God had in store for us. It is important to never be a millisecond off. God’s timing is always right no matter what the circumstances are. Walk forward in His timing and in His season for you. I don’t know about you, but I have been waiting for this moment my entire life!!! And just to think, I was at the brink of destiny that I am now walking in!! A lot of times, the enemy wants to distract us from walking in our destiny. So much so that he will do anything to keep us from walking in the right direction. So, square up sis and go claim what’s yours. I promise you will be so much better off for it!!! After all, this is the moment you have waited for for your entire life. This is the moment you prayed for. Don’t miss out sis!
Reason #5: I Was Surrounded By Godly Women.
COVID will only stop you if you let it. So, understand this, the women that absolutely adore you will be there for your Bridal Shower no matter what. They’ll be there for the rehearsal dinner. They’ll simply be fully present. They won’t be jealous. They won’t make up an excuse as to why they can’t come. They’ll be there. They’ll be happy. They’ll smile. They’ll laugh with you. They’ll enjoy every moment with you. They’ll tell you you’re beautiful and build you up every chance they get. Ladies, these are the women you need around you. They will come together and do special things for you. to include you have the Bridal shower of your dreams. My mother and best friend put on the most beautiful Bridal shower for me along with my aunts and my husband’s mother. It was epic and to live for! I was so blessed. My Bride tribe REFUSED to allow COVID to stop them and those are the type of people that make joyous occasions all the more sweeter. My Bridal shower was simply everything I had hoped it to be.
Reason #6: I Knew What I Wanted.
It’s all in what you make it. Outside or inside. On a roof or in the sand. Winter or Summer. Spring or Fall. Vera Wang or a local bridal boutique. It is totally up to you. Take your time to get a solid vision of what you want in your head. This will help streamline your venue searches as well as help you to avoid wasting money. At no point should you come out of your wedding ceremony with debt that you have to pay on for the rest of your life. My husband and I were determined to pay cash. FOR EVERYTHING. Create your vision and set a budget. Do your best to stick to your budget. If you ever find yourself going outside of your budget, ask yourself if you really need it. The wedding industry will make thousands of dollars off of you if you let it. Stay in control! Make it what you want and leave it at that. Whether it’s elaborate or simple, it is totally up to you. One thing I was not willing to go light on was my CAKE! For me, I saw my wedding cake (as well as my one of a kind Vera Wang dress and veil) as my “go hard” or “go home” detail. The cake is a statement that will speak for years, and you only get one shot! Everybody knows that when you make your way into the reception, the first thing that people are looking for is that cake. While flowers may be your “go hard” or “go home” detail, the cake was mine. And it was soooooo good!!! So what’s yours? What is it that you don’t feel you can negotiate on? Once you determine that, that’s half the battle! And one last thing. Be sure to have and keep your own vision in front of you. You will have many suggestions from a lot of people who mean you well and simply just want to help or perhaps even live vicariously through you. While they may just be trying to help you, sometimes, more often than not, they cause more stress than a little bit. Steer clear and remember it’s YOUR wedding, not theirs. YOUR DETAILS ARE FOR YOU, NOT THEM. Pick your own stuff. Make your own stuff. Make it fun. Make it you.
Reason #7: Dates Don’t Matter.
While I did send out my save the dates well in advance, there was a moment where I thought I was going to have to change the date..COVID19 is so unpredictable. For those of you who are able to still move forward with your venues, move forward. If your ceremony plans got shut down, simply find somewhere else to go and marry the love of your life. Tomorrow isn’t promised so live like it. Treat every single day as if it were your last. And if you don’t have to change the date, DON’T! Walk right on ahead and keep it moving. After all, you’ve got a man to marry!!! And should you encounter haters along the way, identify them and keep it moving. There’s plenty of people who wish to see your wedding plans fail amid this pandemic but don’t give them what they’re looking for. I cannot reiterate enough how elated we are that we went ahead and moved forward with our date. My husband and I don’t regret a thing. So if the government goes on lockdown again, a date is trivial in the grand scheme of things.
Know a 2020 Bride?
Do you know a 2020 Bride? If so, shout her out and tag her on our FB post and leave her an encouraging word!!! And guess what? We will too! Help us help a sista out!! Our shout out goes to Antonay Hughes soon to be Mrs. Hooks! Who’s your shout out? Take a moment to pick her up and give her some encouragement. Share this with her and let her know that God is in complete control. COVID just happened to happen during the year that God ordained for us to get married. So what will you do about it? Girl- keep your plans!!!! Forward progression is exactly what the devil doesn’t want you to do! If he can discourage you, he will. If you have questions about something or if you think you can help someone else, be sure to drop your COVID19 wedding woes below the post on our FB Page. I’m sure that it will help someone else. We’d love to hear how you over came your struggle.
Thank You Thank you for stopping by!! We are so elated to have all of you join us! And if you are a 2020 Bride, we congratulate you on your love story! Your love story is one of a kind so don’t ever try to compare it to anyone elses. Make it yours. Make it unique. Make it memorable. Remember, if you haven’t already followed and liked our page, please don’t forget to do so by tapping the FB link!!! LIke. Share. Comment. Message the page. Do you! And if you have a personal concern or question, please feel free to message the FB page! Our staff would love to hear from you and help you navigate some of those COVID19 Wedding challenges and woes. We thank God for all of you and hope that you stay tuned in and #GetPhreedUp!!!!
P.S. Got an epic love story that you think we might like to feature? Message the page, drop some photos and tell us all about it! We’d love for you to share your love story details!