All you need is love and … a great wedding ceremony.
“It doesn’t really matter” “Don’t make it too long, I don’t want the guests to get bored” “It’s not the most important part of the day” “Just make it short, so we can start drinking”
All statements I’ve heard or seen when talking about planning the actual wedding ceremony. Which kind of breaks my heart a little bit every time. Now I’ve said this before, and, I may be slightly biased based on the fact that I’m a celebrant and am lucky enough to help couples on their wedding planning journey. But time and time again I hear about people who have the entire wedding planned out, either in real life or on Pinterest, but have not had a single thought about the actual ceremony. And to a degree I get that. Often when I meet couples we establish that they are in the camp of “we’ve never done this before and we don’t know what we’re doing” and that’s cool, because that is where a awesome celebrant will hold your hand (figuratively, not actually, well maybe if you’re really nervous) and explain the options and the process and the importance of your wedding ceremony.
Your wedding ceremony should set the tone for your entire wedding day. It is in fact the party starter. Way back in the day, wedding ceremonies had to follow a certain script, and they were all pretty much the same. You said exactly what the officiant wrote for you. I can imagine that not a lot of brides and grooms can even remember what they said to each other. But times have changed, big time. Couples have so much more say in what they want to include as part of their ceremony, and I for one am excited about this. There are so many different ways you can structure your ceremony, and so many different elements you can include. It definitely gives a couple more control and choice to help their celebrant create their perfect ceremony. If you are serious and believe that a wedding should be a restrained and solemn occasion and want a ceremony that reflects that, then great, you can absolutely have that, and you need to choose a celebrant who can deliver that. If the two of you have any interesting, quirky or fun elements to your relationship then I believe it is your responsibility and right to roll in that direction. A ceremony should reflect your different personalities and your relationship together. I believe if you do not have a ceremony that reflects you two together then you are doing a dis-service to your guests, and to yourselves. You do not want your guests to walk away from your ceremony thinking “what on earth was that. I don’t even know who the celebrant was talking about!” So in saying that no two wedding ceremonies should be the same, (except for the legal parts that have to be done) and if your celebrant is just going to ‘cut and paste’ your ceremony then find another celebrant. You, your guests and your love deserve a personalised and original wedding ceremony.
Yes I understand the wedding ceremony, can be uncomfortable, and for most people it is the most nerve-wracking part of the day. Of course it’s not everyday that you share a piece of your heart with your loved one and your friends and family. And I know that public speaking is not every-ones cup of tea. But in saying that how many times in your life will you be able to make such a grand gesture and acknowledge all the reasons you love your partner and share your promises for the future, to them, and your friends and family? I believe it’s an extremely memorable and emotional act of love, and should be treated as such.
Yes wedding planning can be fun. It can be so exciting to choose the dress and the colours, and the table decorations and share the experience with your girlfriends or your mum. I also know for some people (mainly brides) it can become all consuming. It can literally take over your life. It is also really easy for a couple to lose sight of what the day is really about. It is about celebrating your love story.
When you are getting married you are committing to your loved one for the rest of your lives. You are making declarations to each other in front of your family and friends that you will love each other, despite the fact that she wears leopard print a little too much, and he always leaves his shoes in the middle of the doorway. You are becoming a team, where you know the other person will always have your back. And if that is not worth focusing on and totally celebrating then I don’t know what is!