Thursday, 23 February 2017

Dealing With Nerves On My Wedding Day



I've suffered with anxiety for many years, but I've learnt to manage it, so generally it isn't a problem (most of the time). And if there's ever a time that it could be a problem I try to put measures in place to reduce or eliminate the possible anxiety. My anxiety can be triggered by extra stress, worry, or from social settings. When it came to organising my wedding I knew this was a time that I had to put measures in place to help reduce that anxiety. I didn't think I'd be able to completely eliminate it, but that was fine, just reducing it would help towards me enjoying the day. After all if a bride and groom can't enjoy their wedding day what are we planning it for?

We can't always know when anxiety will trigger, or what will trigger it, but I've had enough experience with what can trigger it to know some of the measures to put into place. Here are some of the ways I helped reduce the possibility of anxiety taking over me on one of the most important and special days of my life.

No head table. I chose not to have a head table, there was just a small table for Keith and I. I had originally wanted it set to the side so I really wasn't centre of attention, but it was set out without me present and when I saw the set up I did agree it looked better central to the room. My other reason for not having a head table was because I didn't want the formality of a head table. I wanted a more informal day where people felt free to come over to speak to me. This is just what I personally wanted, I do think head tables can look great, but going with what I felt more comfortable with was going to help me to be far more relaxed





Informal wedding theme. Talking about keeping things informal, we chose a wedding theme that was very informal, but still keeping it special for a wedding. We decided to go with a buffet lunch and to tie it into a theme we chose a picnic theme. Originally we were going to head outside onto the grass for a picnic and even instructed our guests to bring picnic blankets with them. I wanted people to be able to mix with everyone and not have specific seats assigned. I didn't want the room full of tables and chairs, not being able to feel free to move around the room. Anxiety can be caused from small spaces and feeling confined.




Well we had typical British weather and it rained (heavy) the day we got married. And although by time we were at our reception the rain had gone, the ground was wet and no one would want to sit outside in their frocks. Although I knew the day before that there was a high possibility that it would rain, I decided to leave things in our reception hall as we'd planned. Apart from our table we only set up 4 tables with around 50 chairs set out in semi circles around the tables.We had at least twice as many guests attending than chairs set out. But I really didn't want the room to be confined by all those tables and chairs, so we stuck with are plans. And those that were able to, placed their blankets on the floor of the room and we had an indoor picnic.


A separate venue for ceremony and reception.  Where we chose to get married we had the option of also having our reception there. But I knew I wanted and needed a break from all our guests between being married and arriving at our reception. So we opted for 2 venues. This way Keith and I had a few minutes to ourselves. I was happy to have all those guests at our wedding, but half were Keith's guests and I either didn't know them or didn't know them well. Of course I was happy for Keith to have guests, but meeting new people can be the cause of social anxiety. Having some time away from everyone on a day where everyone wants to meet you and congratulate you was an absolute must! We were also able to tie in having our official photos taken on route to our reception. This way we were neither on show having our photos taken or being pressured by others to hurry along. I'd arranged some snacks and drinks on arrival and some fun activities for our guests, so they would all be fine.

There was one other thing that we did that was completely against all tradition, but something I'm so pleased I did. And if I did it over again I would definitely do again. I may slightly change how it went, but that's down to giving proper instruction.

Some time before getting married I came across an article online all about first look photos. It's certainly not the traditional way of doing things, but gave me food for thought and an alternative way of doing things. I'm not one for being the centre of attention and the thought of having over 100 people stare at me as I walked down the aisle put dread in me. I needed to find a way of being able to calm my nerves so that I didn't become too overwhelmed by the day.

I thought if I could see my soon to be husband in front of a few of our nearest and dearest before walking down the aisle I wouldn't be so nervous. Plus the rules in the church we were getting married in stopped us from having photos taken throughout the wedding ceremony. We wanted to be able to capture the moment we first saw each other the morning of our wedding day. So we opted to have a first look photo session. The only other people who we planned to have with us were my bridesmaids (apart from the 2 youngest) and the best man and grooms men.

Having first look photos did mean we had to be ready quite a bit earlier than necessary, but there was no rush to leave for the church. We had photos taken of us seeing each other for the first time, with all our bridesmaids, best man and grooms men and were able to be relaxed. Once the men had left for the church I had some photos with the girls.

Here are the results!

1 comment:

  1. Great tips and what lovely photos - you looked stunning!

    ReplyDelete

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