(photo by Byerly Photography (me!) www.byerlyphotography.weebly.com)
I titled my entire blog "Bits & Pieces" because that's what I imagined it would be filled with: bits and pieces of advice, motivation, photos, stories, etc. So here's a bit of advice from me, a bride, in regards to 'wedding tradition' that might help other brides out there.
I've had my wedding planned since about 2 days before I was born so planning everything has been fairly easy because I knew exactly what I (we?) wanted. I never realized I would have as traditional of a wedding that we currently have planned. I don't consider myself much of a religious person but it was so important to have our ceremony in a church. I also never dreamed of seeing each other before actual wedding ceremony.. until I started making a timeline of the day and entertaining the thought for organization and time saving purposes. I gave myself a cold sore from stressing about seeing each other before the ceremony or not.
Well, I can't believe Im saying it but:
We're Breaking Tradition And Seeing Each Other Before The Ceremony! :D
I'm sure this is something a lot of brides consider over and over and probably stress about making that decision. So I thought I would lend my advice and the reasonings as to why we made the decision we did to hopefully help other brides out there. I'm surprisingly at peace with our decision and already know it's the right choice for us. I know it's not the right choice or even thought for a lot of couples but if you're considering it and can't decide here's what I think:
I was originally worried our ceremony wouldn't be the same if he didn't have some sweet, romantic reaction when I waked in, but I now really think his reaction to seeing me is such a personal, private moment that should be shared between the two of us. In a way for me, kind of like the birth of a child- such a beautiful, unique moment that will only happen one time it should be shared between the parents. Hopefully that makes sense to you like it made sense and helped me.
What's the only important part of the ceremony? To me, The Vows. Period. I could show up wearing jeans and a Helly Kitty Tshirt and it wouldn't matter as long as the vows were read. I mean, it would kind of matter because I have a beautiful wedding dress I want to wear, but you get my point ;) Realizing that the ceremony should be about your commitment and your future together and a promise to never give up on your love is what made the decision for me. It's not about the way he looks at me or if he's already seen me because I know him already seeing me is not taking away from the importance of the ceremony. I wish I would have realized this sooner because it's absolutely what sealed the decision for me. I know I'll never look back on our wedding and think 'damn, our ceremony was ruined because he saw me before it.' or 'damn, there was nothing special about the ceremony since he had already seen me.' C'mon now.
The only reason I began to even entertained the thought of seeing each other before the ceremony was because of how much I thought it would help the day stay organized and efficient on time. I'm positive it absolutely will. Seeing each other before the ceremony will allow us to get our photos done early, which I think our photos will turn out even better than if we do them after because we'll be more relaxed and not rushed to get to the reception. We also plan to stop at our reception site together before the ceremony so we can see it all decked out before the guests are there and 'ruin' the linens and decor.
Another point that really helped me decide: the entire day we will be surrounded by family and friends (which is fantastic!) but it's our wedding day and we should have some time during the day to just the two of us. Everybody will be watching our vows, our first kiss as Mr & Mrs, our first dance, etc. that it was so important to have a few moments together, alone. And yes, even without our photographer in our face for just a bit.
I went from 'oh hell no would I break tradition and see each other before the ceremony' to 'ohh our day is going to be so much more relaxed knowing we'll see each other beforehand.' and the points I listed above completely set my decision and helped me feel so relaxed knowing we're doing the right thing. If you're a bride having a hard time deciding, I hope this helped you <3