The Bridezilla Antidote
For the past few months I have been scrambling to collect information about wedding related vendors and venues.I am the oldest of three siblings (my siblings are 14 and 10 years old), the oldest within my mom's extended family, and the second one to be planning a wedding within my dad's extended family. Not to mention, I am the first one to even think about getting married within my group of friends. Naturally, I have very little resources and or people to ask or consult. I had absolutely no clue on how to decide on anything - not surprising considering how bad I am in making major decisions. I inquired, compared prices, talked to (what seems like) a million people. Okay maybe not a million.. maybe more like hundreds. Still enough to give me sore thumbs.
I already did a post last time (here) about what I learned from wedding planning, but I felt the need to jot down a few more things. I don't like telling people what to do, but I love sharing my experiences with other people. I hope that some of these decisions of mine could add perspective to your current, or future, wedding or event preparations! :)
1. I stopped browsing.
I spent months browsing Instagram, Pinterest, Facebook, Google and all sorts of wedding publications to search for inspiration and wedding vendors. After a while I got overwhelmed. There are so many wedding vendors, how am I supposed to choose just one?! There are so many themes that I could pursue, which one should I go with? I stopped myself in the middle of my bridezilla moment to reflect. I asked myself about what I wanted my wedding to be like. More importantly, I asked SEAN (dang, almost forgot about the groom in the midst of all this planning.. so sad) what he wanted. I thought about the kind of people that we are. Are we the kind of people who love lavish weddings? Simple weddings? There's no right or wrong answer. Whether you use one truck load of flowers, or one vase, it really doesn't matter as long as you're happy with your decision. Browsing is good to help you get started, but after a while make sure to TRYYYYY to stop yourself from browsing more. Just put your phone down. Trust me, it will only confuse you! Stick with a couple of themes and or vendors, and choose one that you like. Only browse more if you decide that your first batch of selections don't match your style or budget.
2. I stopped comparing.
There's a saying in Indonesian that says "ada langit diatas langit", in literal translation: there's a sky above the sky. Someone's gonna have a better wedding than me and a more unique wedding concept than me. I sucked all that up and stopped giving a cornflake about what other people are/were doing. No, this does not come easy especially with social media. I browse my Instagram for 5 minutes and then its like.. DAANNGGG this friend of mine is getting married in this SEVEN STAR HOTEL!!. And then I go.. OK OK I gotta stop. I'm thankful that I can even have a celebration to begin with. Being thankful for what I have is a daily decision that I must consciously make. No matter how this one night event turns out to be, I am grateful that I will be able to spend the rest of my life with my best friend :)
3. I made my wedding personal
Commercial stuff is good. Factory produced things are convenient. But I decided to not overlook personal touches. Because after all, handmade things are one of a kind and irreplaceable.. there's no duplicate for handmade things! I'm not advising anyone to have a completely DIY wedding because that would cause too much stress and work, but I think it's important to make your wedding yours instead of copying what other couples have done before. I am working to ensure that I don't follow a template, and that if I do follow it, it's because I really want to. A lot of vendors often do follow a template from previous weddings or events that they have done.. which connects me to my next point:
4. I selected my vendors carefully
The most famous vendors are not always the best ones for you. This is a no brainer for Americans, but apparently it's not for many Indonesians. Many of the vendors that I contacted were so famous and in such high demand that they weren't concerned about their customers anymore. At one point I felt so sick of how I was being treated that I decided to be purposeful in choosing what I choose for my wedding. I decided that I will only support vendors who value the things that I do. I won't choose based on popularity. I value vendors who are proactive about their tasks. I don't value vendors who only do what they are told to - after all, I am hiring these vendors for their creativity and ideas, not only for their labor! I have witnessed people who are so willing to be mistreated in return for obtaining a famous vendor's service. Think untimely responses, missed timelines and rude responses, amongst other things. These are the last thing that a bride to be needs!
5. I asked why
I came into this planning with the mindset of wanting to get the best of everything. Natural, of course, considering that we are spending a significant amount of money on this once in a lifetime event. I wanted that dress designer that everyone used, I wanted that venue that everyone talks about. This time I had to ask myself why. Why am I making the decisions that I am making? I often surprise myself with my own answers. I'm often embarrassed with my own answers! Whenever I start feeling uneasy about my answers, I know that I'm doing something wrong - I'm not making the wisest decision for myself.
I think Sean can testify to how much more relaxed I am after doing all of the things above. I seldom talk about weddings anymore and only talk about it when I have to. I have more confidence in my vendors. I am happy with the things that I am choosing. That kind of peace of mind is priceless and I won't trade it for anything else in the world. I think my trick was to look in instead of look out, to pay more attention to what Sean and I want or need than to whatever opinion or trend is going on out there. Lastly, I committed to adhere by Emma Watson's advice: "don't feel stupid if you don't like what everyone else pretends to love".
I hope that you'll be able to experience the same peace of mind no matter what you are planning!