Image by Sophie May
Getting married without a loved one being there
I believe this will resonate with you (and others I’m sure) if you have lost someone special and are wondering how you will navigate your wedding planning, and your wedding day getting married without a loved one being there.
With so many things to organise, think about and often worry about, this is a subject that is impossible to put to the back of your mind if you are affected by this situation. There is no specific answer to this that will work for everyone. However, there are some things you can do to be kinder to yourself, and making your wedding planning and wedding day a little easier. Let me explain why I know about this particular subject.
I planned my own wedding day without loved ones.
When I was getting married I had already lost both my parents and 3 of my grandparents. I was in my 20’s and had no male member of the family that I could ask to walk me (traditionally) down the aisle, give me away, or guide me through the wedding process. My future husband had an army of a family, and I simply had my sister, grandmother and aunt.
I spent many hours thinking about how I wanted my day to look. I looked through endless magazines, I went to other people’s weddings, and watched lots of tv shows that all told me how my wedding day should look. The problem was that I didn’t fit into any of those boxes. I wouldn’t have enough family to fill one side of the church. I wouldn’t have enough family to sit next to me at the top table, and there would be no ‘mother of the bride’ to help me through all the wedding planning. There was no advice out there. And actually, there still isn’t a lot.
So, what can help you navigate your wedding day without you loved ones?
First of all, it is easy to get taken along with what everyone else says. Trying to satisfy everyone. But lets remember why you are getting married. You want to spend the rest of your life with your partner. Your wedding planning, and wedding day is a very important and meaningful experience that will stay with you forever. You and your partner are the only ones that need to be happy with your wedding day choices.
So really, nothing anyone else says really matters if you aren’t feeling it. The only thing that matters is what sits well, and feels right for you (and your partner). There were a few things that I did to satisfy those people with the loudest voices that told me how I should do things – that I wish I hadn’t. But there were some things I did that I chose to do for me, ignoring those voices. Things I needed to do to help me get through the planning and the day without those loved ones – and I’m so glad I did. You will be too.
Incorporate a special sentimental gift into your wedding from a lost loved one
you have an inner voice for a reason. Listen to it.
ALWAYS listen to your inner voice. Yes, you… you introverted, or quiet, or people pleasing, people. Make time now, to sit for a moment and think about how you want to feel on the day. If you need something there to remind you of that special person, then think about what you’d like to have with you. If you want to talk about someone, consider adding a little heartfelt speech to the order. If you are introverted and want to keep these special moments to yourself, then work in some time to go off by yourself to have that moment where you can indulge your sentimental thoughts.
There is no wrong way.
Know that there is no ‘wrong’ way to do it. My sister walked me down the aisle, and did a speech before the wedding breakfast. She focused on us as siblings, and celebrated all the women in our lives.
My best friend was my only bridesmaid. And I kept her close knowing that if I needed her she would be there.
And we didn’t have a first dance. With only a couple of family members to cry happy tears, I did not want to be centre of attention.
I chose mismatched inherited and borrowed wedding jewellery because I wanted something of my mother and my grandmother with me. And I felt so much better for all those decisions. And when I look back I realise that is part of what makes my wedding so unique to me.
So if you are getting married, and you don’t know how to feel, or how to remember your loved ones on your special day, then please do get in touch. I have so many ideas, and I’d love to help you.
some other ways to remember your loved ones on your wedding day
“When someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure.”