A covid wedding fairy tale

‘COVID IS RUINING MY LIFE’.
– Me. Every single day in the 6 months before our wedding. I’m a little dramatic, I’ll admit. But honestly, you couldn’t possibly understand the sh*t storm that was my wedding planning unless you too, were (or are going to be) a Covid Bride.

It’s supposed to be an exciting time. Getting married is such a milestone in your lives. Yet my now husband and I were so over it that we were literally longing for it to be over so we could just get back to normal life. Life without the stress I felt every morning watching the news to see if the borders had locked my family out or if our wedding had to be postponed. At one point, when our venue told us that they couldn’t host our entire guest list and that we had to cut it in HALF to continue with the wedding there – three weeks out from the wedding day, I actually told my husband that I didn’t want to do it. Let’s can it. Go to the registry. I don’t care. I don’t want it anymore. I am done. Thankfully, he didn’t give up. He took the lead in organising a new venue and alas, here we sit as Mr & Mrs.

When the day finally came, I felt normal… Not like I was about to get married. But more in the mindset that something could go wrong. I didn’t let myself feel excited because I was so scared of being disappointed if we had to cancel at the last minute. You see, my Dad, sisters, MOH, bridesmaids etc were interstate. And if the borders closed – even if 7 days out from the wedding, I didn’t want to proceed. So I woke up each morning, ran to the news channel and held my breath while the media reported xx new cases from the correction center outbreak. I cried to Dad on the phone numerous times. The florist, photographer, caterer, venue, DJ etc all wanted money from us (understandably) but we couldn’t pay until the very last minute and so it just felt like it was all a bit too much at the time. I got so stressed out that I had a full-on anxiety attack on the way to collect my little sister from the airport (who had arrived two weeks before the wedding to help me prep and to make sure she could be at the hens), and had to turn around and come home without her. I thought I’d had a stroke…. We laugh now, but it wasn’t funny at the time. The Doctor told me I need to get some sleep and relax. I literally laughed at him while I cuddled my screaming teething 12 month old and fought my 2.5 year old daughter about not getting out of her pram for the 17th time that hour. Things turned around though, after this.

I had my two sisters here from QLD and felt a little bit reassured that they had made it here and so my parents should too (they were flying in a few days later). I was very aware of the moments I started feeling stressed out, as were my sisters and fiance, and between the four of us, we managed to keep my stress levels down… As much as was possible anyway! Dad arrived at 11.30pm the night before our wedding (talk about leaving it to the last minute – men hey!!) and that was when my body really rested. Well, that is until I found out my fiance was drunk as a skunk (FFS… must you!!?) and I started imagining him rolling up hungover and sick…. Nonetheless, I was relieved.

I slept a total of 2 hours that night. Woke up feeling refreshed AF. Not. But the wedding day was here and we just had to make it to 4pm then we’d be done! Married! I felt normal all day long, sipping rose out of my ‘bride’ glass with my special robe on… My hair was done then my make up was done, then I was dressed and Dad arrived to pick us up. Before I knew it, I was at the venue waiting to walk down the aisle. I saw Justin through the glass window and as I started walking towards him, arms linked with Dad, I started sobbing. I really need a god damn tissue but not a single staff member in the place had one. Alas, Dad came to the rescue, stopped me from walking any further and reminded me to take a breath. It took me about 20 seconds to regain my composure, then we agreed that I was ready and walked down to meet Justin. I saw him at the end of the aisle holding Taylor, and couldn’t even see his face. Why he was holding her was beyond me, but when we made it to him, I saw that he was crying. He was using our little girl as a cover up, because his emotions got the better of him. Cute, right? Still gives me goosebumps when I think back to this exact moment.

The ceremony was beautiful. Justin cried more than I did (but don’t tell him I told you). We couldn’t have been more in the moment if we tried. We forgot everyone watching, read our vows and became husband and wife. All the build up. All the stress and angst… for this one moment. This was all that mattered. Officially becoming the Chandler family. No longer having to book Doctor’s appointments with a separate surname to my children anymore (not that it’s a huge deal, but I felt a teeny bit judged every time the Doctor’s receptionist would ask ‘and does Taylor/Brodie have the same surname as you?’.) The point is, we were MARRIED AF GUYS!

Lots of things went wrong in our wedding planning. A last minute venue change as I mentioned, perfect sunny weather 2 days before the wedding but pouring rain and freezing cold weather the day of… Which meant our ceremony wasn’t in front of the beautiful vineyards anymore, but rather inside the reception area with everyone seated at their tables. The no-dancing rule was officially implemented (although our new venue promised us she had a Covid police officer friend who told her you could dance and drink so long as you don’t take a drink on the dance floor… only to tell us the day before our wedding that this information was incorrect and in fact we cannot dance AT ALL. No response to any of my messages after that… so it’s obvious she had just told us what we wanted to hear to get our business, but once again, we don’t really care because we are married now and, well, why dwell on crap you can’t change?). I was so happy with the turn out. All our fave people with us. We all had such a good time and I just felt pure joy. Even the next day, when I woke up hungover and saw the disgrace that was my wedding dress (the train was torn and covered in mud…)… it was still the perfect day.

If you are a covid bride-to-be, let me reassure you that you will get your perfect day. The universe has your back, and in the end, it will make sure of it.

Signed, Mrs Chandler xx (hehe)

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