Wedding Wisdom

Dearest Bride,

There is a quote from Victorian-era Englishman John Ruskin that I love: When love and skill work together, expect a masterpiece.

There is a lot of work that goes into planning a wedding. It’s a lot more than just organizing people, places and things. For you, it is a life-changing rite of passage, a time to discover the essence of the woman you want to be, and to share that with your beloved.

There will be things that come up – with your family, your friends (especially your bridesmaids), your intended (he’s going through a huge change in lifestyle, also) and your vendors.

You only get one mother, and whatever your situation may be—divorce, estrangement, etc.—this is the woman who brought you into this world. Now that you’re ready to leave and start your own home, it’s a lot for her to take in. Take some time, be patient and be loving. There are girls who have lost their mothers way too early, and would give a million dollars just to have their moms around to help them plan their wedding.

Your bridesmaids usually are young women. Like yourself, they have lives, money problems, time constraints, and emotional highs and lows regarding your wedding. Remember, you are not the only person in the world to be a bride. Consider what you’re asking of them. Temper any requests by reversing the situation in your mind: What if she was the bride and you were the bridesmaid?

Expecting another busy young woman to be at your beck and call is ridiculous. Five bridal showers? Two-hour hair and make-up services at $150 a pop? These are young women who hopefully will be your lifelong friends. Be considerate, and give them your love and friendship.

Finally, your purveyors: They are not magicians, nor are they mind-readers. No one would ever do anything purposely to offend you or do something you did not approve of. No one is out to sabotage you, or make your wedding less than the best it can be.

Vendors have no control over the weather. If it’s freezing in April or pouring rain in July, it’s not their fault. They love their jobs and a part of that love is to please you. Most vendors are dedicated professionals and they have feelings. Treat them with the respect you would want for yourself.

This is one of your first opportunities to shape the essence of the woman you are to become. Who doesn’t want to be lovely and worthy of love? Who doesn’t want to be a patient, understanding, caring friend (or daughter)? You can’t always control how you feel, but you can control how you act. If you act like a woman of grace, chances are, that is the woman you’ll become.

Never forget, everyone involved in your wedding wants to please you.

I wish you a lifetime of happiness, and I personally would do everything I can to make sure your wedding day is the starting point of that happiness.

With all good wishes,

John Sullivan

Wedding expert John Sullivan has a fine arts degree from Kansas City Art Institute. He has worked with partner Ken Miesner for 30-plus years at Ken Miesner's Flowers at 292 Plaza Frontenac, where they have done flowers for some 1,200 weddings! "Like" him on Facebook under "Wedding Wisdom," where guests are welcome to post pictures, and leave comments and opinions.

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