This post originally appeared as "Oy - The Pressha!" on our old blog, Born to be a Bride.
Getting married is absolutely beautiful, and planning your wedding is a true joy. It’s creative, filled with love, and of course, it brings plenty of feeding and drinking opportunities your way. But since “anxiety” is the highest clicked category on this blog, and since I definitely did not get through planning my own without hiccups, as you ALL know, I think it’s safe to admit to ourselves… planning a wedding can bring lots of pressure, too.
Here’s the good (bad?) news. It isn’t all because you’re planning a wedding. Yes, that’s what is happening on the surface. But the deep stuff, the real pressure, the things that are forcing you to cry about peonies not being in season or your venue not allowing space for a candy table? It’s bigger than all of that. It’s change. It’s growing up. It’s realizing that your family is now not your only family — you’re making a new one and merging two others in the process. Marrying Josh was the best decision I ever made in my life, but it wasn’t without loads of pressure being applied to both of us, from every angle.
Now that the wedding’s come and gone, everyday life is not without its pressured moments, too. Everyone wants to know when we’re going to have a baby (a topic I am purposely mum on, sorry). There were struggles at the holidays, there are confusing taxes to file, there are homes in three states and business ventures in four. Being married isn’t all about romance, though that’s the best part. It’s about a lot of other things too — logistics, money, family… the list goes on and on.
My mother gives very good advice at times when I am feeling the way I am currently feeling — overwhelmed. She tells me to “turn down the volume.” I constantly find myself turning down the volume these days, on people who are prying too deeply into Josh and my personal plans; well-meaning extended family members who poke their noses where they don’t belong; people who ask constantly when we are moving again and how I manage to adjust to the frequent moves; and work-related stress that tries to take up more space in our lives than it deserves.
Turning down the volume can mean deleting an email you just don’t need to deal with. It can mean looking a friend square in the eyes and telling her that you appreciate her advice, but you don’t plan to take it. Planning a wedding can bring on tons of pressure you just don’t need, and so can starting a life together. Turn down the volume on excess, external pressure, and turn it up on joy. Josh and I are spending lots of down time doing the things we enjoy, ignoring the haters, and avoiding plans we feel “obligated” to make but just don’t want to.
Above all else, you need to nurture your relationship with the man (or woman!) you intend to spend the rest of your life with. When all the peonies have dried up and the emails have been forgotten, the holidays reduced to memory and the table linens long discarded, you’ll be glad you turned up the volume on the words and smiles of the person who matters most.