I usually like to write about a particular wedding, a style, or something that can be useful to you, but today just feels different. I just recorded and posted a series of instagram stories, my usual babbling nonsense about what my week is looking like and how I am feeling, but I ended up deleting it (I’ve never done that, I don’t usually care what people think – it helps me to organise my thoughts and feel accountable). I think that today has a certain confusion about it. We are asking ourselves a series of questions like “how comfortable do I feel about hugging” and as I’m writing this Grimmy is talking on the radio about how ‘hugging is no longer illegal’…anyone else not able to get there heads around the fact that it ever was?!
So I’ve taken a little bit of time to reflect, and rather than babbling on my stories and it disappearing after 24 hours, I wanted to put a bit of a marker in the sand. Today is a big day for the wedding industry and we have been on quite the journey over the last 15 months.
As a lot of you will know – We celebrated both our Wedding and our first wedding anniversary in lockdown. I don’t say it as an accolade or as a request for pity (they really were celebrations) – it just is. Or was is probably more accurate. So I sit in a strange trinity of Seats:
I work in Events
I am a celebrant
I am a lockdown bride.
Now the first has meant that professionally my year was obliterated. We are also one of the sectors who were the least supported, but I will not make this forum my soap box.
The second in part I owe to the pandemic – in that is allowed me the time (mentally and physically) to undertake the training and become qualified to conduct not only weddings, but funerals, naming ceremonies and many other lovely services that I will tell you all about separately.
And thirdly…my wonderfully perfect micro wedding. Considering “they” say the first year of marriage is the hardest – I feel Adam and I have completed the Iron Man of year one marriage.
All of these things are making my personal journey out of lockdown pretty unique. And as I am sure we all feel a little unsteady on the walk back out into socialising and work, I am also navigating the ever changing world of events. Looking around my peers to see who survived, and how they pivoted. I am having evening outdoor meet ups with ladies who would have been my bridesmaids – but never could. Gosh, I have even met 3 people who hadn’t been born on my wedding day. I am spending my days meeting couples who are in some cases on their 4th wedding date. And those who found love in lockdown.
The majority of the time I feel immense joy, pride and admiration for the amazing people who I will stand shoulder to shoulder with as events return to capacity. I have compassion for the couples who felt they lost their dream day, and hope that we can restore those feelings. I feel comfort in returning to my ‘office’ (that’s usually a gorgeous barn, classic marquee or unique yurt) and excitement for actually enjoying my home again- or perhaps more realistically, being in it very rarely!
But I also feel overwhelmed. It was a monstrous thing that happened (will it ever really feel past tense?), we will all have to process the time we have lost. Recently, I finally showed a friend the you tube film that our guests made for us when they realised they would not be attending a wedding. If you listen to the phrases – it just shows how little we realised what we were in for...
“can’t wait to do this properly when these shenanigans are over”
“see you in the summer when we can do this properly”
Looking back – I am glad we didn’t know. I suspect it would have been much worse without the hope we had then. So whilst we think about what has been and what is to come – I want to say again – I am here! To talk weddings, to talk funerals, to talk venues and altering your plans or just how the devil are you taking the steps back into the life you used to lead.
Professionally and Personally – Please reach out if you want to talk. I know I do… and if you didn’t know, I love a good chat!
With love and continued hope,