Nobody Remembers Your Wedding
Wow. Look at that title, what a way to start a blog post.
Let me try to reduce the size of the flame here. I’m not saying that they don’t remember your wedding like it doesn't exist. I’m just saying that they don’t remember your wedding the way that you thought they would remember it.
You can ask them and find out:
- Do they remember what you wore that day?
- Do they remember the food you served?
- Do they remember the color theme you chose?
- Do they remember the decorations you set up?
- Do they remember the name of your partner? <--- my favourite :p
Or, try this: Have your photo album be ready a few weeks after the wedding, sit down with your family, and flip through the pages. See how much they actually remember. Even the actual bride and groom don't remember some of the things that were in their own wedding (speaking from experience here).
People who have other better things to do don't tend to remember specific physical details, the kind of details that we like to focus our attention to. I mean, months of discussions (maybe arguments) that went on about these physical details - things that we thought people would notice, remember, and talk about for days, weeks, months, or even years to come.
This is understandable. We would like to think that we are somehow at the center of people’s attention. We think that when we walk around in a crowd that other people are constantly thinking about (and judging) us. That’s probably why we keep on asking that nagging question:
What would people think about me if I do or don’t do this?
That question bugs us so much that it can dictate a huge chunk of our lives. Because we think that people are constantly thinking about us, so we constantly worry about the image we display, in the hopes that the image is in line with what they expect.
We can apply this to many situations in life, but I can’t think of a situation where this thing gets really severe other than weddings. We worry so much about what people say about our wedding and we think that if we do it “badly” (whatever that means), people are going to talk about it for generations to come.
As if there's a TripAdvisor review page about weddings (Oh God, I sure hope that there isn't such a thing!)
This is not to say that we should not care at all about what people say and that we should just organize our wedding however we please. Cultural norms have their place, no doubt about it. What is being raised here is the issue of obsession about what people "might" say up to a point where the people start to interfere with our lives and our principles.
If people say, “Hey, you shouldn’t smoke. It’s bad for your health.” That’s a good thing, you should listen to what people say. But if people say, “Hey, you should have a big fat wedding even if you can’t afford it because it’s a one-time thing and other people are doing it.” Now, that is something else entirely.
There are many things in life that we shouldn't compare with others, simply because we all live different lives. If you feel pressured to conform to an unrealistic, unnecessary, and unfair standard of what a wedding should be, then you should probably stop comparing.
On one hand, you know you can't afford it. On the other hand, your worry about what others might say about your wedding is most probably just a thing in your head. Nothing more. Although we like to believe that we are the center of people's attention, the fact of the matter is that people are generally too busy thinking about themselves.
That's not because they're selfish. That's because they're human. You are too busy thinking about yourself too, which is probably why you are popping that vein on your forehead thinking about how to best display yourself on your wedding. You believe that everyone will stay focus on your image and that they will remember it forever.
But allow me to tell you what people will actually remember: Feelings. They remember that your wedding was a happy occasion and they remember that they were celebrating you and your partner (despite the fact that they might forget his or her name).
Instead of focusing too much on price tags, brand names and reputations, just focus on having a happy wedding occasion; where family and friends gather around to celebrate your blessed union and pray for your well-being.
At the end of the day, that is what wedding should be about. To achieve that end, you don't have to break the bank. You can definitely work with what you have to organize a nice, decent wedding and have enough money left to start off your marriage (which is, by the way, more important than a one-day wedding).
But what about people? Undeniably, even after reading this blog post until this point, there will still be people who will worry about people's perceptions. Again, that's understandable. Realistically speaking, in our lives there will be people who will focus too much on the small physical details and chances are, these are the people who are driving you crazy.
Nevertheless, try to remember that you don't have to go out of your way to have a lavish wedding and spend years of your marriage life paying for one day of wedding - just to please people who might not care about you.
How do I know that? Because people who actually care about you will realize that your happiness is worth more than a wedding you can't afford.