When time was ticking down to my brother’s wedding, and something threatened to go sideways, he’d say “can I just give you a thousand dollars?” That makes my brother sound reckless or douchey and he’s neither. He was a man beating a clock, hoping some Benjamins could keep trouble at bay.

There are 39 days until my own wedding and the temptation to start throwing money at problems is very real. What’s stopping me? You’d think it would be my bank account, but actually it’s my girlfriend.

I’ve delegated a few things to her that were driving me insane. Like table rentals. Why is it so hard for me to deal with table rentals? I do not know. But after weeks of procrastination, I asked if she could take that off my plate. She’s doing the smart thing … shopping around, getting estimates. And whenever she asks for my opinion, I ask if we can just give someone a thousand dollars.

Two people who deserve a thousand dollars are the cousin and aunt who threw me a completely fantastic bridal shower. I will admit, the concept of a “bridal shower” unnerved me a little, because one thing I’ve confronted (or maybe it’s confronted me) during this wedding planning process is the concept of femininity. I’ve never felt less feminine than when I was trying on wedding dresses or playing with veils. I asked my girlfriend the other day if she thinks of me as feminine, and she laughed out loud. “Uh, yes” was her official answer. I wear make-up everyday. I cook and I sew (and knit and crochet and scrapbook). I decorate our home. I love getting my nails done. So I can see why my girlfriend thought “am I feminine” was a weird thing for me to ask. But still, I don’t always think of myself as very feminine.

Out-of-place is what I worried I’d feel at my shower, because of this whole question of femininity, but I was in good hands with my aunt and cousin. The party started with a private cooking lesson where we learned to make eggs benedict, strawberry shortcake, roasted asparagus and crispy potatoes. Then we all sat down together and enjoyed our brunch. Brunch is the best IMHO, and for a time I worked as a pastry chef, so the concept of the party fit me perfectly. The cooking lesson was a great ice breaker and bonding activity, and the decorations were so freaking cute–from the gorgeous flowers to the hand-painted cooking utensils they gave as favors to the pictures of me and my girlfriend they’d made into a banner.

It was as full of love and thoughtfulness as it could possibly have been and I’m sad it’s over. For the last month or so, I’ve had three invitations on the fridge: Bridal Shower, Rehearsal Dinner, Wedding. Now one third of those momentous occasions has passed. The other two aren’t very far away and as often as I find myself thinking “can it please just be here already”, I know there’s going to be a period of let-down after the wedding.

In 2014, after a year of planning, my girlfriend and I went to the Europe and the UK for two weeks. It was our first international travel together and it was an incredible trip. We came back home full of memories, but after our bags were unpacked we both felt melancholy. This big thing that had taken so much time and attention had come and gone and we couldn’t go back to the beginning and do it again. It was over, and we were both caught off guard by how sad that made us. We started planning another trip to help pull us out of the funk.

But if we feel that same melancholy after the wedding, we can’t just start planning the next one. If I give you a thousand dollars, can you solve that problem for me?

 

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