I’m Getting Married: Where Do I Begin?

He’s proposed and you’ve accepted. Congratulations! You are going to be getting married, and this is an exciting time for you and your future husband-to-be. While spreading the wonderful news of your recent engagement, you have probably been asked every question in the book regarding your plans for the wedding: What are your colors? Have you picked a date? Am I invited? Meanwhile, you’re probably thinking to yourself, “I just got engaged, am I really supposed to have all these things planned already?” The answer is no. People often jump the gun when hearing about an engagement to the next step of the actual wedding ceremony rather than just congratulating you on the news of your engagement. You may be wondering when you have to start planning and what to do next; here are some ideas to help you begin the process of wedding planning and how to handle the many questions you are likely to be bombarded with.

Before you even begin to think about your dress, the date or anything to do with the wedding, stop and take time to enjoy your engagement. This is a very special time of celebration and excitement. You have a beautiful ring on your finger and a wonderful man who put everything out on the line to ask you to be his wife. Now is the time to enjoy the next step in your relationship and grow closer. Celebrate the new step by growing closer and spending more time together spreading the news of your engagement and enjoying the afterglow of the proposal. While it might not seem like an important thing to do, you’re definitely going to want to enjoy some down time before the wedding planning starts.

As part of enjoying the afterglow of the proposal, you don’t have to answer questions regarding you future wedding. You’ve probably already been asked a few questions and you may have a general idea of what you are looking for in your wedding but it’s OK to respond to questions about your wedding politely by saying, “I don’t know right now, I’m enjoying being engaged and that feeling is very exciting to me right now.” If people don’t respect that answer and press you further for details that you don’t have or care to give, it’s also appropriate to tell them you would rather not discuss the wedding and change the subject. While people think that it’s the next appropriate step after receiving a ring to immediately start planning the wedding, that’s not the case with most brides-to-be so don’t feel bad or ill prepared because you don’t have the answers to nosy questions that you haven’t even thought about what your wedding will be like. Luckily, most people will respect your answer not to discuss any wedding ideas or details yet and the conversation will probably steer to the amazing possibilities of marriage and the promising future that this engagement brings. Enjoying the engagement is the first step and knowing that you can take time to enjoy this new feeling is a welcome relief. In my case, my fiance and I agreed to just enjoy the first two months of being engaged before planning any part of the wedding and I am very glad that we did because it brought us closer and heightened the excitement of wedding planning. While I did think about the wedding, making this new step in our relationship my priority allowed me to enjoy it for all it was worth.

Even though we waited before starting to plan the wedding, I did have ideas regarding the wedding and I bought my fair share of wedding magazines. Before I decided anything though, I wanted to know what was important to me and what I really wanted out of my special day. I began planning my wedding with a list of wants. While they were very generic at first and included some childhood dreams but gradually these ideas became more focused and solid. Making this list also showed me what I did not want in my wedding and I made a separate list out to the side. While not exhaustive, these lists allowed me to make the most important decision I had to make about my wedding: what type of wedding that I wanted. While seemingly small, this decision would shape the rest of my wedding planning. Deciding what type of wedding you want is the first decision that you have to make in order to start planning the wedding. Whether your choice is traditional, contemporary, religious or any other type, this will shape the rest of your wedding planning. Knowing what you want out of your wedding is the first step in planning your wedding. After knowing the type of wedding you want, you can begin planning and the possibilities are endless.

Enjoying the engagement and then defining your wants for your wedding are the two best places to begin when planning your wedding. Taking time to savor the engagement reminds you to enjoy the wedding planning and focus on the most important part of the wedding: you and your fiance. Taking the time to know what you want out of your wedding by collecting your thoughts then provides you direction into the type of wedding you desire then how to begin the planning process. There is no correct way to plan a wedding. Don’t get caught up in the drama of feeling like you have to have all the answers figured out because just like life, you won’t have it all figured out. Some people can put together a wedding in six weeks and others need at least a year, knowing what you want for your wedding will give you a good idea of how long you are going to need to put this wedding together. Before you really start planning, remember that there are no rules to wedding planning and what works for you is what is perfect for you.

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