Remember when Ocelot struggled with being “bridal enough” when it came to her wedding gown? She's back with another eye-opening (and all too common) struggle — the venue search.
The venue search has been one of the biggest learning experiences about myself. It took me a while to get over my grand dreams of an elaborate fancy black-tie affair in a posh museum. I had a lot to learn about how inflated my expectations were, even though I previously considered myself immune to the hypnotic bridal magazine photos of “real” weddings that had been staged to the micron. I also learned I am very frugal and this shit just ain't cheap!
I feel like I've overcome a big obstruction — my own over-inflated need for perfection.
I shed a lot of tears in the process. Between a money drought, moving several times and bad luck like a freakin' curse, I was not set up for easy success in the first place. However, the largest hurdle was overcoming these inflated notions I had of what the “average” couple was capable of achieving from various wedding pushers, like magazines and TV shows. Much of what I expected to achieve was not affordable for us. Many venues I liked best were just too far outside our price limit. There were unexpected costs like chair rental and sneaky “wedding taxes” too. I couldn't believe 20,000 dollars was a small sum in the eyes of a wedding planner.
I was frustrated constantly and angry a lot. I am normally a high strung, high emotion person and this was totally draining me. I just thought that if I kept on searching and searching the most perfect, affordable, and available venue would surface and announce its presence like a beautiful wedding whale. That would never happen, and I knew it, I just couldn't stop myself. I didn't want to just pick something out of desperation, but time was running out, people were getting annoyed and, I needed to do something quickly before I went completely nutter-butters.
Finally, after lots of emotions, we concluded that a previously-shot-down modest and affordable venue would have to do. The Mister practically dragged me back there to consider it a second time. It's not fancy, it's small, it has a bunch of restrictions, and it's far from perfect. It's miles from what I thought I wanted, but as my expectations started to deflate, I started to come around. It has four sides, a roof, a floor and a little garden on the side. Add a few posies, a bunch of friends and maybe that would be good enough. Miraculously, they still had my preferred date available.
So, I wrote the biggest number I had ever done on a check — a deposit for the site and the caterer and a signed contract. It was the first thing I purchased for the wedding and there will be plenty more and higher numbers to come. It has become real. I'm getting married for reals.
I feel at peace. I've learned a lot. I feel I've grown a lot as a person. I feel like I've overcome a big obstruction — my own over-inflated need for perfection. There will be more stress and more strange new problems to overcome by the time this wedding day rolls around, for sure. For now, however, a large chunk of it is completed.
Anyone else wrestle with their perfection demons and came out with something not-so-perfect-but-still-good?