My Pride in a Program

My wedding had a lot of do-it-yourself aspects.  In fact, almost everything was done by my family or myself.  My cake was made by my brother-in-law.  The food was made by my family.  The decorations were also made by my family with a little help from myself and my maid-of-honor.  All of the set-up was done by those same people.

One of the few things I did entirely by myself was make a wedding program.  When I started it, I saw it simply as a minute detail that had to be done.  I didn’t want to pay pretty much anything for it, and I felt that most designs were too bland or cookie-cutter for me so I set out to make my own.  What I ended up with I felt pretty good about.  I don’t think I ever expected to make something I liked so much.

I was actually excited to have people see what I had created and hopefully have someone other than myself also appreciate it.

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And wouldn’t you know it: the programs hardly saw the light of day!  Only about forty people were invited to the wedding, and about thirty people actually attended.  The wedding was supposed to be outside, and I left decent instructions on how I had imagined the scene to be set up.  But the wedding did not end up outside.  There was off-and-on rain the whole day so everything ended up inside a lodge I hadn’t really planned on using.

Amidst all the busyness–madness even–I didn’t realize that my family did not know what to do with the programs.  I had thought their placement was kind of self-evident (Almost nothing actually is).  I had imagined them to be placed on every seat at the ceremony or placed somewhere at the entrance to the ceremony so that everyone could follow along during the ceremony and know what was going on.

Well, I think how it ended up was one program was placed on each dining table, and they ended up not getting used, seen, or appreciated at all.  To my husband, this was money wasted on their printing, and to me, this was a little disappointment for me because I had wanted people to appreciate my efforts and tastes in these programs.  That simply wasn’t in the plans for my wedding-in-reality.  Oh, my wedding-in-my-mind had lots of self-serving details and particular plans, but my wedding-in-reality was much more fitting with my actual family, my actual relationship with my husband, and my actual life.

In reality, my wedding did not need more of my micro-managing.  Despite my zealous attempts, little is actually improved by my worrying, nagging, and overseeing.  LIKEWISE, little within me is helped by attention-seeking and self-edifying.  So, all-in-all very little was lost by the absence of my programs.

And really, from their very beginning, they had very little to do with the true purpose of my wedding: to unify my husband and I and begin our humbling journey as husband and wife while sharing in fellowship with our families who are the context for our very beings.  That purpose and that process is simply un-programable and un-micro-managable (despite my best efforts), and thank God for that!  My ego and selfishness were only detracting from my day because despite what society says, I have learned that a wedding IS NOT about a bride nor is meant to be Her Big Day.

With my story (and mistakes) in mind, what do you think a wedding is truly meant to be (rather  than what it has become as of late)?  Do all weddings have the same purpose or do we reduce them by trying to force them all to have the same script?

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