Cooling ardour; great expectations

I’ve gone off elephants made of flowers. I still think they are a glorious idea, and P’s view was (predictably) “sure, we can have them if you want them”, but for some reason I have lost interest in actually having them after further thought.

To be honest, home décor is not an area that has ever interested me, which I think is the reason why I have so little interest in the décor of the event. Or perhaps I’m just not that interested because it still feels far away, though in fact it’s only 8.5 months now. If it comes to décor I think I care more about the Malaysian wedding, but since I’m not in Malaysia, organising the décor just seems too much of a faff. I would rather just contemplate shoes for hours on end.

I guess I’ll leave it to my mom to sort it out. On Weddingbee someone started a thread asking whether other brides had put their fiancé/e in charge of anything to do with the wedding, as she was getting annoyed with her fiancé’s failure to ascertain their DJ’s contact details.

I was reminded of the relative strangeness of my situation as someone who is now deeply interested in the details of weddings, but has done very little about organising her own. P has taken the initiative and put down the cash for most of the details to do with the English wedding – I’d done some patchy research into reception venues in his hometown, but he was the one to make a list, get me to say which of the venues I liked, and arrange for us to be driven around by his mom to look at the venues. Fortunately we agreed on which venue we liked best, but P made the final decision to book it. The ceremony venue was more decided by circumstances than either of us – since we were going to have a church ceremony it only seemed sensible to have it in the church his parents attend – but e.g. he could have decided to have it in the Oxford Catholic chaplaincy and I wouldn’t have raised any objection.

On the other side, my mom’s done all the footwork with the Malaysian wedding – I did a lot of Internet research and made lists of venues for my parents to check out, but ended up getting frustrated over the paucity and unreliability of information available online (Malaysian businesses, update your websites!!!). After a lot of back and forth and er some tears, my mom identified and booked a reception venue that hadn’t even been on any of my lists. Of course, she described it to me before I approved the choice, but again, I didn’t really take the lead role in any of this.

I guess the reason why I’ve been on the sidelines of planning compared to other engaged women is that I don’t necessarily know what’s appropriate. With the English wedding, I have no idea what P’s family would expect and what the traditions are. It seems to make sense to leave everything but the most trivial details to P, therefore. Again, with the Chinese wedding, I’m sure I’d be a lot more hands-on if I was at home, but the combination of distance and the fact that I’m less familiar with the traditions and expectations than my parents are means that I might as well leave it to my mom to sort out. If I was at home, I’d be viewing venues together with my parents. I might be making more decisions off my own bat, but they’d have veto power, plus I’d probably be making decisions based on information they fed me anyway. What do I know about who the best caterers in Klang Valley are?

It works for me. These weddings will genuinely be a community effort – plus, other people taking on the actual work means I’m freed up to worry about the delightfully trivial: the cut of my dress and the design of my save the dates. And I’m not really doing nothing – I’ve drawn up a guest list, compiled addresses, booked the marriage preparation course run by the church, sent out the save the date cards, and helped liaise between my family and P’s family. I guess it’s just striking because I’m doing less than the average person who posts on wedding forums seems to expect of a bride.

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To-do in the next couple of months:

  • Get in touch with church lady after we’re back from our Chinese New Year trip and arrange for a meeting with the priest who’s been assigned to us as officiant
  • Confirm with parents that they should be in Norwich for at least the Friday and Saturday, and I s’pose ideally the Thursday and Sunday as well
  • Sort out P’s parents’ accommodation once they’ve confirmed how long they’ll be spending in Malaysia

Do I have to do anything about bridesmaids yet? I keep meaning to email them and start up a discussion about what sort of dresses they want to wear, but then I think, oh, I’ve got loads of time yet. I’ll start to think about sorting it out — hm — let’s say March or April.

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