Hi guys, Claire here! This is one of my very final Real Bride Diary posts, because…I'm getting married today!
It's been a real treat for me to write these posts over the last year, and take time out to think about the decisions we've made for our wedding, to let off about some of our fears and frustrations, and to get a bit indulgent in telling you all the details of what we've been planning.
And if you've stuck with me throughout, thanks!
So today's post (which I've prepped a few days in advance) was supposed to be something of a letter to myself for my wedding morning.
But really, I have no advice to give. Other than to say, take a deep breath, soak up every second, and no matter how much you're fretting over your hair, your make-up or your dress, I bet you look gorge!
So, seeing as that letter to myself would make for a pretty short post, I thought I'd share a few thoughts, last minute musings if you will, of something I've come to the realisation of over the last few months.
Weddings are pretty magic.
I always knew weddings were fun, and beautiful, and romantic (I write about them for a living after all), but they also have some sort of special power, that makes even the most cynical person excited, that gets someone to travel across the world just to see you say ‘I do', and that can give you something to look forward to, during otherwise tough times.
Weddings get a lot of stick for being no more than a money spinner. An over-hyped concept couples buy into, that's nothing more than an expense for them, their parents and their guests. And a cause of stress and drama.
And while it's true that your wedding day tends to be one of the more expensive and indulgent days in your life, it's so so much more than that.
As I type this, I'm sitting in my childhood bedroom surrounded by all the Pinterest-inspired DIY bits my dad has patiently helped us put together over the last few months. My sister, her husband and her baby are in the next room, they've flown all the way from Greece during their busiest month of the year in work. And I'm about to go to a party that all my aunties are throwing in my honour.
How cool is that?
And in a few days time, for the first time ever, almost every single person I love in the world, every friend, every relative, will be in the same room, sharing a meal.
That kind of blows my mind.
I'm excited to get married and be married, of course. But for Marko and I, we're not expecting our relationship to change overnight. For us, this is about legitimising and celebrating our relationship, and becoming the family that we already feel we are.
So for us, our wedding has been more about celebrating our favourite things and celebrating with our favourite people. It's about throwing a massive party and giving everyone a night to remember.
Because in my mind, when you look back over your life, it's just a series of your most stand-out memories, and how special is it to have that picture of a party that was all about love, that everyone came to and danced at and had a great time.
Maybe I'm over-thinking it, and maybe I'm buying into the complex, but for me, our wedding has been about nothing but joy since the moment we got engaged.
Marko proposed to me a few months after my mam passed away. It was an uplifting end to a horrendous year, and (along with the birth of my stunning niece) it gave a bit of light and promise for happier times to come.
And if that alone, was all we got from our wedding (and it won't be!), it would make all the expense and effort so so worth it. To have a distraction, to have something to look forward to and think about on darker days was an absolute gift.
And while I know my wedding day without my mam by my side will be a little less happy (and a lot more emotional), just to know how much she loved Marko and how delighted she was to know I'd found someone awesome, makes me smile no end.
There are enough awful things in this world, enough sad news, enough personal tragedies, and it's not all that often you get to bring people together to celebrate something good.
So if all a wedding does is stop people checking their newsfeed for an afternoon, lifts them out of something heavy in their lives for a few hours, or makes them smile at the mere thought of it, well then I think weddings are worth the hype.
So by now, I should have my hair and make-up nearly complete. The tables will be set, the food will be prepped, and the flowers will have been delivered. I'll be heading back to the hotel to have a drop of bubbly with Marko and listen to our pre-wedding playlist.
He'll help me into my dress, and then we'll go get hitched.
I'm sure we have wonderful things in store, both on the day, and in the months and years to come. But for now, I'm just basking in all the peace, excitement and elation of the lead-up. Because that's plenty enough for me,
Read all my Real Bride Planning Diaries so far.