Merriment & Mischief

Because I’ve been there, the Mother-of-the-Bride

The big day will arrive and all the planning for this very special occasion will be realized. As you watch your daughter, this beautiful Bride, you will truly understand that you and you alone, have the distinct honor of being her mother, the Mother-of-the-Bride. You undoubtedly will feel a multitude of emotions as the day unfolds. And now you know this day is much bigger than all the planning; it’s remembering all those special and wonderful moments throughout her life that have brought her to this point.  As you watch the stylist twist and turn her hair into a gorgeous “updo” and place the beautiful tiara on her head, you remember brushing her hair into a little pony tail while she wiggled impatiently underneath your hands. As the finishing touches are put on her make-up, you flash back to the day when she was just a little girl and “borrowed” your lipstick and it ended up all over her lips, cheeks and chin. As she steps into her gorgeous wedding gown and takes your breath away, all you can see are visions of her dancing around in great excitement over her first little pink tutu. The memories will undoubtedly flood your thoughts and bring more than one or two tears to your eyes in the process. Because I’ve been there, the Mother-of-the-Bride, I’d like to offer a few suggestions…

Like you’ve done all her life, you’ve wanted every moment for her to be perfect, so it’s no wonder you are working so hard to make her vision of this very special day come true. Remember though this is an extremely important day in your life too. So give yourself permission to look and feel beautiful and elegant. Get an amazing dress, not a matronly one, have your make-up and hair done, and spend time on yourself without feeling guilty. Remember you should be the “second” most gorgeous woman this day. You can do this and still not up-stage your daughter, the incredibly beautiful and young Bride.

 

Ask your family and friends for help, especially your closest girlfriends.  Don’t expect them to read your mind or automatically know what would be helpful. They may not have experienced this event or understand how much you could use their help.  For example, with my daughter’s wedding, I would have loved to have had one of my girlfriends arrange for breakfast for the bridal party the morning of the wedding. Instead, I found myself heading out at 6:30 am in order to pick-up a variety of sweet rolls and bagels, multiple types of cream cheese, and two large containers of coffee. It would have been so nice if I could have turned this one assignment over to a friend, allowing me to sleep in a little longer or take a more relaxing shower. To release this burden, would have made the morning of my daughter’s wedding a little bit less stressful. And don’t worry, you’ll be able to return the favor or repay your friend in some manner because that’s what girlfriends do. Sometimes, you just need to ask.   

 

I would encourage you to put things into perspective and maintain balance. It’s easy for the wedding to take on a life of its own and completely consume you. It’s an exciting, hectic, and busy time. There are so many vendors to book, items to order, and details to remember. It can be overwhelming at times and cause a great deal of stress. It can strain the most treasured of relationships, leading to quick words, short-tempered outbursts, and even some “melt downs”.  At times like this, try and remember the fundamental reason for all the planning; the beginning of your daughter’s future with the man she loves. Also, sometimes it’s good to do something completely unrelated to the wedding. Go to dinner, the movies or even the zoo with your husband or call one of your girlfriends and make a lunch date, meet for a long walk or just call and talk with them about anything other than the wedding. In the end, even if it’s not “perfect”, she will be married so try to just have fun with the experience and above all, enjoy your daughter.

 

Finally, remember those memories and emotions I first mentioned above, well you cannot avoid them, they are going to come. I would suggest that you keep the Kleenex box near and just embrace them. You are uniquely situated and it is an indescribable experience, obviously shared only by those of us who have daughters. It is a time full of tender moments shared with your daughter and many wonderful flashbacks to those days of yesterday. In one way, it is just so hard to believe she has reached this point in her life but on the other hand, it is so exciting and even comforting to watch her make plans with the man she loves, her dearest friend, her future.    

I learned so much from being the Mother-of-the-Bride. It was a time shared with my oldest daughter, Jennifer that I will always hold near and dear to my heart. Jennifer is now married to a wonderful man, Phil and my husband, Rick and I could not be happier about the union. Fortunately for me we have another daughter, Jillian, who will marry someday when it’s right for her. When that time comes, I only hope that I listen well to my own voice.

I hope you will enjoy being the Mother-of-the-Bride every bit as much as I did. 

Best wishes…. Becky

 

Jennifer experimenting with make up

Finally hiring a professional to do her make up

Mother and Daughter on the wedding day!

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