PLANNING A WEDDING WITH CHRONIC ILLNESS
I can still remember our engagement like it was yesterday. Strolling along a beach in Mexico, under a sky full stars. It had just rained and the air was cool and refreshing, a welcome release after days of sweltering heat. We were the only two around and at that moment it felt like we were the only two people in the world. You would never of guessed that just seconds before, I was in the process of having a full on meltdown after not being able to find a restaurant I had been recommended and was suffering a bout of ‘hanger’. In that instant all my worries melted away and I honestly felt like I could conquer anything with this amazingly generous and kind hearted guy by my side.
For a short time after our engagement I was lost in a whirlwind of wedding venues, dresses, guest lists and decor ideas. I had no idea that 3 years on and there wouldn’t be a single wedding plan in place. Instead we would endure 2 rounds of failed IVF, 2 surgeries, hormone replacement therapy and that’s not even including the daily pain and fatigue that I had began to suffer.
Sometimes, I still find it so hard to believe that Mr T would choose to marry me? But he is always there with my favourite blanket when I wake up from surgery, hot water bottles when the cramp is so bad I can’t walk and a shoulder to cry on when the pain get’s too much.
For a while I tried to carry on as normal, contacting venues and researching caterers, until eventually the thought of planning a wedding filled me with a dread. How was I ever going to plan a wedding for a 100+ guests when I was struggling to get out of bed in the morning? How was I ever going to enjoy my ‘big day’ when I couldn’t even leave the house? And so, after a chat with Mr T it was decided to postpone any further wedding plans in order to focus on my health.
I wish today’s post could have been titled ‘how to plan a wedding with chronic illness?’ But unfortunately, as you’ve already read, I simply don’t have the answers. However, I do have something that you might find helpful, if you have found yourself in a similar position.
At the start of this year, I mentioned that I had discovered ‘Minimalism’ and how it had had a profound effect on my health. A few months later and I have started to apply this approach to other areas of my life, in particular my mental health.
I decided to get rid of my mental clutter.
I had long held on to the guilt of having still not planned our wedding, so I decided to give myself permission to let go. I realised it was OK to not want to plan a wedding with everything we were going through. I stopped thinking about where we were going to get married, who we were going to invite, how much money we would have to save? Instead, I set myself new expectations, focusing on what I could do to improve my health, diet being my main priority. My plans are different now to what they are were 3 years ago, I’m happier, healthier and looking forward to what the future holds. Don’t get me wrong we still want to get married, it’s just not our main goal right now.
To get married, I knew I needed to get better and set myself new expectations. Of course the way in which you choose to plan your own wedding is up to you, but just remember to always be honest with yourself. Accept that you might not be able to do everything on your own, ask for help if you need it and don’t be ashamed to tell people if things aren’t quite going to plan, they will appreciate your honesty. Do what you have to do to make wedding planning work for you, even if it does mean shoving it all on the back burner.