I awoke on July 8 with the weight of the world on my shoulders yet great anticipation. Today would be one of the biggest day of our lives as we celebrated our daughter entering into married life. My daughter told me that all she asked is that I would not be sick or stressed on this momentous day. I took comfort in my usual morning routines of a quiet time with Jesus, some brain games, and a quick breakfast with my vitamins before preparing myself to go to the church. I loaded up the car with last minute supplies and prayed with my husband before I headed over to the venue across town.
Abbie had a detailed schedule of the day for all of the people involved in the wedding, and the schedule told me to arrive at 10:30am for hair and makeup. I am not a girly-girl by any stretch of the imagination but had researched hairstyles that complement my hair length and color. Lexie, our amazing hair stylist and one of Abbie’s childhood friends, worked wonders on my hair. Likewise, another one of Abbie’s childhood friends, Emily, brought out features in my face that I didn’t even know existed. We had many hours of preparation and relaxation before the ceremony.
The entire day passed by in a joyful blur of love, music, smiles, laughter, pride, tears, activity, embraces, pictures, fun, reunions, dancing, waiting, celebrating, and waving goodbye. I had asked my friends to pray that the triple digit temperatures would miraculously decrease, thinking that would ensure the day’s “success.” God taught me a valuable lesson by not lowering the temperatures but lowering all stress and tension instead.
For any mothers anticipating their daughter’s weddings, I have some tips of what worked well for us.
- If financially possible, get a hotel room for the bride and her closest bridesmaids the night or two before the wedding. This gives them independence and a last chance for bonding and gives you much needed peace and rest.
- Bring a wireless speaker to the room where the bride is getting ready and play her favorite Pandora station. Music can soothe nerves and promote joy. My daughter’s request was the John Mayer station.
- Order deli trays from the local supermarket to have in the bride’s and groom’s dressing rooms around lunchtime if the ceremony isn’t until mid to late afternoon. If a friend offers to help, have them pick up the deli trays and even split them between the bride’s and groom’s rooms.
- Bring a small assortment of childhood toys to the dressing room if there are children in the ceremony. We had Legos and Fisher Price toys, and they were not only beneficial to the flower girl and ring bearer but also to the children of the pastor and worship leaders, not to mention some of the adults with a childlike heart. My husband and I had so much fun playing with 3 delightful little girls during the sound check, and we found that it relaxed us and reminded us of precious time spent playing with our daughter.
- Take fun and candid pictures during the day, but don’t get in the way of the official photographer.
- Don’t insist on your own way. This is your daughter’s wedding. Being right isn’t worth more than your relationship with your daughter.
- Enjoy yourself! This is a great day where you get to see many people you love. Let them know what they mean to you and how honored you are that they are in attendance.
- Stand back and observe the precious moments of the day, and tuck those memories into your heart for days when you are missing your little girl.