DIY wedding

The Red & Black Blues

No one ever speaks of this, but I think it has to be a common circumstance, for it seemed so natural for me even though I had no idea it would hit.

It… the Post-Wedding Blues, struck me almost immediately.

It wasn’t that the experience lacked beauty and a whimsical nature, I just couldn’t help but feel that the free-fall after the climax wasn’t, well, as exciting as the buildup.

I should have expected this eminent crash, but had not had the time to consider the color and consistency of life after the wedding.

Soooo… what now?

I had been super hands-on throughout the planning process, and was now left wondering:

What do I do with myself? What do I do with my time… and my thoughts? What do I do with my hands?

I now felt misplaced, having emerged from an immersion of crunch-time tasks and bold decisions, to be now left with precisely nothing pressing to do.

Since we had virtually made all of our decorations, and bought our own glassware, e.i. red glass vases and votives by the droves, we had to now either find a place for these items as decor in our newly purchased home, store the cache, or give it away in pieces. We did some of each of those, but not necessarily in a timely fashion. After dismantling the handmade centerpieces, the giant kusudama paper flowers lain untouched in our spare room for weeks. Ok… maybe it was months. Some of the pieces were ruined because the petals rested on a hard surface for far too long (shamefully, it was the floor).


I did finally face the task of sorting those hand-crafted memories, and slowly found homes for the salvageable pieces around the house. Today they serve as unique decor and reminders of the experience.

origami paper kusudama flowers

In the midst of my post-wedding lull, I began to recognize that the way in which I was feeling was akin to the fact that I couldn’t grasp the notion that the event was actually a success.

Let me clarify: A wedding in which vows are exchanged could technically never be considered unsuccessful. The point of it all is to get hitched… and we did, so that in itself equals success. So by success, in this case, I mean that it passed The Snicker Test (A Snicker Test failure is easy to spot. It is indicated by the initiation of snickers, when such a gesture would otherwise be considered inappropriate).

I’ve since come to believe that this disconnect was not due to some strange reaction to the stress of the process, but instead occurred because the stress did not intensify in the manner in which I expected it to do. I realized that I had failed to experience that stage of stomach-churning, got-the-shits-every-morning-panic that I had prepared for and anticipated.

You see, I am a wonderfully-intentioned starter, but I do not find the finishing to come so naturally. Most confuse this characteristic for an exhibit of procrastination, because the end result of two often appear to be the same, but I insist that I am not a procrastinator.

My ‘starter streak’ has often created issue for me. I never had a problem starting projects, but the final stages always induced panic. In college, I often found the last paragraph of a paper to be the hardest to write, and ultimately my most flimsy work.

Eventually I had The Revelation:

I fizzle.

It wasn’t easy to accept, this fundamental flaw, but I clearly got over it, eventually.

When faced with a wedding to plan, I was immediately aware that an expression of this personality trait could mean disaster for our event. I became damned determined not to pull yet another “all nighter.” At first I was terribly frightened, mainly because the Big Wedding Machine encourage brides-to-be to outsource, to let someone else… no, pay someone else to do it. The industry feeds women 30 minute increments of the idea that there is not enough time in the world for a working woman to plan a respectable wedding. Furthermore, the ‘normal’ woman is apparently too incompetent to navigate the wedding industry appropriately. Normal women cannot successfully arrange and execute an event of this magnitude, despite the fact that is essentially just the combination of a short ceremony (hopefully) and an epic party (yes, please).

Straight off the blocks I believed that I would be an insufficient planner, and was sure that I would subsequently come down with a case of the ‘eleventh-hour shits.’ By all accounts, if I tried to handle the details myself and execute a DIY wedding, I would invariably create a hot mess instead.

If I myself tried to book the vendors and arrange the details, then unimaginable hell would consequently ensue. It was in my nature as a ‘normal woman,’ and had been foretold by the industry. I heard the warnings loud and clear.

But I clearly got over that too, eventually.