14 August 2020, by Johnathan Chua
20th January 2018
This date is sacred. I drilled myself often – never to forget this. In fact, my home WiFi password is a variation of this date just to have a reason to mouth this date more than once a year. This date is also really important to my wife. It’s a fixture in our work and personal calendars. Every year on the anniversary of this date, we spend a day together, we spend a portion of our hard-earned savings together. It’s a momentous date for us.
But do you know who else looks forward to this date? Who celebrates with us?
A grand total of absolutely no one. You’re right. I’m talking about my wedding anniversary.
After the wedding, no one gives a flying spark.
Planning the wedding was a blast. We were blessed to have friends and family almost equally invested in making sure that the wedding was going to be great. We had our stag and hen nights, I picked my suit and Patrina wouldn’t show me her wedding dress because she wanted to see the look on my face when I see her in Church. (That translates to: You better cry)
On the night before my wedding, my wife’s maid of honour brought her sleeping pills. The best man brought drinks and his camera. I barely slept, because I knew that come tomorrow, everything will change and I’ll even go home to a different address.
As I stood at the alter waiting for the bridal entourage to arrive, I remembered feeling guilty. That so many guests have decided against sleeping in on a Saturday morning and have decided to dress up and come watch me exchange a few words with my wife-to-be. There’s also that pressure to cry when I see the bride.
I heard the honking from afar, the bride is here. My groomsmen aren’t with me as they’re getting ready for their march-in with the bridesmaid. I stood at the alter repeating my vows in my head, wondering if I styled my hair right, making faces for the photographer, and trying not to shit myself.
The church bell rang. Everyone rosed to their feet, and the entourage made their way in. The Church was even more beautiful once filled with everyone I loved. Then I saw my bride. Patrina flashed me with the happiest, brightest smile. To her left, her father. He is a hardened man of very few words. I saw him crying, and that’s when I cried. #nailedit
We did our dinner banquet at Crowne Plaza Hotel in a 24 table dinner where my wife surprised me by singing a song.
SO… HERE’S WHAT I WANT TO SHARE.
My Key Takeaways
1. No One Remembers The Details of Your Wedding
Your mother-in-law wants to decide on something stupid and puts the relationship on the line? Let her have it. As long as you come to terms with it, no one else cares and no one remembers. The stain of disrespectful son/daughter-in-law will last quite a while longer. I’m not asking you to suck it up. I’m asking you to accept it. Because once again, no one will remember.
2. The Wedding Banquet Is A Celebration Not A Ritual
The hotel gives you a template so it makes THEIR life easier, not yours. Feel free to take it apart and do what feels like a celebration to you and your guests. If you want to do it in a club, you do you. Make it fun for your guests since they gave their night to you. We had our emcee play a lot of games with us and our guests. I hoped everyone had fun and even if they didn’t, no one remembers!
3. Do It Simply
If like us, you plan to marry in your twenties without much in your bank, do it simply. The expensive photo booths, backdrops, and life-sized props immediately become nothing the next day. 5% of the photos taken will be posted, even if more posted it, it didn’t change your life except that you lost $5,000. And no one remembers your props.
4. The Night Makers
There were a few things we felt were the most important things that made the night and the memories to come.
- The Photographer
I would argue this to be the most important expenditure. A good wedding photographer can make an otherwise mediocre venue amazing and it makes you want to look at your wedding photos over and over again. No one will share photos of your pre-wedding shoot besides your mother. People will share photos when they look good in it. Get a photographer that captures moments, not take pictures. (Here’s a plug to my wedding photographer @pixioo)
- The Emcee
We had a good friend that become our wedding emcee. Every wedding game is cheesy until you have a good emcee. They make delays and embarrassments all part of the night’s entertainment. A willing family member will do. But if you’re cutting cost on other bits, a good emcee makes the night. (Shoutouts to my emcee @abooloveswhales)
- The Makeup Artist
If you’re the groom, everything is better when the wife feels her best. Insist on a trial hair and makeup session. The gown can be any if your wife feels beautiful. (My wife’s MUA @charlane_yu)
I hope this helps! But if you can’t hit all these points, please please please remember that NO ONE REMEMBERS ANYWAY. It’s simply a night that marks the start of a new journey. Your mother spent your actual birthday in the hospital.
What matters is that you continue to celebrate the anniversary of this day for the rest of your life.