"Wedding nightmares" is going to be a monthly topic about things I've learned along the way. When you start planning weddings, you don't automatically know it all. This is a great reason to hire an experienced planner. Every single wedding at the beginning is a chance to learn more. Over 10 years time, I'm confidently equipped with the tools and experience to handle rough family relationships, difficult wedding plans, and much more. So here are some "nightmares" to show you what we've learned along the way!
The following is a story about a relationship between a bride and her mom. And just what happens to a bride's brain on her wedding day. This story wasn't funny at the time, but that was about 7 years ago, so now I can look back and laugh, and happily share with you.
During the wedding planning, one thing the bride made VERY clear was that she did not want nuts at the wedding. We carefully prepared her menu, and followed her desired "no nuts" plan for EVERYTHING - salads, rolls, entrees, cake, you name it. Her reasoning for not wanting nuts was not allergy related. It was just a personal hatred of nuts (weird, but I didn't judge).
We'd even reviewed the bride's desire to not have favors on the tables. She thought favors were wasteful, since not all guests take them home. No matter how hard I tried to get her to do something, ANYTHING, she was adamant.
Throughout the planning, her mother was always there, helping make decisions. I just want to state that at NO point in time did the bride and her mom argue or show any signs of stress towards one another. Keep in mind that the bride's mom and dad were paying for the entire wedding, so mom was definintely allowed an opinion. But mom said "yes" to the bride's dreams, never stepped on toes, or shared an opposing opinion during the planning.
And then the wedding day came. And the bride's brain went to mush. I was setting up the wedding, and the mom came into the reception room with a big bag, filled with truffle cups and jordan almonds. JORDAN ALMONDS. Almonds = nuts. I know, I know. A very typical wedding favor. But there were 3 issues with this:
1. The bride said no nuts. (And her mom knew this).
2. The bride said no favors. (And again, her mom knew this).
3. My signed event order clearly stated no nuts and no favors, so I knew not to put them out.
I told the mom "we discussed this, and I'm not able to put those out on the table." So what does the mom do? She starts putting them on the tables herself. I asked her to stop. And at that moment, before I can resolve the issue, the bride walked in. . .
I'll never forget the look on that bride's face. Or the tone in her voice. "What are THOOOOOOOSE?!!!!" while pointing at the truffle cups. The mom stopped in her tracks, looked incredibly guilty, and didn't say a peep. So I spoke up, "your mother arrived just now with jordan almonds and is adamant about putting them on the tables. What would you like us to do?" The meltdown that followed was epic.
"ALMONDS???!!!! ALMONDS???????!!!!!! I SAID NO NUUUUUUUUUUTS!!!!!!!!!" I mean, screaming at the top of her lungs. To which the mother snaps and says "LISTEN HERE. YOU are OUT of CONTROL. You needed favors. It's rude not to have favors for your guests. And these almonds are traditional. We had to do SOMETHING. It's not a big deal."
Well, bride continues to have full on melt-down, and exits the room sobbing. Mother chases her down the hall. I can hear them yelling at each other, even with the door shut to the room. Eventually they made up and the rest of the wedding day went flawlessly.
What I learned:
1. Give parents a VERY clear chance to share their opinion. This includes dad too!
2. If they have an opposing opinion, talk it through until you have a mutually agreeable solution.
3. If you follow steps 1 and 2, you avoid someone changing your plans on the wedding day behind your back.
4. The littlest things can be catalysts for epic meltdown on an emotional wedding day.
5. I now love jordan almonds because of this experience. They make me smile. That and the infamous scene from Bridesmaids: