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I’m Louise. Blogger. Wife. Designer of TruLu Couture Veils + Accessories.  If you’d like to know more, check out my bio.

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Ask and You Shall Receive

I was inspired by the comments my MOH and readers left on the blog yesterday. A lot of really good points were made, ones that I think need to be shared on a grander scheme.

Yesterday’s post surrounded bridesmaid dresses, but more importantly communicating your wants, needs and desires to your maids in regards to their dresses. I think we need to take this a few steps farther. Further? I can’t ever remember which to use when.

Anyway, grammatical issues aside, let’s talk about talking, OK? As in communication. You gotta do it. It was something that I thought I was doing during my wedding planning process, but totally wasn’t. You might think that the people in your life know what you’re thinking about your wedding. They don’t. They don’t have a clue. And guess what? It’s not really a high priority on their day-to-day list of things to do in life. It just isn’t. You want it to be, but it’s not. You are going to have to embrace this and deal with it. I wish I had. It would have made things a lot easier on my poor little brain.

Much too far along into the planning process, I met Liza Hippler*, a Bridal Coach. She offered to coach me in the latter stages of being engaged. I also attended one of her Maiden to Married seminars. I so wished that I had met her immediately after getting engaged! It would have made the journey to my wedding day so much easier.

I’m going to try to share with you some of the words of wisdom Liza shared with me. One of the first tasks put to me was this:

  • Set an intention for why I’m getting married.

Sounds simple enough, right? Why are you getting married? Are you knocked up? Is it just “time?” Is it because you love your fiancé bigger than the whole sky? Whatever the reason, that’s your mantra. Keep that as the meaning behind what you are doing.  For most brides, I’m going to assume that you’re getting married because you do, in fact, love your man bigger than the whole sky and want to spend the rest of your life with him. Right? Put that intention down on paper. Like on the front of your wedding binder. Or on the bathroom mirror. Tape it to the fridge, on your car dashboard. Are you getting the point? Good. Let’s move on.

Personally, I think that most of my friends and family didn’t really know what to do with the fact that I was getting married and having a wedding. My friend Alecia was probably the most girltastic about it. Lots of SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE-ing, offers to help, lending an ear, etc. She rocked. My other gal-pals were pretty hands-off. This wasn’t meant as a slight, or that they didn’t want to be involved or anything like that. They just knew that I was on top of it. And that’s not to say that they didn’t do anything or offer to help. No, that was not the case. However, most live far away and couldn’t really be hands-on so the bulk of stuff fell to me, and I was OK with that. I like being busy and in charge.

But as the planning progressed, there were several things that weren’t falling into place. They were things that made me feel out of control, a little blue and a lot frustrated. Most of those things had to do with other people. And that is where I totally fucked up. I expected people to know what I wanted. I expected my friends and family to know what to do and how to do it. My thoughts were, “Well, they know me, they should know.” That, my friends, is bullshit. And it's totally unfair to your friends and family.

You cannot expect people to know what you’re thinking. You can’t set expectations for people and not tell them. It’s just not fair. You can’t assume that people are going to do what you think they need to do. This may sound like a no-brainer, but when you’re knee deep in guest lists, menu planning and budgets – all bets are off when it comes to rational thinking. The best piece of advice Liza gave me was that I needed to start asking for what I wanted. Sounds simple, right? Oh, it was so hard.

I remember a conversation I had with my MOH when she was planning her travel out for the wedding. She was laying out plans and telling me about flights and such and I just remember thinking, “No. No. No. No. No. No. No. This is not what I want. Not at all.” And I was frustrated because I knew she had so much to juggle: work, husband, kids. I didn’t want to tell her “No. No. No. No. No. No. No. This is not what I want. Not at all.” I thought I was going to have to start researching different flights and times and how to best handle the situation. In retrospect, I think I was unintentionally plotting how to best manipulate the situation in order not to ruffle feathers or upset myself or my MOH. And in all this clutter in my head, I remembered the advice Liza gave me in a session: “You are allowed to ask for what you want.” So instead of the “No. No. No. No. No. No. No. This is not what I want. Not at all.” I was able to just say, “I want you here. I want you here on this day because of X, Y and Z. Can you do that?” And the planning and chatting stopped and she said, “Let me see what I can do.” And you know what? She did it. There was no manipulation. There was no gnashing of teeth or pulling of hair. Afterwards, I was like, “Whoa. That really works.” In Liza’s words, “Use asking for what you want as an opportunity to grow.” Really great advice.

But what if  my MOH wasn’t able to do what I wanted? What then? Liza had my back on that one too. The other ah-ha question she asked me:

  • Can I let go of what I think or know I want?

Could I? Would I harbor resentment because of it? Would I want to waste my precious time being engaged to The Candyman pissed off at the people I love? The direction then was to go back and read my intention and then answer the question. The answer was a resounding NO.

Once I got asking for what I wanted down, lots and lots of things became much easier to do. I remember being irritated with my mom over stuff she didn’t know about the wedding. I mean, I had blogged about it for crissake, why didn’t she know? Because she wasn’t reading my blog. Um, WHAT? So in a bit of a hissy fit one morning I barked into my cell phone, “You know what, Mom? All I need for you to do right now is listen to me when I call to bitch and read my damn blog.” And she did. And she even left comments. That made me happy.

The last Big Picture advice that I carried with me in the latter part of planning was to indulge in everything bridal. Because I was a Thirty-Something Bride, I didn’t feel like I could be that giddy, “I’M GETTING MARRIED!” kinda girl. I never had been, why start now? I had always been that cool, slightly indie-chick who made fun of girls with acrylic nails and fake tans. But I wanted to be that girl (not the acrylic nail/fake tan girl, but the giddy girl). I wanted to be all, “SQUEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE, I’m getting MARRIED!” But I don’t think people expected that from me. My own assumption crippled me. I can’t blame anyone else. It was me who did it to me. People don’t magically know how you feel. You have to open your mouth and say stuff. And then you have to be ready to not get what you want. But if you don’t ask for it, you can’t really blame anyone but yourself if you don’t get it.

So take some time and make a list of things you want or need from others in your wedding planning process. Do you want your MOH by your side every moment? Let her know. Don’t direct her, but just share what you want and expect. It’s only fair. Need alone time prior to walking down the aisle? Make sure your planner (or whomever) knows to clear the way a few minutes before you do your aisle gig. Do you want your maids to have their dresses in hand, ready to go the month before the wedding? Make sure they know. Just make a list of things that you know you want and communicate it. It sounds easy, but it can be really hard. But please trust me when I tell you that it is totally worth the effort you put into this task. It will keep you sane. I promise.

*Liza has recently given birth to her first baby girl, Sailor. She writes a Mommy Blog called Blahggy and it's really good. She's currently recapping labor. I am so not wanting kids now.

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Reader Comments (2)

Louise! Thanks for making me sound so awesome. I mean, not like it's hard. :)
And thanks for the blog shoutout and hanging out on my blog for a while! Hearing that you like my writing is awesome because you are such a fantastic writer. I will call you soon!!

June 18, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLiza

You're the shit, dude! Seriously :)

June 18, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNatosha

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