Sunday, March 25, 2007

Calling it off

I remember exactly where I was the day I got the call. "The wedding's off." This couple lost thousands of dollars, and I earned my stripes. As a wedding planner, losing a client because of a cancelled wedding can be devastating, especially when the couple seems to be so in love.

This was my first cancellation, but cancelled weddings aren't new. However, the threat of embarrassment and wasted expenses has kept the number of them down. A week ago I was talking to a married couple celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary. The husband said to me: "If we weren't married, we wouldn't be married today." Huh? What he meant was that if it wasn't for the shame of divorce or a cancelled wedding they would not have made it work. Today, they're like newlyweds. Great story, but what if you're experiencing a really bad case of cold feet?

Alison Moir-Smith, the author of Emotionally Engaged, offers the following tips. Are you getting sick - headaches, colds, feeling under the weather the entire planning period? - then listen to your body. Physical pain usually means something is wrong. Are you anxious? then pin-point the anxiety. Is it money? relatives? friends? the planning? or the next 50 years that's got your stomach in knots? Write down all of your crazy thoughts. Sometimes thoughts you're not aware of will come to the surface. If you're thinking you'll want to have an affair in a few years, then you may need to re-think your decision about marrying. And finally, talk. To people in happy marriages, but most importantly, to each other.

If you still feel like you must call the whole thing off, then call your wedding planner. We'll deal with the vendors, you'll have enough on your hands with family and friends.

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