mother-of-the-bride and a wedding coordinator

Nov 15, 2021

“This one, at last, is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh.” Genesis 2:23

“Sweet Mother Mary, be a mother to me now.” A familiar prayer that I have prayed for most of my life emanated from my heart and fell audibly from my lips.

It was the wedding day. Mike and I were experiencing our first wedding of a child the last weekend in September. Our daughter, Katy, would marry her love, Alex.

The cool and sunny day came slowly but passed into the night so quickly. It was a beautiful sacramental marriage that was loved by all.

Katy and I planned every detail for this large wedding that 200 people ultimately attended. My daughter is blessed to be both book smart and creative.

For three years she worked full time as a Nurse while completing a double Masters in Business and Nursing. As a graduation gift for that amazing achievement, we bought her a Cricut Maker and she went to town “Cricutting” every sign, nametag, table number, and bag label possible for the reception.

She purchased chargers, unique cheese trays, a Hedge wall, a “Matthews” neon sign for the Hedge wall (super fun—you should consider this!), and I proceeded to purchase and gather all the floral vases, stands, family pictures, easels, and anything else needed for the Church and reception.

Katy has a great attention to detail and created Google docs with all the details. Nothing was left undone. We had great fun planning and putting all this together.

We had already secured a highly recommended florist, photographer, videographer, DJ, and cake for the event almost one year prior. Our favorite priests were con-celebrating at the most beautiful Catholic Church in town. Everything was in place.

On Friday, the day before the wedding, it was time to cart all this to the wedding venue. Our family of 7 packed up 5 cars and were headed to the hotel by 10am.

The reception happened to be at a hotel 40 minutes away, so we all stayed there for 2 nights. That was a great decision! It made things so much easier. Because the hotel was short on staff, our whole family set up the ballroom for a few hours, setting 22 tables exactly how they should be, ensuring that the right tables were in the correct places for the next day, etc.

It was beautiful and exactly how we envisioned, but left us very tired.

We couldn’t have known how much work, time, and coordination with hotel staff this would take. As I prayed that familiar prayer to the Blessed Mother, I thought of my own mother that passed away just 8 months prior.

I could feel her beautiful presence as my thoughts rushed to being there for my daughter in every way on her wedding day.

I started to think of the value of a Wedding Coordinator that Friday afternoon as I showered up to rush over to the Church for the Rehearsal and on to the Rehearsal Dinner right after. I was rushing. There was still so much to do. Everything was perfect so far.

Videographer, Bridesmaids, and Groomsmen had all made it safely into town and we were on our way. The Rehearsal dinner was amazing and I knew that Alex’s Mom had a Coordinator help her with that event. Again, my thoughts went to the value of a Wedding Coordinator.

Just someone to help with all the details and things that kept coming up.

I woke up promptly at 7am the next morning excited for the wedding day and drove to my hair and makeup appointment. I came back to the hotel where Mike and I proceeded to set up the Atrium space in the hotel where the cocktail hour would be while the bridal party got their hair and makeup done.

Time started to tick away and before I knew it, I was running into the hotel room to get my dress and sandals on—taking just a few minutes to sit on the bed to cool off. I put on my dress and ran over to the Bride Room to help Katy into her dress, take some quick photos, and rush off to the Church. (Ugh—I wanted to spend more time with her in this space. She was so beautiful. There simply is nothing like seeing your daughter in her wedding gown.)

The Sacramental Marriage Ceremony was majestic and everything that needed to be perfect was absolutely perfect. Alex and Katy looked radiant. We took some quick family pictures (and, I mean quick!), and then Mike and I rushed back to the hotel to make sure that everything was set up for the cocktail hour and reception.

Hmmm, the value of a Wedding Coordinator.

Cocktail hour was going fine, the florist had saved the day with a few last-minute items at the hotel while we were at the Church. As I looked into the ballroom, her exquisite flower arrangements were so beautiful and for so many reasons, I thanked God that we had hired her. Everything was right on schedule as the catering staff was setting the ballroom tables with wine service that they forgot until I reminded them just before.

After cocktails, the guests made their way to their seats in the ballroom and the bridal party stepped off the Party Bus making their grand entrance into the reception. The DJ was excellent, the liquor was flowing, the speeches were THE BEST—so good. The food was decent, the cake was AMAZING. The dance floor was packed for the entire evening.

Our first wedding was a tremendous success with so many people contributing to that success!

The next day we were up early to pack all the cars with our stuff, and headed over to a lovely brunch given by Alex’s parents.

When we arrived home later that day exhausted out of our minds, I had learned the value of a Wedding Coordinator. I have two children left to get married—Nick will be married next May.

I promptly talked to his fiancé after unpacking all of our items and we agreed that we would try to secure a Wedding Coordinator for the Rehearsal Dinner for their out-of-town wedding so that we all could fully enjoy every moment of that weekend.

Sometimes, there are obstacles that we cannot see until we experience them and become aware of them. My obstacle in this instance was how involved I became in the details of the venue. I didn’t foresee this—I had always planned our gatherings by myself.

But, at the expense of what?

In my estimation it was at the expense of being present to my sweet daughter, the bride, enjoying the amazing day with utter joy, and mingling with all our guests. I am planning differently in the future. I know a Wedding Coordinator won’t solve everything, but I’m sure willing to try this option.

I am a Catholic Fasting Coach and clients pay me a good amount of money for my expertise to help them get results. I know my value in helping my clients find love and compassion for themselves in the present moment while planning for the obstacles that keep them from spiritually fasting.

And, now I know the value of a Wedding Coordinator. Although the wedding was wonderful in every way, as the Mother-of-the Bride, I would have liked to savor more of every moment, taken more time and thought over photos, been more attentive to the bridal party and their needs—especially my daughter.

I wish I would have had the time and energy and the mindset to slow down, converse with all our guests, and enjoy every moment. I love learning and paying for value so, after we hire the Wedding Coordinator for the May wedding, I’ll let you know how it goes!

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