Once upon a time, my youngest daughter and I owned a stationery store. Because we love paper and invitations and note cards and holiday cards (oh, the lovely holiday cards) and gifty items, it was a fun and wonderful business.
We worked with hundreds of brides over the years on all things wedding and it seemed that many of them were focusing so intently on producing the perfect wedding that they were missing out on the joy. I would remind them to stop at random times throughout the planning -- and especially on the big day -- to look around and remember the moment.
Take mental snapshots of where you're standing, what is happening around you, close your eyes and listen to the music, the voices, inhale the lovely fragrances wafting through the air. Feel it, memorize it, enjoy it ... and someday when you need it most, you'll be able to recall that moment and all of the sensations surrounding it.
We are in the wedding planning stages with this same youngest daughter and as we have worked our way through appointments with caterers and bakeries and dress shops, I've felt her stress bubbling up through the happiness. Unfortunately, it's human nature to want everything to be perfect. A wedding is such an unusual, relatively short moment in time in a couple's married life and who doesn't want to look back at photos and videos and see loveliness and perfection?
So I've been reminding her to stop ... and look ... and listen ... and feel ... and enjoy ... and remember. And to commemorate the thought, I made a little sign that can be downloaded as a reminder.
While this was created with brides in mind, it is also for the groom, the parents of the happy couple and other members of the wedding party.
I find myself doing this at moments that have nothing to do with weddings. Remembering moments of joy and storing them away for later. Grinning from ear to ear at a rodeo with the love of my life, feeling the music pulse through me during a singalong at my granddaughter's 16th birthday party, hanging around the kitchen counter with the family eating Monkey Bread on Christmas morning, laughing at our Yorkies wrestling their way through the family room, standing in line at a special donut shop with my future brother-in-law and sisters who live far away, sitting here on a peaceful morning with my coffee and creme brûlée creamer writing this blog post.
Making lasting memories!