I read an article recently about how couples could mark your original ‘big day’ if they’ve had to postpone due to COVID-19; it got me thinking about what I would do in their shoes. Here in France, many of us work not only for weddings, but we provide services for parties and lots of different celebrations too, all of these events will have special meaning for our clients.
When your ‘date’ arrives it’s going to be very hard to let it simply pass and do nothing. I think you should still mark the day and give it meaning, and maybe this will help with the sadness that you will inevitably feel. Instead of letting that date disappear, make new plans. Celebrate the date. Make it memorable in a positive way so that when you do look back you will have fond memories.
Many many years ago my husband and I married in secret. We had planned a big wedding too but we married secretly in a Registry Office a month before that date. We had lunch in our local pub (it was a gastro pub so very nice) and then we went back to work! In the evening we watched ‘Shakespeare in the Park’ – a local event which by coincidence was performing Romeo and Juliette on that day. We have one photo and whilst it wasn’t our ‘Big Day’ we both loved it; it was our moment. There we no frills or fanfares. It was simply two people in love who wanted to get married. Why am I telling you this? Because that day was as special to us as our ‘other’ wedding day.
If COVID-19 is making you change your plans right now then perhaps you can turn the original date into something positive, and a day that you will be happy to remember.
Plan A Special Dinner
Don’t let the date pass without a celebration. Many restaurants are still providing services which can be collected or delivered. Contact some of your favourite places and see if they can help you celebrate.
And if Champagne isn’t your tipple then choose your favourite and ensure you make a toast!
Go to Special Place
If you are able to leave home, then make a plan to go to a special place. Currently we can only travel 1 km from home but there is a walk around our house that we love. It goes through the woods behind our house and would be the perfect place for a little picnic or glass of something special. If you are in a city, take a walk together (if you can) and spot the places that bring back memories.
If you can get to a shop then buy some flowers, or if home deliveries are possible send yourself a bouquet. Find your favourite blooms and treat yourself. If you have flowers in the garden then pick a few for the house.
Plan a Zoom Celebration
Zoom, Facetime or HouseParty are some of the many options out there that make it easy to hold group meetings. Do not spend your day alone. Get in touch with the people that make you smile and get together to mark your day. I’ve taken part in a few Zoom meetings over recent weeks and I have to say they really lifted my spirits. And years ago when my husband worked away, we often had family dinners where he made a video call to join us all. Make some plans. Have a virtual party!
If you’re like me then you’ve perhaps not been dressing up as normal these days, but for this you should. Make an effort with your hair, if you wear makeup then apply some. Several celebrities have recently taken photos of themselves in their sequins! Why not follow their lead and put your glad-rags on! And if you’re planning a Zoom party then ask everyone to do the same!
Whatever you decide to do, remember take photos. If you go for a walk or hold a Zoom Party or dress up and have a special dinner, then take some photos. I wasn’t going to have any photographs of our secret wedding but the registrar took one and it now sits proudly in a frame on the bookcase along with other family photos. Mark the occasion and make some memories!
Order a Cake (or Make One)
Order a cake; even if it’s a cup cake! Many companies are making home delivering so you can order in advance.
Exchange Written Vows or Letters
If you were planning on getting married France then perhaps you can make your own private ceremony at home. if that seems a little weird with just the two of you then maybe just write down how you feel for each other instead. Tell your loved one what they mean to you and why marrying them is so important.
Ask friends and family to send you messages or letters or cards
Tell everyone that you’re still holding low-key isolation celebrations at home and ask them to send you greetings cards, or videos or messages to support you from afar
If you were getting married then it’s totally possible that your honeymoon is also postponed. Use this time to make other plans. If you were planning a summer wedding then maybe find a winter resort instead. Use the time to plan ahead and find alternatives and plan lots of amazing activities too… so that it becomes your first choice destination! We had planned a week away in Spain for June but of course this is postponed but we live in France so we made new plans to holiday in France; now that we’ve switched we’re really looking forward to the destination!
Watch your favourite movie
If you’ve planned a special dinner and you’ve toasted with your family you could perhaps end the evening with your favourite movie! (or TV Show). Find something that will make you laugh!
Missing your big event after months or maybe years of planning is a crushing blow. There’s no doubt that this is a very sad time for everyone. COVID-19 is changing lives and is a huge worry but your day was very special and it is important that you recognise this. Celebrate the day. And stay safe!