Love is Patient

Like, really, really patient…
In case you’ve been living under a rock, the year is 2020, we are mid-covid-19 pandemic panic; travel and fun of all kinds has been cancelled, I haven’t driven my car in weeks, I work exclusively from home, and dalgona coffee isn’t worth the hype.
In all seriousness I’m more than happy to stay home if it means flattening the curve (kind of an introvert’s dream), and I fully recognize that this is bigger than all of us. Also shoutout to healthcare workers. You all are the real MVP’s. Thank you.
So, on to the topic at hand: I wanted to put together a blog entry for all my 2020 brides and couples out there dealing with the looming question: to postpone or not to postpone?

 

After a lot of discussion, wine, and tears, my fiancé Rob and I decided to postpone. Our wedding was scheduled for June 13th, 2020. We pushed it a full year, to June 12th, 2021. If you’re struggling with how to proceed, here’s a list of ten things that were major factors in our decision, and may help you too:
  1. When is your wedding? We made the choice to postpone our wedding in early April. At the time I was still a little worried that the decision was premature, that everything might still blow over by our date…now we’re in early May and no promise of the world (Illinois at least) reopening until May 30th…I’m beyond relieved we made the decision when we did. No one wants to hear this, but er on the side of caution. You don’t want to reschedule twice. If your wedding is in May, June, or July, I strongly recommend postponing and pushing to late Fall at the earliest, unless you’re willing to compromise on your vision, see #6.
  2. Where is your wedding? Rob and I planned our dream wedding in San Juan, PR, meaning almost all of our guests would be traveling long distance to celebrate with us. We weren’t willing to ask our guests to travel under the circumstances, and this made it pretty clear that postponing was the right choice.
  3. Who is attending? Do you have a lot of people on your guest list who are more susceptible to Covid-19? 70+, immune compromised, etc? We didn’t want our loved ones to feel like they had to risk their safety in any way by attending our wedding.
  4. How big is your guest list? We were expecting somewhere in the neighborhood of 125 attendees. If you’re planning a much smaller celebration, and your wedding is in July or beyond, you may be able to safely gather. Anything beyond 25 guests, I would strongly recommend putting a plan B in place.
  5. How do you envision your wedding day? This was one of our biggest deciding factors. Do you envision your guests dancing, drinking, hugging? Us too. And we weren’t sure what that would look like if the 6-ft rule was still in effect. We didn’t want our guests traveling hundreds or thousands of miles to be together, only to be kept apart.
  6. Are you flexible on your vision? I read the blogs offering ideas on virtual ceremonies, rotating receptions (x amount of people allowed in at one time, everyone has a scheduled time slot) and while these options might work for some couples, we weren’t willing to compromise on our wedding being much different than we’d planned.
  7. Do you have the ability to postpone without penalty? Contact your vendors ASAP – discuss your options, weigh the financial risk, and assess your timeline. Some vendors may allow you to postpone but only within a certain time frame.
  8. If you do move forward with your original date, do you have the ability to tie up all the loose ends of wedding planning without Covid-19 getting in the way? This was a big roadblock for us. The groomsmen suits were ordered through Macy’s, which is still shut down. Finalizing wedding bands was an issue. Our RSVP deadline came and went, with over 50 people still in the ‘maybe” category, scared to commit one way or another.
  9. What does your gut say? I had a “bad feeling” in my gut from the beginning. I tried to ignore it and look at things logically, but eventually logic supported that gut feeling, which had been right all along. Trust your intuition. You probably already know what you need to do.
  10. If you’re still weighing the pros and cons – ask family or friends you trust. Don’t poll your entire guest list. Ask a few people from each side, max. My family knows I’m pretty strong willed and not easily swayed by other peoples opinions, so they often don’t offer theirs. Lol, sorry fam. When they finally said, “yes, we really think you should postpone”, I was able to trust my own gut saying the same thing, and move forward with our Plan B.
Okay, so, you’ve decided to postpone, now what?
  1. Give yourself some credit, pour yourself a drink, be sad all you want. This sucks. But you still gotta make a plan.
  2. Pick three new dates, a first, second and third choice. If you have a planner, they should be your first phone call. Reach out to them and they’ll help you divide and conquer. I reached out to our two venues, my wedding planner reached out to the vendors. She’s the best. If you don’t have a planner, get your partner or a friend or family member to help you.
  3. You can’t do much else until you get a new date locked down. If you’re trying to reschedule within the same calendar year, consider a date that doesn’t fall on a Saturday. With so many brides postponing, Saturdays are filling up fast. If you insist on a Saturday (Hi, me.) you may need to look at dates in 2021.
  4. Once you’ve locked down your date, tell your bridal party and immediate family. They should be the first to know, before the rest of your guests.
  5. Have family and friends help you spread the word to the rest of your guest list. Under the circumstances, no one minds being notified by text, email, or phone call.
  6. Order change-the-dates. You can get these from Walgreens, Shutterfly – we got ours from Simply to Impress and they turned out great.
  7. Address, stamp, and send. Everyone on your original guest list should get a change-the-date, even if they declined the first time around. Aim to have your change-the-dates in people’s hands a month before your original wedding date at the latest.
  8. Your change-the-date should include: your new date, anything else that’s changing, and a note on whether or not a formal invitation will follow. We have a wedding website through theknot.com, so we’re not doing another formal invitation. If you’re not doing another invitation (my personal recommendation – don’t – make your life easier), make sure to list an updated RSVP date.
  9. Update your website with a note on how your responding to Covid-19 (postponing, virtual ceremony, etc) and another update as soon as your new date is selected.
  10. Expect the unexpected. All in all our rescheduling process has been smooth, but we did have our welcome reception venue for the night before our wedding close completely due to Covid-19. Thankfully a full refund was issued, but now we’re out a venue and looking for another one. Consider backups to your venue and vendors, especially if you’re pushing past 6 months. You never know what could change.
Long story short, you can do this. It’s not a fun process but you’ll make it through. As much as I stand behind these suggestions for my wedding – everyone is different! Do what feels right to YOU and your partner during this crazy time, and don’t be afraid to ask for help. I’m here for you!
XO, Katie
Picture credit: Photo: Connie Marina Photography, Venue: BLVD Chicago, Dress: Winnie Couture, Hair/MUA: Kylie Jordan Artistry, Model: Katie McGinnis

One thought on “Love is Patient

  1. What a positive and gracious outlook in such a uncertain time. You’ll have an amazing wedding and life together with this continued outlook towards life!

    Like

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