Just a small prelude to this edition from Lindy.
Realities of Life at times are not so pleasant & can certainly throw us all a curve ball.
As Lindy mentions. As we get older, the reality is that our beloved parents get older as well.
And a Dad's Dream is to walk his little girl down the aisle to not only marriage, but to her life onwards.
This article from Lindy, (although she states she is finding it difficult to watch her Wedding Video at present) indicates to importance of engaging a Professional Wedding Videographer. Not only for the memories on your day. But for those memories of those who have left us.
‘Oh, you’re still a spring chicken!!’. Even when you’re nearing 50, I can assure you, people still say this!. While it’s always appreciated, the reality is slightly different….and here’s why…. My husband and I were both older when we met. Neither of us had been married before, and no children from previous relationships. It took a while for us to find each other, but when we did realise we were made for each other, it was a case of ‘wow, we’re so lucky’. Sure, it’s a shame we didn’t meet earlier, but better late than never, right?.
Being an older bride and groom meant our parents/families were also older. Sadly, my husband’s father passed away about three years before our wedding. We were so lucky to have my Dad at our special day, because he wasn’t well, and was becoming increasingly more frail. Our aim was to keep him upright, and make sure he was going to be able to walk on the day, as well as have a dance with me, and with my Mum. We managed to tick all of those boxes, which was magical. Our wedding was on 23 rd February 2019, and on 2 nd October 2019, he left us.
There are lots of special considerations you can make for more senior guests at your wedding (ie make sure they are seated away from any speakers, sit them close to the bathroom facilities, ensure there is tea/coffee available for them after the meal, pick a venue with a lift and/or wheelchairaccess).
These are the physical aspects you have some control over. The mental and physical anguish you find yourself going through, in the lead up to your wedding is so much different, and not something you will have as much control over. Older people tire a lot quicker and a lot easier, so my Dad found the entire lead-up to our wedding exhausting (dinner the night before, the actual wedding day, and the BBQ breakfast the following morning). If they don’t appear to be as enthusiastic as you would like, just take a step back, and try and realise that they probably just want a lay down.
At the time of writing this article (ie mid-November 2019), I wasn’t ready to go back and watch our wedding video, which features my Dad’s speech, and our Father/Daughter dance – I’m not sure I’ll ever be ready. I love looking back at the photos, but if I was to hear his voice, it would probably break me in half. So, as I mentioned above, we lost our beloved Dad on 2 nd October 2019 – on 12 th October 2019, it was time to come together for my brother’s wedding. In the lead up to Dad’s passing, he was in a nursing home. A couple of weeks prior to upcoming wedding, we all visited Dad in the home. My future sister-in-law held my Dad’s hand tight, and said ‘just give us 14 more days, please’. But, along with the rest of us, she just knew it wasn’t meant to be. His absence was palpable on their special day, but he was remembered so fondly in speeches, toasts and other special ways (ie a single white rose was given to my Mum, and she held this close to her for the entire day). Dad was there with us, watching, shedding a tear as his son took his wedding vows and laughing as we took to the dance floor at the reception.
My advice, for what it’s worth is this – don’t become frustrated when you have older guests at your wedding, who perhaps, move a little slower than the rest of us – be thankful they’re there. Don’t become frustrated when you have older guests who would rather just have a cheese sandwich instead of the set meal at the reception – be thankful they’re there. Don’t become frustrated when your older guests go home after the meal – be thankful they’re there. Pay tribute and respect to the guests you wish were with you on your special day. At our wedding, we had a single white rose on a chair on each side of the seating arrangements – one rose for each side of the family. This wasn’t just to remember family who couldn’t be with us – it was a way of remembering friends and pets who we’d lost along the way.
If you’ve recently lost a family member, or a close friend in the lead up to your wedding day, take some time to remember them in your own special way – talk to them, tell them how much you miss them, and how much you wish they were going to be there, and assure them they’ll be remembered. They will be there with you, in their own special way. For me, moving forward, I know my Dad will always be with me. Each day is full of its own set of challenges.
In closing, something I urge everyone to consider is this – every person you come across has something going on in their life – we don’t know exactly what this ‘something’ is, but this is why it’s just so important to be kind to each other. A smile goes a long way.