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Why do brides say "I just want everything to be perfect"? Perfection should be the last thing they want. Possibly apart from a yeast infection on their honeymoon.
A perfect wedding would have no guests, because people will stuff up 'perfect' every time. Seriously - just think about your own family. It's not only the weird cousin you've got to invite who thinks that wearing odd socks makes him look interesting and diverts attention from his poor personal hygiene. Every one of your guests, your bridal party, and even your partner are human with a whole range of flaws that are absolutely incompatible with perfect. You've got kids coming too? Kids - especially your own - are professional perfection-wreckers. It's in their kiddie DNA.
Wedding speeches, family politics, bad hats. Need I say more? All utterly imperfect.
Let's take a reality check. Disney princesses have fairy-tale weddings. You, I suspect are not the product of multi-billion-dollar animation empire, but a real live person who has some good things going for them and a few traits that both your parents are convinced came from the other side of the family. Try this quick quiz:
If you were unable to answer yes to any of the above, then take it from me, you are not a princess of the Disney or any other variety. Tilting at a perfect fairy-tale wedding will therefore lead only to crushing disappointment, and that's before twenty years of marriage to someone whose 'handsome prince' status is already questionable, even with youth on his side. Once the evil elves of middle age have bequeathed him a beer gut and ear hair he'll be less Hercules and more Shrek anyway.
Neither am I suggesting you have a cheap wedding. If you want all the trimmings and you've been careless enough to amass a lot of friends you want to show off to, then buckle up honey, it's going to cost more money than a fairy-tale dragon can get his scaly little T-Rex arms around. Sure, you can hire a few hay bales and rent a paddock somewhere for a big picnic with home brewed brussel sprout beer, wear a dress you've knitted out of tofu and arrive in a Kombi van that still smells of backpacker farts, but do you really want to be remembered for your hipster wedding?
Embrace imperfection, which will happen anyway, regardless of how much you stress about it, and your day will be so much more memorable and fun. I'm not advocating that it should fall into complete chaos or that anyone gets injured, at least not seriously, but make wriggle room for the day to be warm and human. Some of the most fun and memorable weddings I've attended have seen the photographer leap into a river to retrieve a ring, a groom dip his bride for the kiss, trip and both fall into a well-cushioned heap and a toddler flower girl stuff rose petals into the bride's cleavage. All of which made the day memorable. (Especially for the photographer who had jellyfish stings as a momento.)
Once your guests see or hear something to make them smile, they'll relax, talk to one another and stop trying to chew their own legs off to escape another dull and dreary wedding. They may even drink less of the booze you're paying for too. Or not, but that's people for you - human and imperfect.
This article first appeared on Wendy's blog, Stunning The Mullet