I’ve been helping two friends of mine from college to plan their wedding since April 2014. After finding out in late February this year that I was expecting, my thoughts immediately went to their wedding day in August, and what it would be like to co-ordinate the wedding day at just shy of seven months pregnant! The last few months have been great, planning everything via phone and email and the odd meeting here and there didn’t bother me as I’ve been so lucky with the pregnancy, but in the past few weeks tiredness and aching has started to catch up with me. It was so important for me that my friends’ wedding day would go off without a hitch (excuse the pun), so I tried to put aside the elephant in the room, i.e. the big baby bump. Today I want to tell you a little bit about the wedding and what it was like to work the full day at 29 weeks pregnant.
I wanted to look nice for the wedding of course, regardless of pregnancy I absolutely love attending weddings and getting dressed up. The selection in Ireland of maternity wear that’s actually suitable for wearing to weddings, however, is dismal. I live in Galway, and access to maternity wear is minimal, and mostly casual, such as jeans and t-shirts from New Look. The last few weeks had been so busy that I didn’t have time to take a trip to Cork or Dublin to try the standalone maternity boutiques, and I didn’t want to buy anything too early as my body has been changing so rapidly. Online shopping is difficult – I did buy a simple black mid-length dress from Asos, but it definitely needed to be worn with a pair of heels and after spraining my foot three weeks ago, heels were out of the question. My mam treated me to a really pretty navy and mint tea-length dress from Red Herring, which I teamed with a pair of navy flats from Penney’s and a chunky bright blue necklace borrowed from my sister. Comfort was my goal for this wedding as I knew I would be running/waddling around a lot, and the dress and shoes helped me achieve that.
I was up early the morning of the wedding, and even though I tried to get to bed early the night before, my mind was racing as it always is before an event as I mentally run through everything that needs to happen the next day. As I’m still working full-time, it’s difficult to find enough time for everything in the evenings when all you want to do is take a nap! I genuinely thought I would need to go for a lie-down after the wedding meal, but luckily my energy levels didn’t dip too low.
Of course there is always some stress or just a sense of urgency going on in the background of a wedding. The guests shouldn’t see this, and I always make it my goal to be as serene and calm as possible when in public. It still entails a lot of rushing around as you ensure guests are in place for the ceremony, that the groom and his groomsmen understand where they’re supposed to be, and that the bridal party are directed in to the ceremony in the correct order and in good time. Finally, ensuring that the bride is feeling good and calm before she walks in. My beautiful bride was in good spirits as she walked into the church, and had a big smile on her face. Later, on arrival to the hotel, there were quick checks to ensure everything was in place for the reception, calls to the remaining suppliers to ensure they were all on time and liaising with the hotel staff to run through the timings for the evening. Some of my friends were also attending the wedding and worried about me doing too much, and insisting that I sit down and relax, but as I explained to them until the band were set up and playing after dinner, I was still working and that’s the moment I could relax.
I LOVE TO DANCE! I mean I really do! So you can imagine the disappointment of having one or two spins around the dance floor before realising your energy levels just aren’t there anymore, plus you really don’t feel elegant! I’m normally the best person to get others up to fill the dancefloor, but it’s just not possible anymore. This is the last wedding I’m co-ordinating before baby comes, bar a few wedding stationery orders, so I definitely tried to make the most of it. At the end of the night (12.30am for me, 5am for everyone else!) both the bride and groom and their families were all having an absolute ball, so it was a success overall. I was delighted for them, but also glad to be heading home to my own bed!