Stories of the Ex: Making Plans

Darren’s proposal was perfect. I can’t express to you how gorgeous it was flying at night above all of the city lights, looking out between them and the stars. He was certainly a romantic, and he’d planned out every last detail.

I was excited at the start of our date, knowing that he was going to propose, but once we were in the airplane flying around and I was waiting for it, I started feeling awkward. In the back of my mind I was wondering if this was right. I was having a bit of an internal panic attack, but after getting so angry with him for not proposing after he’d started talking about proposing, I felt obligated to say yes. My subconscious suppressed the panic, and I took the leap.

This is the first time I’ve ever admitted to having doubts regarding our engagement. I’ve never even told my best friend that I’d had to swallow that sickening feeling. In fact, I’d forgotten that feeling before it was even over.

After I said yes, we commenced the wedding plans. Darren was excited and had a lot of input, and that made me hopeful and excited again myself.

Individually, I took some of my closest friends for lunch and asked if they’d be included. There were four of them all together, my cousin as my Matron of Honour, and three of my girlfriends as bridesmaids. They were all helpful throughout the process (with the exception of one) but none were particularly excited, though they pretended well enough. In hindsight, I know they could see what I couldn’t… that this was going to blow up in my face at some point or another.

Darren and I had initially talked about having a “redneck” wedding. It started as a joke but then we thought, hey, why not? I’d told my Grandmother years before that I wanted to get married in her back yard one day, and so we planned to have the ceremony there followed by a reception of sorts at a semi-remote camping location. The idea was to have our families bring out their trailers and we would set up a big bon fire and some music, along with BBQ’s and booze. Several of our family members have ATV’s so we encouraged them to bring them along as there was ample space to utilize them there.

I was fine with the idea of having a really sweet ceremony and then a laid-back “bush party” style “reception”. I thought it would be different and a lot of fun, and our families thought it would be hysterical (in a good way!). I was picturing us drinking and dancing and having a real shit-show of a time. But, Darren was surprisingly high maintenance throughout the planning process. He still wanted to have a formal sit down dinner, and it wasn’t until I explained that we’d have to haul in everything from the tent and tables down to the salt and pepper shakers, that we decided to book a hall. I also thought that attempting to have a formal dinner in the middle of the bush was tacky. If we were going to go bush party then we needed to go all the way. So we changed it, I put a deposit down on a convention centre and planned a typical, boring reception there instead.

Despite that change of plans, the process was actually quite enjoyable. I’ve always had a knack for throwing together parties and events, and I was confident that my choices were going to be beautiful. We were planning a July wedding so I picked aqua as my main colour. My girls had gorgeous knee length dresses and I ordered these aqua glow cubes online. I was going to put them in the flower vases (centrepieces) so that they glowed when the lights were turned down. (As it turns out, you could set the colour on these and so when a friend got married later I offered them for her vases. They looked amazing!) I’d placed an order for simple white chairs for the ceremony, purchased Darren’s wedding band, and the romantic I was marrying found some nice poems online which we were going to have read throughout our vows.

I may have been viewing the world through rose coloured glasses, but that didn’t change the fact that the invitations had been sent and we were well on our way to being (not so) happily married.

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7 thoughts on “Stories of the Ex: Making Plans

  1. That sounds like a great time! I know a few people who’ve done a “redneck” wedding. I plan on having a formal, but informal wedding someday when I find my prince. It’ll be super small, outside at a fantastic historic mansion, in the evening with a ton of candle light. I want a big long table for everyone to fit for dinner and Sinatra playing in the background. The food will be fantastic. I don’t really plan to have a “dance” or anything. Just a small ceremony and dinner with close family. Or a destination wedding and come back and have a BBQ with everyone. Just keep it simple :)

    I can’t wait to keep reading more!

  2. It may have been painful to get this close to the wedding before it ended, but with hindsight you can see it was a good thing. Thank god you didn’t end up marrying him. I work in family law and I’m here to tell you, the divorce would’ve been awful (and expensive). I’ve seen some divorces with folks on the other side who I suspect are bi-polar but who are not undergoing any kind of treatment. It isn’t pretty.

    The fact that you can write your story so beautifully here is a testament to your strength. I totally admire you. What a harrowing experience.

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