Don’t Worry, Be Happy

My wedding day was not the happiest day of my life.

I’ve talked before about the pressure to have the right feelings. A bride is supposed to be blissfully happy on her wedding day, and declare it the best day of her life. The wedding dress is supposed to be the best thing she’s ever worn, and she’s supposed to look the most beautiful she’s ever looked. Everything comes with a superlative attached to it, according to the WIC.

Some people may feel “the most” or “the best” all day long, but I was not one of those people. Sure, my wedding day was filled with moments of joy—sometimes even transcendent joy—but it was filled with a lot of other feelings, too, some of which were unhappy feelings. I felt a lot of anxiety. Looking back, it was unfounded anxiety, but that doesn’t change the fact that I felt it. And I feel a little bad about feeling that way, which is ridiculous. I’m a human being, not a robot. I can’t control my emotions on cue, especially on a day that’s supposed to be emotional.

But the WIC tells brides that they should feel a certain way, so when I didn’t feel that way, I felt like I was doing it wrong. It was a vicious cycle that went something like this: feel anxious –> feel bad about feeling anxious –> try to calm down –> not be able to calm down –> get mad that I can’t calm down –> increase level of anxiety because now I’m anxious about being anxious.

It’s not that I wasn’t happy on our wedding day; it’s that I feel bad that I wasn’t happier. I can’t go back and make our wedding day perfect for me, and that makes me sad. I only got one shot at it, and I feel like I failed. I love Mr. T, and I love our marriage, but I didn’t big puffy hearts love our wedding every moment of the day. That’s not a feeling that’s discussed, so it makes me feel like a failure because I didn’t experience transcendent joy all day long.

So I share this post with you so that you know it’s OK to feel however you feel. If you feel transcendent joy and think your wedding day was the best day of your life, you’re not doing it wrong. If you feel panicky and nauseous, you’re not doing it wrong. If you actually vomit, well, join the club.


Mrs. Treasure

Wedding Date:
September 2012
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  1. Member
    royalpurplebride 511 posts, Busy bee @ 2:11 pm

    I have felt this way sometimes too. I was in a terrible mood at our rehearsal. I was sad that our parents were not sitting with us. And upset when my sweetie’s best friend wouldnt get up to talk without being nudged. It was an awful, unorganized day, we were both late for the rehearsal as well. I cried all night before my wedding.
    With that out the way, I went to sleep early that night, cleared my mind and woke up feeling more refreashed. The one thing that made me sad on my wedding day was lack of support from my bridesmaids. Its like I was forcing them all to be there. They were pretty much all unhappy most of the day. And the pics I got from getting ready, my sister still has. And doesnt care to download for me. We also didnt get some other pics I wanted. And our ceremony was extremely unorganized.
    The funny thing is that, through all the craziness, lack of support from our friends and disorganization and lack of a wedding coordinator, it all worked out. When I locked eyes with my groom through the night, all the drama melted away. And when I walked through those doors at the church, and met eyes with him, I knew my heart at that moment felt truly complete. And that feeling of happiness is what the “perfect day” is truly about in my eyes.
    Thanks for sharing your honest story.

  2. Member
    call_me_ktb 106 posts, Blushing bee @ 1:54 pm

    wow, i am so with you on this. i’m late to reading this post partially because i’ve felt like this, too and therefore somewhat distanced myself from all weddingy things after the big day was over.

    i think @Miss Fairy: really said it perfectly ” I wish I got to enjoy the day more instead of being the coordinator of everyone. I wish I could have danced at certain songs when I was talking to older family friends…” I am also a relatively anxious person in everyday life. I also am very organized and somewhat controlling. I had a hand (if not THE hand) in every aspect of planning our day so what made me think I’d be able to shake it all off and totally experience a carefree day disconnected from the outcome of all my planning? not so. how could it be? of course i wanted to be sure all was well and everyone was enjoying all the details we had spent lots of time preparing! it’s almost counter intuitive if you think about it – the fact that we expect so much of ourselves leading up to the wedding day – diy and all of that – and then we’re also expected to be all like “whatevvvssss” on the day of? haha it’s nuts!

    my husband and I definitely wished we were able to let loose a little more and not worry so much about talking to every single person or coordinating anything but in reality, that’s not who we are as people. we still had a wonderful day – everyone else did, too! and i really do look back on it as one of the best days.. but not THE best.

    you are certainly not alone in your post-wedding sentiment though, fret not.

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