The word “industry” has a lot of masculine connotations.
Going back for decades, this country has been run on the backbone of the steel, oil industry and manufacturing industries. In any town, the industrial area will be filled with large blank-faced warehouses or billowing smokestacks.
But at least one industry definitely has a more feminine bent.
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Each year in the United States, there are approximately 2.5 million weddings which drive a forty billion dollar wedding industry.
Flowers and lace and tiered cakes may seem delicate and ephemeral, but they can come with a hefty price tag. A wedding gown from an upscale bridal boutique like Kleinfeld (as portrayed on TLC’s Say Yes To The Dress) can cost as much as a new car; a fully-catered wedding in a nice venue can cost as much as a down payment on a house.
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In the book One Perfect Day, author Rebecca Mead investigates the profitable world of weddings, from highly-paid event planners to profit-generating department store bridal registries.
It quickly becomes clear that the societal obsession with having the fairytale wedding contributed to the Bridezilla culture. So much emphasis gets put on this dream day that people focus on the wedding and forget about what comes after: marriage.
The truth is no wedding is perfect.
No matter how obsessively you plan your special day, something will go wrong. Your flowers will start to wilt too early. Your shoes will pinch. Your caterer will put bacon in the vegetarian entrée. Your mother-in-law will show up dressed in black. Your nephew will stick his hand in the cake before you’ve even cut into it.
And that’s okay! Because you know what else isn’t perfect? Marriage.
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Even when you’ve found the right partner to spend the rest of your life with, you will inevitably hit speed bumps.
You’ll argue about things you never even thought to discuss before you said “I do”. Every year there might be a standoff over which family to spend Christmas with. You may find yourself in a protracted argument over the merits of private school versus public school before your baby has even figured out how to roll over.
Planning your wedding is a great time to practice flexibility.
When the wedding cake shows up with fondant instead of buttercream frosting, shake it off. When Grandma indulges in one too many cocktails at the open bar, roll with the punches and promise to laugh about it later.
Don’t worry about breaking the bank on a pricey wedding, because it will never be flawless, no matter what you spend.
And the earlier you learn to relax and enjoy things the way they are, the richer your eventual marriage will be.
Anni M. is a writer, biology student, science artist, nerdcore rapper, and heliocentrist. She enjoys bats, fake news, cartoon classics, and mushroom hunting. She is currently working on Prism, a speculative science fiction story cycle and is a regular contributor to the blog at Green Bride Guide.
Dustin Riechmann created Engaged Marriage to help other married couples live a life they love (especially) when they feel too busy to make it happen. He has many passions, including sharing ways to enjoy an awesome marriage in 15 minutes a day, but his heart belongs with his wife Bethany and their three young kids.