I don’t even think I am smiling inside …….

If you are hoping for an up-beat blog post, this is definitely not going to be the one for you.

I get to act like a spoilt eleven year old and have a bitch and a whine every now and then.  I don’t always have to wear my big girl panties.  This is one of those self-indulgent “poor me” moment  …

I am so over this entire wedding planning thing I really really could scream.

I am terribly frustrated and even more frustrated when I look at what I have done from the engagement date until now.  I have achieved absolute nothing.  However I feel like I have been running at 100km an hour for three weeks, only to find myself in the exact same location, but just more jaded and disillusioned.

On the upside I do have a dress … well sort of.

When I started the dress-hunt I was fine with anything – really that is what I thought.  I thought I would be fine with anything – who needs a wedding dress right?

I started on the lower end of plain.  Once I started trying on the dress, I realized that maybe there was a bit of princess inside me.  Maybe I did want the entire white huge dress, the tiara, the totally over the top dress – maybe I did, no matter what personality type I appear to be, and what people were used to be wearing.

I tried on one dress that was not too over the top, but was so purely princess fairytale, it did make my eyes water a little bit. I just wanted to leave it on and wear it forever – I think I might even have swooned a bit.

But with big dreams and big dresses, comes bigger price tags, so I scaled it down and did not make an emotional decision.  I stayed in my head-space and not in my heart-space, and decided on something that if I wore the right shoes I could wear it out for pizza afterwards.

The truth be told, I still do not actually have a dress – I have an option of a dress.  I do not have the dress, because something in my psyche is fighting against me actually paying for the dress.  Having the dress will mean that I am actually going to be part of this wedding, and there will be a wedding.  Right now I am not convinced, based on the lack of some basic fundamentals one needs to have a wedding.

I have the pay-for-your-dress-email sitting in my in-box flashing at me every time I look at it that I need to pay for my dress or else ….

The other reason the dress seems pretty unnecessary, is that we do not have a location.  So this might be one of those “all dressed up and no where to go” situations one reads about.  Venue is rather critical in a wedding.  You can’t do this like an underground rave party and just arrive and decide that this is where you are going to plug in the speakers, and there is where you will sell the ecstacy.  Weddings really do not work that way, pity, but they don’t.

I do not have a location as nothing that anyone appears to quote me on is within our budget.  I do not actually know what our budget is, other than less than I am able to get costings on.  I agree that a venue for 6 – 8 hours should not cost your than your monthly or yearly bond payment.  I really get that.  But there seems to be this impossible divide between what is available, and what we can afford.

And everywhere I look are these wonderful photos of these brides in beautiful dresses, cavorting around some divine venue, having wonderful photos taken – everyone is happy and shiny.

Then when I look at the costs of the venues I go back to re-look at the photos as I wonder how can that bride look so carefree and her bridegroom look so suave and happy when they are being charged R25 000.00 before they have even eaten food or drunk some wine?

As my pursuits of these things have discovered, R25 000.00 is not even the top end of the venue fees that are out there, but either way it is far out of our budget.

I cannot bear the thought of getting married somewhere sad and tragic just because it is affordable, rather than somewhere that is going to be romantic and heavenly.  I want it to be divine as I walk down the aisle even if it is unescorted.  I have fought against this for years, now that I have decided to give in, why can’t I be swept away instead of being dragged down by the costs of everything?

Why can’t I have parents who just say – this is your wedding, go and pick the dress you want, don’t worry, of course we will cover it.  Don’t worry about the venue cost, pick anything you like, we will cover it.

So I lament the lack of silver spoon I was born with, and feel angry that we have to pay for our own wedding when we are not exactly in the best financial position of our lives.

Being on maternity leave last year, which I like to affectionately call 4 months unemployment, can leave a less than desirable dent in your bank account and cash flow.

I want to look at the wedding photographs and sigh a little rather than cringe when I see the neon Spur sign in the background.

I am so over googling everything wedding related that I could scream – and scream and then scream some more.

I was so sure I would not buy into all this hype – I would be fine to whip on a pair of black pants a neat shirt and skip into the reception.

Well, Pandora has been released it would seem and there is a reluctant bride lurking in all of us.  I want the dress, the bos blomme, I want the professional makeup and hair person.

I want to prance around like a princess and feel absolute ridiculous for one day.  I want to relish this divine day that I have been waiting for … yes waiting for… for what feels like forever.

But the day approaches, and I am starting to feel as dark as foreboding as I can guarantee the weather will be on that day.

I am exhausted by it all, and I just want to climb off the bus, say thanks and go and enjoy a large glass of wine.

How can such a happy occasion be turning into something that just wants to make me cry and scream in frustration and anger?

As it stands, I have no dress, no ring, no venue, no patience, but I have a four meetings scheduled with a wedding officer I met in a parking lot, so right now it’s all pretty magic!

Leave a comment


  1. ttcnot2easy

     /  April 20, 2010

    Oh man – I’m so sad that you are going through this! Such a special day and you are struggling so! Wish I had a magic wand…
    There’s a bride fair at the CTICC on 01 May – worth taking a look!

  2. Kennith

     /  April 19, 2010

    Celeste puts too much pressure on herself, we are only in week 3 of a 15 week process. Achievments to date:
    photographer – check
    wedding dress – checkish
    preacher guy – check
    wedding location – at least 3 options so far
    wedding invites – organised and being briefed in on Thursday
    friends who are excited to be at our wedding irrespective of how lavish – check
    Everything will be sorted within the next 12 weeks and Celeste will be stressed every step of the way and I will love her regardless!!

  3. Hey great info! cool site! take a look at mine! http://groomweddingspeechh.com, thanks in advance, and sorry for any inconvinience!

  4. Ag ja, wat kan ons sê. It’s a tough one organizing the venue. I would suggest small, but exclusive. Worked for us.

  5. I believe that wedding stress is preparation for marriage – you get a taste of compromise and negotiation.

    You’ve been doing all of that for quite some time now so I’m sure once this passes you’ll use your skills as mom and long-term-partner to plan the wedding of your dreams!

    • reluctantmom

       /  April 19, 2010

      At the moment I feel this is some awful test I am failing. I so wanted us to get married, now it is happening and I am losing my mind 3 weeks in. I totally feel the panic, and the “what am I doing?” – you would swear we have just got together the way I am carrying on. Geez Louise!!!! I am also totally having “run away bride” syndrome!

  6. Kiara

     /  April 19, 2010

    I got married 4 years ago at Avianto in Muldersdrift, Johannesburg.

    I am not sure what weddings cost right now and what your budget is etc. but what I can say is that you can have a dream wedding on a budget… and it can be great.
    Our budget was R 30 000 for everything (my parents didnt pay anything – they couldnt afford to and that is what my DH could spend).

    Our wedding was in July (winter) which made venue hire much cheaper and we got loads of free stuff as it is a quiet season. I hired my dress instead of buyin, I made thank you gifts myself as well as the invitations with the help of friends.

    People were shocked that I had my wedding for R30 000 for so cheap and it was so nice (avianto is very expensive and exclusive.)

    Dont want to bore you and I dont fully know your situation but just wanted to encourage you that it can be done 🙂 You are so organised that you will have a stunning day even if it costs almost nothing!!!

    Hope things start coming together 🙂

    • reluctantmom

       /  April 19, 2010

      Thanks, I do need a little light at the end of my tunnel, as I am truly having a bitch and whine day. I am sure if I just leave it for a few days and let some of the irritation pass, I will start feeling a bit more up-beat, just not today.

  7. Nicky

     /  April 19, 2010

    I totally understand you wanting everything to be perfect, it’s normal. And dont settle for a dress you can wear to have pizza in afterwards, PLEASE!!!

    That being said, I’m sure you’ll find something that’s beautiful and affordable(venue) Have you had a look at the little Pink Book(giggle) http://www.littlepinkbook.co.za
    It’s, a brochure with everything wedding related,in Cape Town-it might help.

    Good luck. I wont tell you to relax, because you wont anyway, but have a look at this.

    • reluctantmom

       /  April 19, 2010

      Thanks I will have a look at the link – I even tried a place way out in Riebeek’s Kasteel – as I figured they were trying to get themselves going as a wedding venue, and it was winter and and and ….. I am waiting for a response.

      • Nicky

         /  April 19, 2010

        Oh yes, one other thing- I have a friend who is EXCELLENT at organising things. she did her own favours and things for her wedding, and it was STUNNING! she’s a stay at home mom, so she has some time on her hands-let me know if you want her number, she is truly brilliant! For like the little things that you dont have time to do on your own.


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