04.20.2016

About Our Wedding Story

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One of the questions I get asked the very most is “Why did you elope?” That’s closely followed by “Do you regret not having a big wedding?”

Starting with the first question, DG and I eloped because we felt like it was the best thing for us to do at the time. Our engagement wasn’t met with the most excitement from my side. His family kept pushing for a wedding date, saying lets get planning–we were engaged in March so they wanted the wedding during the summer. In Utah that’s normal, but anywhere else, that’s a really short timeframe. I kept saying I don’t know when we’ll get married, struggling with the fact that our families hadn’t met, sad that my parents didn’t want to throw me an engagement party (like all of my cousins had!) and disappointment that they were so uninvolved. I’d been down the engagement road once before and it obviously didn’t turn out well. I spent a year trying to plan a wedding that my family didn’t support. Ultimately, when we didn’t have a wedding date and I hadn’t quit my job to move back from the city, my ex ended it. I now see how different my life would have been had I married that person instead of DG, and I truly believe that all things happen for a reason and that I wasn’t ever supposed to marry him, but when DG and I got engaged the feelings of not having support rose again. DG wanted to go on a cruise for our honeymoon. He didn’t care about the wedding so much, but really wanted to go on a specific trip to Europe, so he wanted the wedding planned around those cruise dates. Eventually that led to me suggesting we elope. While he liked the idea in theory because it would be way less stress, he was really worried about upsetting my family and me having regret after. I told him time and time again that we’d never get a wedding planned otherwise so we should do it and he finally agreed.

Our wedding was a civil wedding in Santorini, Greece. The ceremony took place at 2 pm. I wasn’t nervous about marrying DG but nervous about having to come home and tell my family what I did. I wore a wedding dress, my hair was atrocious because of the humidity and wind, DG wore dress slacks and a blue shirt and we were both sweating because it was so hot. I asked for pink peonies, which the wedding people found. It was really a pretty setting. The ceremony was read in both Greek and English and we exchanged vows in English. Afterward we ate our cake, took pictures, changed out of our wedding clothes and explored Santorini.  It was special and wonderful in that it was all about us, but there are still times that I wish we’d had close friends and family there, sharing in our moment.

When we got home from our trip I told my parents. I think my mom was on the treadmill that evening when I told her. She said “I figured you’d do something like that. Congratulations.” My dad ranted about the marriage not being legal (which he was entirely wrong about). After a couple days that was it. The asked if I was moving to DG’s–I said yes, and continued to commute for work while remodeling a new office in my new town. I told my close family and friends and that was all. My parents told me not to put it on Facebook because they didn’t want people to find out that way, but in all honesty, they weren’t telling anyone either so how did they expect people to know? About a month later, much to my family’s disdain, I sent out announcements to family and friends. I decided that it was my day, and I wanted to let people know my husband’s name and see pictures. I was so fortunate that a lot of my family and friends were understanding, compassionate and very supportive. I’m sure nobody wants to see their child elope, but we had our reasons and I was glad nobody judged us to our faces.

Do I regret it? No. By regretting it, I would regret getting married. When I think about our wedding, I sometimes wish we had the big Greek church wedding with beautiful decorations and an amazing reception full of guests, but how do you even start planning something like that when you feel like your family isn’t behind you? When I first began dating DG I made sure he knew I would only get married by having a church wedding and he agreed, but when he didn’t feel welcome in my family, he started balking, and that’s when I said eloping is easier. I helped my best friend and my SIL with their beautiful weddings and both times I felt a little sad that they got all that and I didn’t have that magical day. Then I went to my cousin’s dream wedding last summer and felt the same way. It’s not jealousy, but I do have a little bit of sadness when I think about what I wish it could have been if I had the support. Then in the next thought frame, I remember that I’m not very close with my mom, so wedding planning would have been a nightmare and we wouldn’t have gotten anything done. Remember how I couldn’t even nail down a date or place on my first engagement? I wouldn’t have wanted a dad-daughter dance because I’m not close to him either. I would have spent the entire day worrying about pleasing my family and not focused on my marriage to DG. So I have to remind myself of those things and even though I sometimes wish I had all that, I know I have a husband who loves me and that’s what matters. I should have let my MIL throw me a post-elopement reception to celebrate our marriage but I was afraid of upsetting my parents at the time because they said that if you elope you don’t get a party, and that is the only regret I have. Otherwise, I just have a whole lot of Greek guilt.

Comments

  1. Angela I absolutely love that you two eloped! It is what you guys needed. Big weddings are stressful, even when both sides are getting along. Everything happens for a reason. Without that decision you may not have had your beautiful child, and she was definitely meant to be in your life! 🙂

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