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So the wedding is over... Now what?

Whew.  In so many ways it is nice to be done with the wedding.  It was SO much fun.  And not at all what I expected.  But also everything I expected.  It was wonderful and romantic.  But I don't think I really felt like a BRIDE.  I had the beautiful dress that I loved to death.  The picture perfect cake to match.  The first dance.  The rings.  The vows.  In theory, I had everything.  And it turned out great.  But I never felt like the bride overwhelmed by the joy of the moment.  I didn't feel like a Disney princess.  And on the other end of the spectrum, I didn't feel stressed out.  It felt natural to do this all with Mike.

Going into the wedding, I had heard a million pieces of advice and information.  The rehearsal is stressful.  The bride and groom don't have time to eat.  It'll go by so quickly that you won't be able to remember half the night.  Something always goes wrong.

What I found, was that I had a wonderful time.  The rehearsal was so relaxed and fun.  With the group I had, there was much more laughter than I would have expected.  And the next day, the ceremony went perfectly.  Although, there was a small hail storm before it all began, the sun was out by the time we kissed.  Walking down the aisle, I felt like a celebrity.  There were cameras everywhere.  So I tried to just keep my eyes on Michael at the end of the aisle.  The bridesmaids were GORGEOUS.  The groomsmen were handsome.  And my two little cousins who did the reading did a wonderful job.  At the rehearsal, the pastor had commented that my cousins were a little young for doing the readings.  As they both read their passages articulately without a single mistake, I gave the pastor a look which said, "That's right.  Those are MY cousins, BIATCH!"  The ceremony ended with a kiss and a lot of handshakes.

However, there was some confusion after the ceremony in where we had to go.  I was very upset with my mom as she went all the way up to her room before pictures, when she was the only one who knew how to do my bustle.  I'm still FREAKING out that the portraits were too rushed.

But the reception was so much fun.  I had plenty of time to talk to everyone who stuck around past the dinner.  I savored my meal, although I didn't have a full appetite for it.  I danced the night away, and ate cookies.  Although, I do agree with the advice that you should try to limit drinking, as I wouldn't have wanted the night to go more quickly.  But the centerpieces and the cake looked even better than I could have imagined.  The place was great, and the DJ kept the party going all night, while keeping it quiet enough that my dad didn't complain.  All in all, it was a great success.

The one thing that I regret is the pictures.  We chose the photographer we did because she had a lot of fun, unique photos in her portfolio.  We loved the idea of having some like that.  But, in part due to the time constraints, we didn't get any creative shots.  In addition, I chose this beautiful courtyard with a bridge, flowers, and a gazebo, but she just had us stand by trees for all the shots.  Worst of all, she didn't even mention that my necklace was screwed around or that Mike's tux was unbuttoned.  She rushed through each shot.  Maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised in the end.  But everything seemed so rushed.  I just really wish she would have asked us to come back out after dinner if there wasn't enough time.  Instead, she rushed through everything.  Today, she has a facebook status of, "Today's mantra: I am not a miracle worker.  I will do my absolute best with what you give me."  Speaking as her most recent bride, I do not like this status.  Hopefully there will be some great candid shots to make up for this.  But I'm really freaking out.  Part of me wants to put the dress back on, make my face and hair up, dress up my groom, and get some more pictures done.  But I've never had all three of my bridesmaids in the same place at the same time before, so I know there's no chance in getting all of the pictures redone.  I feel like I lost a moment that I'll never get back.  Whenever I think about it for too long, I start crying.  I never thought I'd care so much about the pictures. 

When I started this post, I intended it to be a happy one.  I am so happy with how the wedding went.  I have so many happy memories.  Maybe I became the sterotypical, freaking-out bride after all.  But even if the pictures don't turn out, I had the best night of my life and married the man of my dreams.  So let me end on that note.  Mike and I are so happy.

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