From the Archives, February 2016
I’ve wanted to be a wedding planner since I found out that was actually a job people have (I must admit, Jennifer Lopez had something to do with that discovery). As a child I followed my father around in his industrial kitchens, wondering when that door would open again so maybe I could see the bride, or the cake, or a stupid wedding dance. He catered a lot of events. Mostly it was just hotel dinner service on the other side of the door but I always enjoyed helping out in the kitchen, but when there were weddings afoot, I was that much more involved.
I had my wedding planned when I was 5. I was marrying my best friend’s older brother (I’m pretty sure my mother found the piece of paper I was planning it all out on with the boy’s name on it along with my bridesmaids list and what flowers I wanted.) My friend was a little hurt that he wasn’t my groom of choice, I’m sure, but after you play Barbies with a guy, he just doesn’t have the maturity you would hope for in a husband.
As I got older (and realized that I had to wait until at least 16 to get married) my brains just kept adding awesome things to this wedding that I would have. I now have a binder full of wedding ideas for my wedding then a whole other one for every other wedding I plan.
To clarify, I am not one of those wedding planners who make your wedding mine. I hate those people. I do what you want – but that binder full of ideas is something that I would allow my clients to skim through and be like “oh, I like that” or “I WANT NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS”. That binder contains vendors, themes, venues, spreadsheets etc.
Something you’re going to learn in our relationship (which is very one sided, I do all the talking, I do apologize) is that I love spreadsheets. Excel and I are the truest of lovers. I’m a list person, and when those lists are in excel format, they are so much more organized. I have a very right sided brain, but that right side has a tinge of OCD. Lists. lists lists lists lists lists…
In this novel of a blog, you’re going to be exposed to a lot of lists.
So you’re wondering now why you’re here, what can I offer you in terms of entertainment? Why would you care what a wedding planner has to say about anything? Especially this crazy one who types things like “Lists. lists lists lists lists lists…”.
Well, I’m different from those other crazy wedding planners (I’ve come to understand that we’re all crazy, you have to be to want and desire to do such a high stress job where BRIDEZILLA [I’ll get to this term in another post] is your boss) for a few reasons. I’ve completed a wedding planning course but I am not a “wedding planner”… yet. I got a pretty good gig when I finished my course in the event industry working as an “Event Consultant” for a rental company in the lower mainland. Event consultant is a fancy way to say that I am on the other line of the phone when ordering your tables, chairs, tents, or china. I give opinions and try to ensure that from the rental standpoint, your event is perfect. It’s not an easy job but for now it means I have nights and weekends off, which is perfect because my boyfriend works a 9–5. And he is why you’re reading.
I met Jim almost 2 years ago, and for some reason, he likes me enough to stick around! Jim was a great guy, in my eyes. Our relationship started in a way that is becoming more and more popular: Plenty of Fish. For those of you whom are unfamiliar, POF is a dating website with the premise that there are plenty of fish in the sea, and they should be able to help you find one of them for yourself. Women, if you are interested in joining, there are a lot of great guys on there, also a lot of guys who you’ll have absolutely nothing in common with, then some who are just interested in sex. I actually went on a date with a guy that seemed pretty normal and we had some great online conversations. He turned out to be married with two kids, one that was 6 years younger than I, and he was essentially looking for a mistress.
But you don’t care about my online dating life (can’t say I blame you, I hated it too), back to Jim. Jim caught my attention with his fist message to me, which is important when it comes to online dating. I can’t say I remember that conversation at all, but I remember what really got me attracted. He got a science degree, went to school to become a respiratory therapist, started his practicum and hated working in the hospital, so he made a life changing decision: after all that schooling, he was going to go back to school and get an education in a completely foreign field. He became a videogame designer. Better to obtain a little debt now than to be stuck in a job you hate for the rest of your life.
Now you’re thinking “what’s so damn attractive about a guy quitting a position to get a lower paying job?” Well I’ll tell you what’s so damn sexy about it. This man decided that while it was practical to stay on at the hospital, it was more profitable to be happy. He followed his heart. I admired him for that alone.
Jim and I decided to meet after a short (yet very in depth) online conversation. We had about four days of talking before we met face to face. I was running late for our first date and I despise being late. I don’t care if someone else is, but I can’t stand how it makes me look. Anyway, I was running late because I was at an information session for a sign language course I was planning on taking and I sent the boy a text letting him know, and apologizing profusely (I was 15 minutes late and he worked next door, it really wasn’t an issue). When I finally got into the restaurant and sat down, the first thing he said to me was “So, sign language?” He dove right in, he needed to know what made me tick. OH! And that smile! I could get high off of that grin. If nothing else attracted me to him, it was that stupid smile.
Anyway, that was May 6th, 2014, the most important day of my life, because it was the day that I met the man I intend on marrying.
Over the past two years, our relationship developed the way many do. He avoided all physical contact until the 5th date, which I found bemusing, but near the end of the date, after we had spent HOURS walking around a bird sanctuary and he came back home with me to watch the Lion King (that is not a euphemism, we actually watched Lion King), part way into the movie, he grabbed my hand. Grabbed may be putting it lightly. He snatched, he hastily took, he seized my hand. It was not a gentle, swift moment. Out of nowhere, my hand was suddenly his. After that, he wasted no time, he was kissing me and I think maybe trying to suffocate me. At one point, he was just so excited he was shaking; I had to peel him off and make him take some deep breaths.
We celebrated his birthday, he asked me (in the most adorable way possible) to be his girlfriend, he was introduced to my friends, we celebrated my birthday and I agreed to be his girlfriend, I said “I love you” for the first time, and he didn’t say it back. To be fair to Jim, my prelude to the “I love you” was “you’re not allowed to say this back to me, unless you mean it.” I was kinda hoping he’s say it anyways. It took him a few weeks to reciprocate the “I love you”, he said that he was on the bus and just kind of realized that he loved me. I hope it wasn’t the smell of urine that reminded him of me…
We did all the regular coupley things: met each others families, celebrated our first anniversary with a trip away, moved in together, you know, the normal stuff. And now we’ve come to this. The big step.
We’re almost at the two year mark, we have a trip planned to the Dominican, and we both know that we intend to spend the rest of our lives together. He’s always taken his sweet time to do things and I’m impatient, so I’ve taken this task upon myself. I am proposing to Jim on Leap Day.
There’s this snazzy little Irish tradition where women can take control of the relationship on Leap Day and propose to the man. Seeing as how Jim has an Irish passport, it seems only fitting to adhere to as many traditions as possible!
So welcome into my life. If you choose to stick around, you’ll get to hear about a wedding planner plan her own wedding. This is going to be hell, but mostly only for me.