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To the Bride that has to Postpone because of Covid-19 | Sunset Cliffs Engagement

May 26, 2020

I asked one of my beautiful future Brides, Emily Torres, to write a letter to those who are having to or may have to postpone their wedding during this time, due to Covid-19. It’s genuine, and couldn’t be more real and relatable in this time. If you know someone who’s going through it, please share this with them.

A Letter to the Bride that has to Postpone.

Dear Bride-to-Be,

May 2, 2020 was supposed to be my wedding day, the day I exclaimed “I do!” amidst a loving community and the day my fiance officially became my life partner. Instead, the day came and passed with no exchanged vows, no white dress, no crazy reception dancing, no traveling family and friends and no husband. 

I’m one of the many brides whose wedding was postponed due to COVID-19. I’ve heard you are too, and I’m here for you. 

While there are many bigger issues in the world, I’m sure you know: it frankly sucks. It’s confusing, it’s heartbreaking, it’s enraging, it’s depressing and it’s unprecedented. There’s not many places or people to seek advice from, it’s hard to know who to vent to and there’s a lot of decisions you have to consider all at once just when you thought you had all your ducks in a row on the planning front. 

So, for you fellow bride, I offer the biggest piece of advice I’ve learned throughout the last few months of postponing our wedding: take it one step at a time.

Firstly, feel what you need to feel. These times are difficult, frightening and new for all of us. WIth that uncertainty comes nearly every feeling in the book. Fully feel each emotion that comes up. Feel it, process it and let it go — otherwise, all of those feelings will likely bubble up in an unhealthy way later on. With all of this said, communicate your feelings moment-by-moment to your partner. Open communication is always key, but now more than ever, it can make or break a relationship. Be honest and vulnerable with where you’re at — and be prepared for some long, hard conversations that will help you both learn how to support each other best during this weird time. 

If you’re having a particularly hard time coping with change like I was, I recommend joining online support groups too. There’s dozens of pop-up Facebook groups with brides in similar situations, as well as message boards on all the major wedding websites like The Knot and Zola. It’s helpful to hear some tips and tricks from people in the same boat, as well as to connect so you don’t feel so alone. It never hurts to ask for help, to seek more advice and to collectively mourn and move through some grief over your lost dream wedding day. 

Secondly, tackle some logistical things step-by-step to avoid feeling overwhelmed. I recommend starting with your venue. Reach out and request any open dates. Then, sit down with your partner and discuss what vendor you both value the most. Does photography matter the most to you both? Does food, videography, music, flowers, wedding coordinator matter the most? Aside from your love and your community, what are the most important elements to your wedding day? Start reaching out to your top priority vendors to check with any date alignment with your venue. As you get dates back, make your way down your vendor list. If dates don’t line up with every single vendor, look at your contracts. Most vendors are fairly flexible given the situation, but your contracts may also include force majeure (“acts of God”) clauses that protect you. And if dates do align, celebrate (small wins are important during this!) and start to request new contracts updated with your new wedding date. If you have a coordinator, he/she will likely spearhead this process, so lean on your resources so you can focus on tending to your emotions versus logistics. 

Once you have a new date picked, contact your guest list, starting with your family, bridesmaids and groomsmen. We opted to send texts with a “cancel the date” image, along with our new date as a makeshift save the date. Then, assess if you’re going to send out physical invites or switch to digital (we did!). 

On the logistics front, start to revise your wedding timeline too. Unfortunately, you’re back to basics on some of the planning. Create new deadlines for decor, dress alterations, invites, honeymoon reservations and everything in between to line up with your new date. Once you see the new dates in the timeline, things start to feel manageable again. Trust me. 

Finally, make your original day special. For the seven days leading up to May 2, I was filled with major dread. I knew the day wasn’t going to be what I had envisioned for months, and I thought nothing could replace that. And, while yes, nothing can replace a wedding day, we made a big effort to make the day special. We had breakfast in bed, went on a nice walk, took an ocean plunge after exchanging vow-like words, ordered takeout from our favorite spot, enjoyed some driveby visits and surprises from our closest friends, competed in board games and experienced wedding “magic” with a Harry Potter movie marathon. It was a special day in itself and another opportunity to celebrate our love and commitment moving forward against unexpected circumstances. 

May 2, 2020 was supposed to be my wedding day and maybe yours too. Postponing a wedding sucks, and that’s okay. Take it step-by-step one day at a time. I’m here for you. 

Love, 

Your Fellow Bride-to-Be 

Justin and Emily’s actual wedding date, post Ocean dip.

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