There’s a lot that goes into planning a wedding. Like… A LOT. Way more than I ever realized. And I’d heard it was important to choose your bridesmaids carefully because not only would they be standing with you and looking pretty on your wedding day, but they’d be the hands and feet of helping you make things happen. And oh my word. If not for my maid and matron of honor, not nearly as many things would have gotten done as they did. Not to mention that they are probably the sole reason I was able to keep my sanity and enjoy the wedding day! To say that Arica and Kelly went above and beyond is by far an understatement. Now please don’t get me wrong… ALL of my bridesmaids were AMAZING and helped SO MUCH with planning the wedding, the day of the wedding (they helped make their own bouquets!), and even after as they helped clean up the reception, prayed for us while we were gone and then checked in on us when we returned from our honeymoon.
But, this Thankful Thursday is for Arica and Kelly. Not only did Arica drive six hours from Nashville to spend most of the week with me, but she practically drove me everywhere. If not for Kelly, the tables at our reception wouldn’t have had table cloths… or, they would have been paper ones from Sam’s (which aren’t bad! They just didn’t go with the theme :-)). Arica (and Kelly) knows me well enough that even over the phone, from six hours away, she could tell when I was procrastinating with something that needed to be planned or ordered, or if I was just all together avoiding it. And she knows me well enough to call me out and help push me to do what needs to be done! Kelly gave up so much time during the week and months leading up to the wedding that I’ll never be able to pay her back, no matter how much baby sitting I do for her :-) Arica became my answering service on Thursday before the wedding. Other than texts or phone calls from Ben, she and Kelly took calls and text messages and passed the messages along to me. It was nothing short of amazing and I HIGHLY recommend this to every bride out there! Trust me, I know it’s difficult to delegate things and not be in complete control, but come the wedding day, you, as the bride, don’t need to be the point person. Your bridesmaids, or at the very least, your maid or matron of honor, should be able to handle most anything that arises. It’s YOUR wedding day and I want nothing more than you and your groom to enjoy every bit of it!
As we drove to my bridesmaid brunch the day before the wedding (in tears from stress and being overwhelmed with everything), Arica suggested that Ben and I have a coffee date at “our” Starbucks as soon as he got off work, just after lunch. Best. Idea. Ever. This was Friday morning and we hadn’t seen each other since Wednesday night. I know what you’re thinking… “Really Sabrina? You couldn’t go a couple of days without him?” Let me explain: There was SO MUCH happening in such a short amount of time and all of sudden I was seeing everyone but the man I was about to marry. And Arica knew that just seeing him could help. So she called him and arranged our coffee date. The moment I stepped out of her car and into Ben’s arms for a hug, all of my stress from the week didn’t just melt, but poured off of me. It was gone. 100% gone.
These girls knew me well enough to know when I needed a push (or 20), when I needed time to process things, when I needed a break, when I needed to laugh, and when to just step in and take care of something for me.
Your wedding day is one of those days that will be forever etched in your memory. And as I found out as soon as Ben and I got engaged, there is WAY more to planning a wedding than I ever thought there would be. And while I knew my friends and bridesmaids would be so supportive and helpful, I had no idea how much time, energy and effort they would be giving up for me. It’s actually quite humbling and I’m beyond grateful. Even with as much as I loved these girls before the wedding, I loved them even more after. Their love and sacrifices make me want to go back and be a bridesmaid all over again for some of my friends because I KNOW I wasn’t as selfless as these girls were for me.
Jana, thank you so much for this picture of Arica, me, and Kelly! It’s a treasure for sure!