I’m so incredibly lucky that I keep in touch with a lot of my previous couples. Keeping up with their lives, seeing their families grow. It’s absolutely one of the most wonderful and satisfying parts of my job.
Julia and I? We go way back and chat on the regular. We were chatting in IG about how she wasn’t feeling like doing much of anything lately, with the task at hand taking down the tree. I told her she had the post-wedding blues. It’s a real thing.
As much not fun as taking down a Christmas Tree truly is, there’s more to consider. You have a beautiful late September wedding, you go on a honeymoon. You come back, catch up, get through the holidays and then WHAM.
I remember after our wedding I remembered thinking “What the hell did I do with myself before wedding planning?!” “What did I spend time on!?”
I suggested Julia, (a spectacular writer) jot down her thoughts on the subject, and she presented me with this masterpiece! <3
The Post-Wedding Blues: You’re Not Crazy, I Promise
By Julia Morin
Getting married is, without a doubt, one of the most joyful and exciting experiences of one’s life. If you’re reading this and you are engaged/soon to be married, your excitement is absolutely warranted. Your wedding day will truly be the best day of your life thus far (even if it doesn’t go 100 percent perfectly or according to plan, which in all likelihood, it won’t!) So my aim is not to be a “Debbie Downer,” but rather to impart some wisdom in hindsight as a newlywed.
I remember visiting our venue to go over final details the month prior to our wedding date.
The venue’s day-of coordinator said something about the “post-wedding blues,” which I laughed off at the time. I was so stressed and crazed with wedding planning that the thought of actually missing it or being sad after the fact seemed insane to me. Surely I would be relieved when it was all over, and glad to get back to normal.
Little did I know at the time just how real those post-wedding blues are.
I’m not quite sure exactly when they set in for me. The days and weeks following the wedding were so full of happiness and utter elation. Basking in the glow of the day and reminiscing. Opening cards & gifts, eating leftover wedding cake for breakfast. The post-wedding high, so to speak. My sister asked me a day or so after the wedding whether I was sad that it was over, or relieved. The answer was I was mostly just so happy with how wonderful the day turned out. Although certainly relieved the planning part was behind us.
I didn’t really feel sad – yet. I was completely unprepared for and surprised by the sudden descent from bliss to blues.
It was around the time that we returned from our honeymoon and got back to “real life,” work and the gym and house chores and our usual routines, that it suddenly hit me. It was over. A year and a half of planning, anticipation, excitement and build-up, and it had so quickly come and gone. Everyone tells you how fast it goes by, but you just don’t quite realize how true it is until your day comes and then whizzes by in a blur of moments and memories.
It’s all so hectic and overwhelming (despite how well you’ve planned or scheduled the day), that it’s simply impossible to do every single thing you want to do, take every single photo you want to take, talk to every single guest you want to talk to, and take in every single moment.
The best way I can describe it is an out-of-body experience. I truly felt like I was outside of my own body, watching my own wedding happening. And truth be told, it still doesn’t feel like it really happened, three months later. That nagging feeling that you were too overwhelmed or pulled in too many directions to really take it all in only feeds those sad, depressed, “it’s really over” post-wedding thoughts.
I’ll be honest, when I first started to feel this way I thought I was a little bit nuts and was just being overly sensitive and emotional, as is typical of me. After all, we’d had a beautiful, joyous wedding day – even if every single thing didn’t go perfectly.
I still looked back on the day as being absolutely perfect. We shared it with people we love and with each other. It was just a perfect reflection of us as a couple. So why should I feel sad or negative about it in any way?
I then consulted the ever-trusty Google. If you knew me, you’d know that I Google literally everything imaginable. And came across a plethora of articles and boards/threads about this very topic.
I came to realize, after reading through many of them, that feeling this way is absolutely normal. And actually very common. So if you’re reading this as a fellow newlywed who has been feeling a bit down post-wedding, hopefully this gives you some comfort and reassurance that you’re not alone and you’re not crazy. If you’re reading this as someone who is currently engaged/planning a wedding, I hope knowing this ahead of time makes you feel a little bit more prepared for the potential post-wedding blues you may later experience.
All of this begs the question: how do you combat the inevitable post-wedding blues?
Some tips I’ve read/heard, or come up with on my own, while navigating this myself:
- Try to focus on the many positives, high points and happy memories from your wedding day. Try not focusing on the fact that it’s over. “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.” Cheesy, I know, but also very applicable in this case.
- Take on some post-wedding projects that will help you to relive the day. Put together a scrapbook or photo album, pick some favorite photos to frame or have turned into canvas wall art. Create a shadow box with some wedding mementos, frame photos or collages for family members as gifts. (We did this for both of our families for Christmas gifts this year. Everyone loved them, and we loved having an excuse to look through our photos again!)
- Write down favorite moments/memories from your wedding day as soon as possible afterwards. I didn’t do this, but read this suggestion somewhere after the fact during my extensive internet research to determine if I was losing my mind. In all of the chaos and overwhelm the day of, it’s easy for certain moments or memories to quickly slip away or become fuzzy. Thankfully for us, although I didn’t take these notes afterwards, we hired a videographer. Which we had not planned to do (I should say I hired a videographer and surprised my now-husband on our wedding day!) So we now have a beautiful wedding video to look back on in addition to photographs. I ugly-cried watching and listening to the vast majority of the unedited video footage because it caught so many special moments that I had forgotten about or didn’t even notice at the time.
- Ask for/collect photos and videos from family & friends who attended your wedding. Organize them into an album on your phone or computer so that you can pull them up any time you find yourself feeling down.
- Talk to others who have gotten married about their experiences – chances are, they have felt the same way to some degree, and can relate/offer advice and support. If you find that you are severely depressed post-wedding or that these feelings are not improving, seek the help and guidance of a professional. (No, this isn’t stupid or anything to be ashamed or embarrassed about). If you’re anything like me, you probably struggle with endings and letting go of things, and may just need some extra help working through it.
Most importantly, remember that your wedding day is just that – one day.
As cliché as it sounds, it’s true. The day itself, although important and momentous in its own right, is not nearly as important as what it ultimately signifies. Try to focus more on your marriage, and all that you have to look forward to together in the future as a married couple. Many people fall into the trap of getting so caught up in the planning and the wedding itself, that they forget why they’re even doing it in the first place. Keep in mind that it’s essentially a party to celebrate the beginning of your married life together. And while it’s fun and wonderful, life does, unavoidably, return to normal soon after. And you have to learn to be okay with that.
One last thing, to sum all of this up and tie it together nicely with a bow: the post-wedding blues are real, they are more common than you think, you’re not crazy, you’re not alone, and you’ll be okay. Although the wedding itself may be over, it’s true what they say that the best is yet to come.
And if all else fails…Google is your friend.
Jules – I cannot thank you enough for this wonderfulness! You can see their full wedding here – Josiah’s Meetinghouse Fall Wedding.
And to any of my other friends or clients – if you have an idea that you think might be helpful to my readers, please, let me know! <3
Guest post: Post-wedding blues- Melissa Koren Photography. You can see more of my work online at melissakoren.com and also on Facebook and Instagram! If you’d rather contact me directly, please email me at email@example.com!