Yes, You Need a Honeymoon.
My heart sinks a little bit when one of my couples tells me they aren't going on a honeymoon. While I truly do understand that it's just not a feasible option for some couples, I just have to get my thoughts out there on this one. Because if it is at all a possibility, YOU NEED A HONEYMOON
If you're planning a wedding, you are likely spending much of your time scrolling through endless blogs, Pinterest boards, and wedding vendor search engines. And gathering guest list information. And drowning in swatches, covered in DIY papercuts, pulling your hair out, and not to mention dieting on top of it. Aaaah, all that wonderful advice and inspiration and pressure! Isn't wedding planning fun?
I strongly believe there is one aspect of all this wedding planning stuff that is grossly overlooked in that stack of wedding planning magazines you have on your nightstand. And I don't understand why, because it's one of the most fun things to plan. It won't stress you out, it won't be the wrong color, it won't be on back order at the most inconvenient time, and nobody else can give you their opinions on what it should be. You won't have to delegate this part to anyone else. AND, it gives you a great excuse to register for that cute new luggage set.
It's your honeymoon!
The thing is, you're going through all of this stress and craziness to throw this massive celebration of your new marriage. You're spending months and months to imagine, design, plan, and execute this party that is really, when it comes down to it, not entirely for YOU. It's for your loved ones and the creation and preservation of memories with those loved ones. And that is wonderful and lots of fun and in the end you'll be so glad you did it- but you'll also be exhausted. And after all of the hustle and bustle and the jam-packed 26-hour day that is your wedding day, when you were the center of attention for 50-400 of your favorite people, when emotions ran rampant, when you trekked in heels and danced barefoot and drank a little too much champagne before crashing into a hotel bed with a pillow that's too fluffy for three hours of sleep before the 11am checkout time and a 1pm gift opening brunch... You'll need a break.
You'll need a minimum of 3 days to recover, if you ask me. Ideally 10 days. Just think about it: these are the first 3-10 days of your married life, and you're going into them straight out of (probably) the most stressful ordeal of your life. Is that really a good time to settle into the mechanical rhythm of everyday life? Getting up, going to work, doing laundry, grocery shopping... And unpacking all those gifts and writing the thank-you notes and changing your last name in all those crucial places. Phew. I'm exhausted just remembering what it was like five years ago when we began our wedded bliss. And I am so grateful for our honeymoon.
Whether you choose a couple of nights in a day spa, a few days in a rustic cabin, the oh-so-popular week on a beach, or a month overseas- I don't care. Just plan SOMETHING. You'll be so glad you did. You will relish your honeymoon from the moment you turn off your cell phone and set your out-of-office email and tell the world that THIS is important. This is your opportunity to raise a glass together and enjoy the beginning of your marriage. To share the stories of the day, of the night before, of the things that went wrong and the things that made you laugh. To let this reality really sink in. To start fresh with this new adventure at hand and leave the mess of the wedding behind you, quite literally. There will be plenty of time to clean up the leftover glitter and wrapping paper later.
And there's always the shiny new thrill of meeting people (be it the desk clerk at your hotel or the fellow honeymooners at the pool bar) and say to them, "Nice to meet you, this is my HUSBAND! This is my WIFE!"
So here is my advice: if you haven't already, sit down together over dinner or coffee and discuss the honeymoon. Trust me, you'll be glad you did.