Wednesday, October 20, 2010


I woke up at 5:30 this morning in a cold sweat.  The reason?  Another bad wedding dream.  This was the worst yet, and it's been haunting me ever since.  
In the dream, our wedding was a disaster.  For some reason, two hours before the wedding I decided I hated my hair and washed all the hairspray out.  Then I had no way to dry it.  My bridesmaids abandoned me completely and I was hiding in the basement of the venue trying to figure out what to do next to salvage my appearance and get my makeup on.  3:30 came and went.  Then 4:30.  I think the wedding ceremony finally started 3 hours late.  We begged the venue coordinator for an extra hour or two on the reception.  I was distraught and abandoned, and everybody was angry at me for being late.  My hair was wet, I couldn't find my dress, and I just felt frantic and stressed out.  By the time the ceremony started, it had gone pitch dark.  The photographer was nowhere to be found and my husband kept giving me this sad puppydog face.  The theme of the dream was, "I ruined my wedding."  
When I woke up, my mind kept racing and turning over and over all the tiny disappointments of the wedding day - all the ways that I could have been more organized, done a better job, kept bad things from happening. I feel beyond guilty about what I put some people through just to have our dream wedding and somehow this dream made me feel insanely selfish about the way I acted generally.  Sure, our ceremony only started ten minutes late but that was because I freaked out before the ceremony and demanded that we sign the marriage contract before the ceremony - something that could have been done afterwards, I'm sure (although we were so pressed for time with pictures that it wasn't worth it.)  
In the space of about six hours, I've gone from feeling really great about our wedding to thinking about nothing but the (minimal) things that wrong and the (minimally) terrible and freaked out way I reacted to things that went wrong.  I keep reliving the two hours before the ceremony in my head and wishing I could go back and do them over again.  But mostly I want to keep this nightmare from ever coming back.  I thought the wedding happening would mean that I didn't have crazy wedding dreams anymore.  Can't I have nightmares about my unemployment or how long it took us to open a joint checking account or that we'll never finish the thank you notes?  


  1. Having not got to this point myself, but having experienced letdown/freakout from post-event efforts before, I hope this is helpful. But, give it time. Of course things went wrong. Of course you had less-than-perfect moments. "Perfect" is impossible and there will always be something that you can learn to do better for the next time... except that with weddings, there is no "next time" (fingers crossed) so my guess is it's easier to get wrapped up in the imperfections. Give yourself some distance. If you're anything like me, you've probably displayed stress freakouts before... and M still loves you dearly enough to have married you and looked past them. See youself from his perspective, roll your eyes at yourself, and look beyond. See yourself from your families' perspective of an understandably stressed out bride who did her best to create a beautiful and meaningful experience... and who succeeded. With a hiccup or two. Which was to be expected. And which no one cares about in the long term.

    We're our own worst critics. And perfection is an evil insidious thing. And those two hours before the ceremony have probably been forgiven and forgotten and excused by everyone but you.

    Hugs though.

  2. I hope the residual stress subsides. Becca is right, you and Mark created a wonderful and authentic experience. An slight oversight or two is to be expected, and anyone that loves and supports you shouldn't dwell on it.

    Maybe some meditation or calming baths before bed might help.

  3. ::hugs:: If it helps, after the wedding I woke up in the middle of the night after dreaming that all the flowers in my bouquet were rotten and my bridesmaids hated me for picking such a terrible hair salon. (In reality, the bouquet was great, the hair salon ... not great, but my bridesmaids still loved me anyway!)

    Becca's so right, we're our own worst critics. I beat myself up for weeks over silly mistakes long after everyone else has forgotten them.

  4. so eerie. this is the kind of stuff that really shakes you up. i didn't have post wedding nightmares, but i definitely had my share of regrets. i think it takes time to come back from the wedding high. it did for me at least. things don't start to feel normal for a while... for me, it took almost two months. i had so many weird, interesting feelings towards our wedding. Verhext describes it as postpartum and I definitely agree.

    no worries. i agree with the ladies above - we are our own worst critics.

  5. if it makes you feel better - i had more wedding related dreams post wedding then i ever did before the wedding.

    i too dreamed about the strangest things, and woke up with guilt panic!

    hopefully it goes away soon!