LPC Is At A Practical Wedding Today, Giving Advice

Today I am over at A Practical Wedding, giving advice to brides-to-be about why their rational, conscious mothers might behave unusually during wedding planning. It is, of course, advice from a fair degree of ignorance. I’ve never been a mother of a bride. But mothers, I believe, are mothers. And we have a certain understanding for each other.

Please come visit here, if you feel so inclined.

Have a wonderful weekend.

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  • I really enjoyed your take on mothers and weddings over there, especially this: “Maybe now she wants a moment to mark what she did right. A moment when she can feel, this is MY daughter and she is getting married and these aspects of me, the mother, will have their 6.5 hours in the limelight. It’s even possible that she’s using the, “But honey, I thought it was what YOU would like!” gambit as a way to insert her own wishes. Not our shining hour, mothers, but it happens.”

    My mother is rather the opposite of most mothers-of-the-bride in that respect. She is very, very shy and avoids the limelight altogether. When X and I became engaged she had a mild panic attack and, although I did most of the planning, spent the next several months feeling very overwhelmed and having nightmares about it that were hilarious to me but, I’m afraid, terrifying to her. And it was not a large wedding at all, but a very low-key, quiet, informal affair–a church wedding followed by a sit-down dinner for about sixty people, with a string quartet for music.

    But I have a wonderful picture of her coming down the aisle in a wonderfully-tailored suit of dark teal wool, on my chubby, bespectacled 12-year-old brother’s arm, smiling slightly but pleasantly, to take her seat up front. She is wearing a silver brooch in the shape of a harp on her lapel which I had bought in Ireland on a semester abroad and given to her for Christmas. She has always had a tendency to live vicariously through her children, and at that moment I believe she knows she has done right, that she is proud of me for striking out on my own so young, and with so little except for my wits and an impoverished graduate student husband who is somewhat beyond her understanding but with whom she trusts her daughter. Over the years, they’ve had their disagreements, but I believe she is proud of me for having chosen well and had a good marriage, even without grandchildren.

  • I am very happy to be the Mother of the Groom! I’m just trying to stay out of the way!

  • That is a brilliant post, your suggested phrasing for the daughter to speak with her mother is *perfect* Miss Privilege. Oh, we are making karmic contact with the appropriate forces to enhance the chances that you be thrown into the grandmothering role. :)

  • 1. I love that post. Your writing style is so fun and so intelligent.

    2. I love that photo of you even more.

  • I loved your post about mothers and weddings. Your phrase about suddenly you realize your mother is “frail” resonated with me deeply.
    My mother and I planned my wedding harmoniously. She picked out my dress and mailed it to me. (I lived in Seattle and she in Ohio and the dress came from NYC). It was perfect.

  • Beautiful insights, Lisa. I lost my mom two weeks ago today. The family of origin is a mightly strong underpinning for all that follows.

    6:46 pm
    Marieanne said...

    I’m sorry for your loss, Laura, and I wish you peace.

  • Sage, as always, LPC. I wish I had known about APW when I was engaged. Oddly enough, I started reading Privilege at some time during my engagement (late 2008-early 2009). It was early in its history, I recall the archives being quite brief, but I was hooked on your writing from the start and kept coming back for more. I have never been disappointed.

    As ridiculous as it sounds, considering I don’t know you and I am young enough to be your daughter ;-), I am so proud to see what a force you’ve become in the blogging world. Its been such a pleasure to watch.

  • well, that was lovely and made me all misty. Plus, you write like a dream.

  • We just placed the order for the wedding dress today, so your post was VERY timely for me. In my case, it has taken daughter and I all week to find a time that we could get together simply to play the order. The dress is very K. and much more so than the ones she tried on in January. Weddings are difficult because we are expected to have little say, but pick up the tab. You captured the mother’s emotions…so well.

  • Weddings and Mothers – the two make wonderful companions when married with fun, laughter and respect. I enjoyed your piece over at Practical wedding. My own mother is so joyous and happy like islands in sun. She knows when to step aside and when to dominate;-)
    Have a grand weekend!

  • Oh dear. I went over and read a few articles on the site. My army son had a quicky private church wedding in December, and they are planning a reception for the fall when he returns from overseas. Now, new issues for me to worry about! What if they have a dollar dance! My family doesn’t do that – Ack! bad taste!
    When he first started dating his wife, my oldest and daughter and I were skeptical and snarky. After he made it clear that this was serious, we straightened up our act and re-framed it as “she’s not taking him away — our family is getting bigger,” and that made a tremendous difference, and everything has been fine since. Lots of emotions involved, that’s for sure.

  • I found the links to the mother-in-law posts most interesting.

    My son broke up with his girlfriend a few months ago and I’ve been unhappy about that. Of course I’d rather he didn’t stick with someone when it wasn’t going to work out, but he’s not the easiest person to get along with and I was relieved he’d found someone, except I guess he didn’t.

    So I read the characterizations of mothers-in-law wondering if somehow I was guilty of some transgression — which is stupid because they were never married and I always welcomed into our family.

  • Staircase Witch – That is a wonderful image. And she wore the brooch you gave her. So vivid. Dark teal seems the perfect shade for a shy woman to wear for her moment in the spotlight. I have no doubt she’s very proud of you.

    CashmereLibrarian – From reading A Practical Wedding, sometimes I think it’s a bit damned if we do and damned if we don’t:). I think as long as your son is saying it’s all good, it’s all god.

    TPP – Oh thank you. Thank you. And I love that you use the word karmic:).

    The Gold Digger – Well thank you very, very much. I should wear sequins more often, perhaps?

    laura – I am very, very sorry for your loss. Thank you. I hope it gets better.

  • kate – Thank you. How nice that your experience was so harmonious.

    Austyn – Oh my goodness. I love making someone proud. It’s a far from ridiculous as possible. Life is made better by our pride in others, it’s such a generous act. I started writing Privilege in February of 2009. You must have been here with me all along. Thank you.

    Marieanne – Thank you for looking out for the community here. And for your kind words.

    Terri – Oh how EXCITING! I get the part about picking up the tab.

  • English Vers – Your mother sounds just wonderful.

    Genuine Lustre – Good for you guys, straightening up and supporting your boy. We can’t always be all perfect all the time, it just matters that we pull it together for those things that count. I hope you have a fab time at the reception. Without dollar dances:).

    RoseAG – Aaack! As mothers we are so often ready to think it’s our fault. I wish we could designate one day of the year Guilt Free Mothering Day. Lord knows I need it. More than flowers:).