My husband and I met in a lovely combination of the old traditional way and modern-day social media. I first met his mother, then creeped on him on Facebook, then we started talking through Skype. Cameron, my husband, was deployed when we first started talking. He lived in Kentucky and was finishing up a deployment in Afghanistan. When we finally met, in person, months later, it felt like destiny.
Fast forward three years… our long-distance relationship had turned into a long-distance engagement. Two years of wedding planning kept me busy, as Cameron was deployed once again. I used wedding planning as an escape from the worry and loneliness that deployment brings. I read every magazine, website, and blog, watched hours of “Say Yes to the Dress” to stay busy.
I loved every second of wedding planning. I created many of the special elements of our wedding day myself—signs, song request cards, our guest canvas, along with a lot of the decor. I am a teacher, so summer lent itself perfectly to all of my DIY projects. When the big day finally came, it was truly magical—everything that we had dreamed of and more, truly.
But afterwards, I had mixed emotions. Cameron was moving home—I was thrilled to finally be able to live together! But I had spent the last two years preparing for our perfect day….I had no clue how to spend my free time anymore! Sure, Cameron and I were busy writing “thank you” cards, searching for a place to live, moving in, and unpacking our wedding gifts (finally), but I wasn’t feeling myself.
I struggled with this for a long time. Then, my brother’s wedding was quickly approaching. I was delighted to be his, now wife’s, matron of honor, and she truly let me run wild with my DIY crafting and decorating. I was thrilled to once again be creating. Cameron was so supportive—he was deployed for most of our wedding planning process, so he didn’t truly know the amount of time I spent creating things, big and small, for our day. He was excited to see me back “in my element” as he called it.
Then their wedding day passed, and I was once again back to feeling lost. How could I get back to a sort of “normal” when my normal was so different from how reality was now? Cameron and I were now settled into our new place, and it was decorated…now what?
A lightbulb went off one day, as I was helping my brother and sister-in-law sort through wedding decorations. I should keep creating wedding decorations! I told Cameron this idea and he was instantly supportive. He knew how happy creating signs made me and he knew that other people would love my work. I was skeptical, but he gave me a push to get started and told me we would make space in our apartment for me to set up supplies.
I was, and still am, ecstatic that I feel connected to the wedding world—but in a new way. I create custom chalkboard signs for other fantastic brides, as well as for tons of other events, and even just home decor. My desire to create has once again been filled. Cameron has been my biggest cheerleader, too, pushing me to make business cards, sharing my work with coworkers, and giving me time to create. I couldn’t have gotten over my post-wedding blues without him. Now I feel so lucky to help other people’s events turn out as personal and magical as our wedding day was.
Post-wedding blues are a real, powerful, and debilitating thing. I didn’t think what I had read about in magazines and online was true. Taking time to think and talk about it with my husband helped me figure out what exactly I missed about the planning and turn that into something beautiful, fun, and beneficial to others!