Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Concession to Procession?

The other day I talked about putting the cake cutting on the chopping block. Well, another tradition has fallen under the knife - the processional*. And this really has nothing to do with the history of this tradition. It has more to do with logistics.

But first, let's talk about the traditional reason for walking down the aisle. In most cases, the bride hides away from the groom and guests until the ceremony. The processional marks the grand entrance of the bridal party and bride. Some sources think that this goes back to a time of arranged marriage when families were afraid that if the groom didn't like the bride's face then he would call the whole thing off. So the bride was hidden under the veil until her father lifted it at the end of the aisle and "gave her away". There are other customs, of course, that have to do with various religious and cultural beliefs.

For better or for worse, my husband-to-be as seen my face pretty much every day for the past 4.5 years so he already knows what he's stuck with. And we have lived together, 3000 miles away from my mother and father, for 4 years so no one is really giving anyone away at this point. Plus I don't want to be holed up in a room while everyone is having a good time outside!

We're asking people to start showing up in the afternoon for lemonade and lawn games. This will hopefully give people a chance to relax and mingle. We'll most likely be taking pictures at this time but after that the wedding warriors, the groom and I will join the rest of the guests. Then we'll start the ceremony once everyone is ready. I just thought it would be weird to walk down the aisle even though I had been chilling with everyone for a half hour or so already.

I told my mother this the other night and I thought for sure my feminist mom, whose own wedding was completely non-traditional, would understand. She is under the impression, however, that you HAVE to have a processional. I'm pretty sure I don't HAVE to do anything except show up, say I do and sign a marriage license. These are the three key factors that will make me married. Cake, processional, bouquets are not necessary. I have yet to win this battle but I have not given up!

{image via steep street. I LOVE that the bride and groom were under the tree together as guests arrived. The bride yelled "Are we missing anybody?" before they began their vows!}

*Your personal beliefs and reasons for doing a processional or cutting a cake or anything else are totally valid and I am not trying to say that any choice is right or wrong. For me it just doesn't work with the schedule of the day.


merium said...

This is pretty much my idea too, mix, mingle, chat and enjoy a drink~or even dinner, then have the wedding. I really love this idea. Good luck winning your Mom over to our side!

jamie said...

I also thought about doing away with the processional. but mostly, we decided, it is a good way for everything to just *start*. just standing there didn't feel right. you could come out for games and lemonade, then excuse yourselves 10 or so minutes before the ceremony, cause it will be nice to get some time alone to breath and stuff... then "proceed" back out once everyone is seated or gathered and ready. you guys can even proceed out together, you know. plus, it's another chance to pick out meaningful/fun music.

Eco Yogini said...

sigh- my dad wants to walk down the aisle with me. It's very important to him and I considered saying "NO" (as with you, it doesn't sit with what i believe in)... but our wedding isn't really just about us. or we'd elope.
So- we're compromising. :)
I also spent a lot of time convincing my mom that you don't HAVE to do anything. Usually when she says the words "but you have...!!" I answer with: "Says who? No really mom, WHY do you think we have to do this?"

I've talked to her a lot about our wedding being a celebration of our love- which means a PARTY, which means NO RULES. however, with certain things that matter to them (like walking down the aisle and.... sigh... reading something from the bible) we could compromise.

Other stuff- like having a bouquet, favours, a dance, a band, a rehearsal dinner, a real cake, a veil, shoes (I want flip flops!) etc etc etc- is complete fluff.

after about a year she has come around. So there is hope :)

Stacy Marie said...

Those "have tos," they'll get you every time! I think it sounds like a great idea, who doesn't love lawn games?