Confessions of an Engaged Wedding Planner // 10 Things That Happen in the First Week of Being Engaged

It’s been one week since we got engaged and what a week it was!

As a wedding planner, the most common thing I always tell engaged couples is to take it slow and take it all in before jumping into planning as eager and excited as everyone can be. I thought it would be great to dive into some of the feelings, experiences and yes, planning that happened in this first week!

Here are 10 things that happened in our first week of being engaged:

1 . Bliss

I am so grateful that we had our trip to Niagara-on-the-Lake already booked to celebrate our five year anniversary. It was so wonderful to just get away and spend some time alone taking it all in. It does take time to process this big milestone and of course I wanted to hear all of the details of Nick’s planning and process. We had such an amazing weekend and returned home to celebrate with our families. I swear I didn’t stop smiling the whole time.

A lot of emotions come up in this time. You reflect on your relationship together, you’re excited about sharing it with your family and friends and yes start picturing the actual wedding celebration. One of the things I said to Nick was that my hope for this year or so is just that we have fun, enjoy the process and soak it all in. It’s a time when the spotlight can be on us and it does feel good to acknowledge our relationship, our work, our commitment to each other’s lives and families, and the continuation of our growing lives together.

2. The Ring Obsession

Everyone wants to see the ring, but the most hilarious thing I found about myself is my own obsession with it. I stare at it, I smile when I catch a glimpse of it when I’m driving and I CAN’T STOP TAKING PHOTOS OF IT in front of anything and everything!

Nick secretly took one of my rings to figure out the sizing for the engagement ring but took one that I wear on my middle finger and then sized up from there. The ring is just over a size too big and although we did get a temporary spacer for the back to keep it secure, I need to take it in to the jeweller to get it properly fitted. The problem? I need to give it up for a few days. I’ve been stalling on going and even though obviously I have to do it, I don’t want to part with it even for a few days. Stay tuned if I can force myself to go after the weekend!

The ring itself is gorgeous, Nick chose such a classic design and I’ve always liked the idea of an oval with a halo.

3. Shouting it From the Rooftops!

Doing a return at a store? Picking up takeout? Calling for room service? Talking to my accountant about taxes? Yup, you bet I told all these people and more about the news. I literally cannot hold it in. Some people are very excited, others (rightfully so!) are kind of blindsided why I brought it up? Even if it’s unrelated I’ll mention it because I don’t care - I’m so excited and I want to shout it at everyone who will listen. I’m sure this will fade but it’s very fun in the meantime!

4. The Big Change

Although the idea of getting engaged is projected as a massive, life changing event, it really is a re-affirmation of the existing bond between two people who have already spent a lot of time working through challenges, emotions, joys and milestones of life together. However, in some ways, it can be a big, altering experience. For us, we were not living together prior to getting engaged so it only amplifies the bliss part to be able to now move in together. Our own home is nearly finished with the renovations so it will be a very exciting few months as we officially move in!

5. The Emotional Rollercoaster

“We’re engaged!”

“We get to plan a wedding!”

“People are starting to project their own ideas…”

“Can we do this? Everything is so expensive how will we make it work?”

“The venue we loved is not available for the month that is ideal for us. We won’t find anything that works”

“I’m getting overwhelmed”

“I love you so much”

This week was an interesting rollercoaster or very high highs and some lows. Being a planner I obviously already have thought about this and have some ideas about what would work well for us to have a celebration that is true to both of us as individuals and as a couple. I always say to couples to be gentle with themselves and each other as this is such an intense time and with emotions and money, that intensity can really take its toll.

The almost meltdown was definitely about budgeting and not in the way you’d think but I will just say I think this is why Nick and I work so well together - I’m a huge dreamer and have a taste for quality and style which usually means expensive taste (but not expensive taste simply because of the price tag). Nick is a realist and does very well to bring me down to Earth. Even with the house, he always tried to get us to the vision but doing it in such a way that we can afford it and be responsible about it.

We’ve been lucky that everyone around us hasn’t been bombarding us too much with questions or expectations but if you are in such a situation, I’d recommend just to step away, do something non-wedding related with your significant other and your emotions will rebalance.

The most important thing to remember with all the emotional up and downs is take care of yourself. Take time to do something else, read a book, watch a show, go on a walk. It will all be okay. Regardless of the wedding day itself, you WILL have a great celebration, whatever that will look like, but most importantly, you will also have a great time with your partner continuing your journey together once it’s all over. Don’t lose sight of that!

6. The Planning

I’ve had my eye on our dream photographer for months so naturally I wanted to reach out ASAP. Since we’ll be getting married at my family church, we knew that’s our first stop, followed by a venue that can work for our vision. We are hoping for a June 2020 wedding - the start of summer has always been such an exciting time for me (my birthday is on the 22nd, school was always finished, summer vacation, long days, warm evenings and al fresco dining). The idea of having a celebration in June just makes me feel happy so I figure that’s a good place to start! We were hoping for something outdoors or at least that has an element of the outdoors so our venue search has begun.

So within the first week, we’ve visited our church, contacted certain venues (you won’t believe how many are already booked up for summer 2020), I’ve ordered some preliminary stationery samples, started our website (thatsamoro.com - stay tuned!) and now will think about ways to build our wedding party and explore a registry. We will also have an engagement party in the next few months so that’s another element we get to plan!

Again, as a planner it’s easy to understand why I’m so excited and why a lot of this comes easily to me. I’m really surprised that Nick has so far been very relaxed about the whole thing and not too overwhelmed - it was even his idea to go to the church ASAP! I’m very excited about all the little things we’ll get to plan to make this an exciting celebration for us and our loved ones, but first thing’s first and we hope to have a date and a venue soon!

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7. The Organization

Being a wedding planner helps, but with all the overwhelming information and the focus we need to be able to make decisions if we do want a June 2020 wedding, we need to be organized. I’ve started our own wedding binder that is similar to what I do for my full planning clients. It’s a custom built planner that will have sections for everything - starting with the general vision worksheets and 14 month checklist to the gritty details of ideal menus, ceremony songs and even registry brainstorming. Getting organized has a very calming effect on me (you’ll find me cleaning when I’m stressed out) so this is really helping even in these early stages to focus our attention on the things that matter first. I might do an in-depth post on how I recommend organizing all of your ideas and documents so stay tuned!

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8. Life Goes On

People go to work. I plan other’s people’s weddings. The world doesn’t wait.

Your responsibilities, commitments, good things and bad, are still there. You will still laugh, you might cry, you might fight, but in the end, you’re grateful and can’t believe your luck that you get to spend forever with your best friend.

9. The Love

We have obviously been super giddy about each other and our love this week. I get butterflies when I see the ring, when I look at Nick and when I talk about him. We’ve also really been feeling the love from all of our family and friends. All the messages, calls and visits have been so lovely and it just makes us so excited for this year of celebrating to come!

Take it in, enjoy it, you’ve spent a lot of time and energy being there for your people - this is your turn. They pour that love onto you and that’s just a great vibe to have to head out on this journey together.

At the culmination of our Route 66 road trip across the states!   Malibu, January 2017

At the culmination of our Route 66 road trip across the states!

Malibu, January 2017

10. The “Oh my GOD this is actually happening!” moment

The shock of the proposal and the lovely weekend away of course felt amazing but every day I still have this sense of “is this actually happening?”. We had talked about it a lot, we envisioned what it might look like, but now that it’s here, it’s very surreal. I also didn’t know if it would feel the same since I’ve gone through it and am going through it with other couples, so even though I’m involved and very invested, it’s still not my wedding. I wonder what other moments will give me that “WOW” moment but today I definitely had my first big one.

We did find out that my dad can walk me down the aisle (traditional Ukrainian ceremonies do this part of the ceremony differently, with the priest leading the couple in with the rest of the guests following behind) which means I will have that moment with my dad. Although we are hoping to do a first look beforehand, this moment is so special and it always gets me when I’m on the planning side. I was listening to some string arrangements of songs I would like for the ceremony and when I heard “All of Me” by John Legend with strings (not necessarily “our song” but it was playing all the time in the period during which we started dating and were developing our relationship so we always have a special reaction to it), picturing my father walking me down, seeing Nick and taking it all in, I just started crying and it was my first “ok WOW this is real, this is happening” and I just feel so blessed.

As you can see, it’s been a busy week (add in work, house reno and trying to maintain the everyday routines!) but I am just so excited to be going through all of this with Nick and really looking forward to going through this experience as a planner and a bride!

Now it’s your turn! Let me know below what you think. Did you have similar feelings/experiences in the first week? Something different? Something I didn’t cover? Not engaged but curious about something? I would love to hear your comments! Use the space below and let me know!

All my love,

Khrystyna