I think the biggest thing Offbeat Bride gave me was the knowledge that it was perfectly A-OK to want a wedding that was more personalized to me and my husband rather than something more traditional that wasn’t.
It made me realize that it wouldn’t look like I didn’t love him or my family or his family if I chose not to bow to traditions that I don’t subscribe to.
It allowed me to answer people who said, “But it’s your daaayyyyy” with “Um, not really – it’s everyone’s daaayyyy, not just mine.”
It made it okay to want to make my own invitations, wedding favors and wedding cake – I wasn’t the only one who felt weird paying for these things when I love to bake/make candy/design online art pieces, can do an awesome job at it, had the time and resources to do it, and really wanted these things to be something I made for our friends and family myself.
It made it okay to not want to spend a fortune on the wedding, or invite people that I’m not particularly close to.
It made me realize that, even though I was a chubby bride, that I could still be beautiful because I see so many absolutely GORGEOUS brides who I know are the same size I am (honestly, when do you even see chubby brides on the mainstream sites?). Not only do I see ass-kickingly beautiful brides, I see brides who aren’t covering up or hiding their bodies, and that made such a HUGE difference in my own choice of dress. On a related note, it also made it okay that I didn’t crash diet myself into the hospital in a futile attempt to get out of being a chubby bride.
It made it okay for my #1 priority to be nursing school, not my wedding (most of the time).
It made me so much stronger against the naysayers (“Wow, is that your ring? It’s…um…cute!” “Wow, a red dress? How weird!” “You’re not walking down the aisle with your Dad? What’d he do?”(the implication being that he must have been a terrible father since I didn’t want to be walked down the aisle, which couldn’t be further from the truth)…and yes, I heard all of these while I was planning my wedding.)
This knowledge gave me a lovely freedom of choice that I think I wouldn’t have realized that I had otherwise. I cannot express how grateful I am to have been able to see this awesome community of people who don’t do weddings like everyone else who grew up around me did, and are proud as hell of it. My wedding was perfect, and OBB helped make it so by opening up my boundaries, my ideas, and my perspective.