Emily Carlson

My fiance and I have been planning our wedding for the last year and a half. I’ve been to the wedding shows, my dress is purchased, the venue is selected and our save-the-dates have been sent. Then came COVID-19. At first, we simply halted any wedding preparations. We wanted to see how things would play out. It soon became clear to us that the chances of having the August wedding we planned for were slim.

In the essay, “My Book Comes Out Next Year. Do I Even Still Believe in Next Year?” Lilly Dancyger writes, “I have to remind myself that the possibility of everything ending up okay is no more outlandish than any worst-case scenario I can conjure.” She continues, “If I can imagine a post-apocalyptic wasteland, I tell myself, I should also be able to imagine something like stability.”

Keeping Dancyger’s words in mind, we had to believe in the possibilities next year could bring. Although we may be able to have a wedding by the time this August rolls around, we didn’t want to take any chances. After spending almost two years planning, one more year wouldn’t hurt us. We went forward with the decision to move our wedding to the summer of 2021.

You may be thinking that I would be an emotional wreck about this decision and you’re not completely wrong. Were there some tough moments when I was frustrated or sad? Of course. But ultimately it came down to the fact that I don’t want our wedding to be focused on a virus. I don’t want to worry about distancing from our loved ones, or the possibility of guests not being able to attend because of health concerns. Weddings celebrate love and connection. Somehow, standing 6 feet apart doesn’t scream “connection” to me.

So what now?

I have to believe that there is hope for the future. Whether that is tomorrow or next year, good things are ahead of us. I’m not going to lie to you, with so many unknowns right now, anxiety can be high. I am a creature of habit which means I find comfort in the familiar. Finding small moments of joy is one way that I can find a sense of ease during this time.

We were blessed to move into our new house this winter and I couldn’t be more grateful for the fact that I live in the woods of northern Minnesota. Being able to walk outside each day or open the windows in the morning to see a deer walking across the field are some of the small joys I can relish in each day. I can call my family and friends, I can enjoy all of the movies and shows Disney+ has to offer, and I can try out as many baking recipes as I want. And yes, some of those baking adventures turn out to be disasters and are thrown right in the trash.

To be honest, I have it easy. I don’t write any of this for sympathy because I know there are more important things happening in the world than changing the date of our wedding. But I hope that this can be a reminder that, although, it may seem like life may never go back to normal, there is just as much of a chance that it will. Perhaps it will be even better than before because we will appreciate what we have even more.

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