lifestyle

Low Budget, Low Faff Wedding

I honestly couldn’t be more content. I’m engaged to a man I adore, we live in our own Victorian house that we’re currently renovating and things couldn’t be better – well, we’re technically poor as I am unable to work, but we’re not in any debt (aside from our Mortgage, which doesn’t reeeeally count) and we’re living inside our means without going without and we want to keep it that way!

With all that in mind, I’ve started delving into the world of wedding planning.

I should caveat that statement with a statement about my hatred (bit strong) for weddings in general. You see, being Autistic, I find socialising incredibly stressful – so you can imagine how weddings can cause adverse reactions in someone who struggles with social situations; I’m also a goth and naturally find that anything frilly, faffy, puffy and white sends shivers down my spine. I just don’t understand the “pinterest wedding” trend of this modern world we live in. Even most of the Rock N’Roll Bride weddings are too weddingy for my dark, dark tastes. (I won’t be wearing any shade of pale, when we get married!)

Oddness aside, it occurred to me recently that I don’t actually think I want to elope – I kinda want my parents to be there when I get married. Originally, I wanted it to be just the two of us and a couple of random witnesses, but the more I think about it, the more I want my parents in the picture – you only have one set of parents and they won’t be around forever, so I know I’d regret not having my folks present when I finally marry the man I love.

So that now leads us down the road of an intimate wedding with parents and siblings. The thought of saying vows in front of parents and siblings fills me with a feeling of impending doom. To say I’m nervous about saying vows in front of more than 2 people would be an understatement. Urgh. Anyway…

Having looked for around ten minutes online at various wedding websites and venue websites, I can say that I do NOT want to spend more than a few hundred pounds on a wedding venue. It is not that important to me to have the ‘fairy tale’ wedding in a big fancy stately home – I’m lower middle class, not a member of the aristocracy – I’d feel like a massive tit swanning around in a stately home that I’d rented (TWELVE THOUSAND POUNDS to rent the Dairy at Waddesdon Manor, for example!!!!) for a day. No Siree!

Honestly, I would LOVE an intimate church wedding. Don’t get me wrong, I am a staunch Atheist and so is my Fiancé but to me, churches are the most beautiful pieces of architectural history and I would love to have a civil ceremony in a Church; they suit my gothic sensibilities to a tee. My other half has vetoed the idea, sadly. (Also, I don’t even think atheists would be allowed to get married in a church???)

So, where is left? I like the idea of a woodland wedding, but would really like to wear heels when I get married, not wellies. My straightened hair also has a shitfit if I spend more than half an hour outdoors… What is a girl to do!?

If you can come up with some ideas of a low budget venue in the UK (preferably England) then I would LOVE to hear your ideas. Please do get in touch if you can help!

 

 

 

 

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The Great Unease

One thing I have learnt over the past 10 years since being diagnosed with a life-altering illness, is that I am yet to feel at ease with my life. There comes a time in your life, when you hit the big THREE-O and you’re supposed to have your shit together. Well, I thought I had my shit together; turns out, I haven’t.

You see, I’ve always been an old soul. I’ve always known I wanted to settle down, get married and have pets (never children) and while it seems I am on track with my life goals, I am still feeling the great unease surrounding who I am and what I bring to the world.

Since I was a young teenager, I’ve always wanted to be famous somehow. I wanted to sing, but stagefright put paid to that dream – likewise with acting (for which I was awarded an ‘exceptional’ from my year 8 Drama teacher) and performance anxiety has shrouded my life in many ways.

I’ve always had the fear of being like everyone else. When I was at school I made it my plan to stick out like a sore thumb – and was bullied because of it. But I was stoic in that I didn’t want to fit in and be like everyone else, so I took it and it made me strong.

Yet here I am at the age of thirty, wanting, in part, to be like everyone else. Not, in the sense of I want to be in a job I dislike, pay rent to a greedy landlord and have children drive me round the bend, but in the sense that I want to be a productive member of society. (You have no idea how much I hate myself for saying that!)

Living with an incurable, oftentimes debilitating illness means I am not a ‘productive’ member of society. I am unable to follow my career goals (of which I have had many, shot down in a blaze of smoke) and now I’m left with a sense of ‘now what?’

I felt so compelled by these feelings of unease that last year I enrolled onto a distance learning Degree in History and surprisingly to me, I’m doing very well on my first module (If I was studying at a brick uni, I would be at distinction level!) and I’m really enjoying spending time wisely, studying. I no longer felt like I was wasting away in my bedroom waiting for the weekend when I get to spend time with my partner of nearly 3 years.

However, I’m now nearing the end of my first module (of which there are 6 – one per year) and I’m finding myself twiddling my thumbs again. I’ve started the audiobook of the set book for my next module yet it doesn’t start until October.

People think being at home and ‘off work’ is a dream lifestyle. I won’t argue that it has its benefits – I can stay up as late as I want and wake up as late as I want, for example, but I’m also trapped inside 4 walls for 90% of my day and two thirds of the week. As an unworking woman, I do not have the funds to be galavanting around in a car (I can’t drive manual and cannot afford an automatic car) nor do I have the energy to do so.

I spend my days lying on my bed in various positions (shifting when the pain becomes too much to bear) and it’s demoralising. Seeing all those people on Instagram going places in life makes me feel uneasy. In the pit of my stomach I feel the longing to have a ‘normal life’ like all these people I watch every day.

But then, I have to remind myself, yet again, that I’m not normal. I do have an incurable illness and I will have it for the rest of my life. It’s really really hard to balance this unending feeling of disquiet in my soul, with the knowledge that I’m doing the best I can. I have an enquiring mind and I want to see the world – this is in complete competition with the fact that my body was not built the same way as my mind. My body is broken, but my mind is sharp.

How does one reconcile a life wanted, with the life given? How does one overcome the odds when they are all stacked against you? This is something my mind continues to wonder, while I lie here, in pain, day after day.

Brand Spotlights

Over the coming weeks I shall be writing a few blogs about a few brands, designers, independent businesses and friends that I believe need to be talked about and admired.

I am a firm believer in helping those around you rather than competing blindly and carelessly to get yourself ahead. While this may not be the best way to make money, I believe authenticity and integrity are more important. Of course, money helps (especially when you are naturally more disadvantaged than most) but it’s not the be all and end all.

So keep your eyes peeled to see where I shop, whose music I listen to, what I like to drink and pretty much everything I like!

If you’re looking to get your name out there (like myself) feel free to get in touch. Email me at bethvonblack@hotmail.com