12 May Ceremony options during Covid 19
IECS member and Ethical Celebrant Clara Malone of Coastal Ceremonies outlines some of the options available to couples who have had to postpone their wedding ceremony due to Covid 19 restrictions.
When Life Shuts a Door, Open It. That’s How Doors Work
When we celebrated the New Year on January 1st, we never envisaged 2020 would be so challenging. And it’s only May!! The Covid-19 Pandemic is unprecedented for every one and hopefully there is an end to this global crisis in the not too distant future. I personally feel the updates on easing government restrictions was somewhat positive, in that there is a clear road map, so as long as we all adhere to the guidelines, we may see smaller social gatherings taking place during the summer (July 20th onwards).
Everyone is facing their own challenges, in relation to health, family, work and restrictions. In our area of work we have seen incredible change with weddings being cancelled and re-scheduled daily. It’s a really worrying and stressful time but as the saying goes “This too shall pass”. We know the World is forever altered and we are already learning to fully appreciate things and people we took for granted; family, touch, friendship and kindness.
Something else doesn’t change, Love (however soppy that may sound). I know we joke that being cooped up with our other halves for 24/7 is testing, and yes for some it definitely is. But it’s also a time to enjoy each other’s company more and for a lot of people, re-plan a wedding.
Try not to panic, there is always an option.
I know from my own experience of planning our wedding the time and effort that goes in to it. It’s such an exciting time and to see so many couples having to make very difficult decisions about their weddings, is heartbreaking. But with the greatest will in the World, you will still have your day. There are so many people with great advice out there and there are so many options to mark your special day; the one you had spent months or years planning and the “new look” wedding day which will be everything you have dreamed of and more.
What should I do first?
If you are in the unexpected position of having to re-schedule your wedding, first of all get in touch with your venue or wedding planner. Once you have a provisional backup date, contact all of your suppliers. The wedding industry is full of the most accommodating and decent suppliers who will do their best to accommodate each couple and if they are not available for your new date will recommend other brilliant suppliers. If there are one or two suppliers you have had your heart set on for years, I suggest you contact them along with your venue to see if you can make a new date work. Your day will happen, maybe not on the date or year you originally planned but it will still be an amazing day. ❤
How can I mark my original wedding day?
There are also some great options out there for people who want to mark their original date but restrictions mean they can’t leave the house or travel far from their house:
- Dress up, open a bottle of (whatever you want), put on your favourite songs and have a party “a deux”.
- Invite all your friends and family on to a zoom party and ask everyone to say a few words of advice for you both as a married couple.
- Ask a celebrant to officiate a ceremony via Zoom. You can have your bridal party, family members and friends “zoom” in and include readings, songs, vows and rings. It will be different, it won’t be what you planned, but it will be fun.
- Do nothing if you feel like it. Some days are more difficult than others.
Smaller wedding options
Everything is so new for everyone but bear in mind that all of your suppliers will bend over backwards to help each couple out bearing in mind Government restrictions. You may have to forego some aspects you had planned but as long as your other half and you are there, that is the most important aspect. Also, week day weddings are the “new trend”. I really don’t think people are going to mind what day of the week a wedding is as we are so starved of any type of celebration (the face to face kind)When restrictions are lifted somewhat and small gatherings of people are permitted (according to Gov.ie that could be as early as July 20th) maybe consider a ceremony in your garden or somewhere close by (depending on travel and venue restrictions at that time) with a small number of guests led by a celebrant and then plan a larger party next year. Or when the registry offices re-open, you may decide to legally manage your paperwork at your local registry office on the original date of your wedding and plan a celebrant led ceremony and party in your venue next year. We can create a ceremony to celebrate your wedding including vow and ring exchanges, and kick start a day of celebrations.
In the meantime, stay safe, stay healthy, keep social distancing and if you have any questions or concerns I am happy to help in any way I can. Remember, we are all in this together. x
Photo credit: Molton Sky Media
About the Author
Clara Malone is an IECS member, based in Ennis Co. Clare. She has officiated over 50 ceremonies in some of Ireland’s most beautiful venues and locations. For more information on Clara please visit her website or contact her at the details below.