Mar 20

How to Kick Anxiety to the Curb and Have the Second Wedding of Your Dreams

Young wedding couple embraced in field.

My first marriage didn’t quite work out as I had planned. (I’m sure you can relate!) But as the saying goes…when one door closes, another opens. Well, when that door opened, the sun was blinding!

Flashes of every Rom Dram movie I’d ever cried tears of joy (and yelled, “Yes! Yes!” at the end) was playing out. When I opened my apartment door, there he was standing right in front of me. (Like Keanu Reeves driving up in his mint green pick-up truck at the end of The Lake House.) In walked my high school sweetheart after 36 years! I was floating on air. My life has done a 180 because of this incredible man!

So, of course when we got engaged, I was so excited to tell everyone! Most people were ecstatic! There were a few Debbie Downers though. I heard…“Huh, so you’re going to have another wedding? Interesting.”

I thought to myself, “What the H-E-double hockey sticks?! 36 years I’ve been waiting to be this happy! You know what?! I’m going to celebrate the way that best fits us!”

Raise your hand if you can relate:

•   You’re super excited about your upcoming nuptials! (yeah!)

•   You have a little anxiety about how to celebrate your second wedding.

•   You’ve gotten a ton (and I mean a ton) of “advice” from family and friends that you’d rather not hear.

I have to say, I had all of these feelings anticipating my second wedding. I’m sure you can relate. On top of the usual overwhelm you experience when planning a wedding, there’s the worry about the judgment you might receive (this being your second wedding and all).

Here are a few tips to help you enthusiastically and unapologetically celebrate your second marriage the way you want to:

1. Allow yourself to be over the moon excited about this marriage and show it!

Some brides de-emphasize their second wedding. Whether it’s the embarrassment of getting married again or the hassle of enduring all of the awkward conversations with family members, some brides decide to downplay their wedding. It’s just easier. (Am I right?!)

Well, here’s a thought . . . don’t you (and your husband-to-be) deserve a fabulous day to celebrate your relationship?! Don’t you feel just as passionate about this marriage?

When you think about your husband, what images bring an immediate smile to your face? (I see you grinning my friend!!) How does this relationship make you feel? You’ve been given this chance at happiness again, aren’t you going to celebrate it the way it deserves?!

When you think of your wedding day what comes to mind? What makes you the happiest?! Come on, dream big! Then plan THAT wedding!

Bride and groom holding hands.


2. Prepare yourself for some uncomfortable questions from relatives.

Listen, I’ve heard it all! I bet you’re getting . . . “Oh, I see. You’re getting married again. Well, I’m sure you’re not going to make a big deal about this wedding, right? Are you going to have another ceremony? You’re not wearing white are you?! Wait, what?! Why?!

Not taking these questions personally is difficult. Handling these questions with grace is the more prudent thing to do. But, sometimes, the negative comments and thoughts seem to get in the way. Just know, what others think should never influence your behavior or self-worth. Take a deep breath. Realize it’s probably more about that person than you. Then smile and move on.


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3. Make peace with your anxiety and know that you’ve grown from your past experiences.

Feeling nervous about a second wedding is perfectly understandable. First, identify where the anxiety is coming from. Know that these fears are valid. My guess is you’ve done a lot of soul searching. You’re wiser and more prepared this time around. You have a clearer, more realistic vision about what you want from a relationship. So, banish any baggage that can sabotage this new marriage. Just let it go.

Second, focus on how wonderful this new relationship is. With this marriage, you’re more confident with yourself and your needs. You’ve made this choice intentionally, not idealistically. Your husband-to-be fills almost every box on that checklist of your perfect man. Focus on that!  Never let your past take your future from you.

Older bride and groom embracing on beach.

4. Decide what YOU really want this wedding to be.

Reflect on who you are now and what you really want for you both . . . And then, throw yourself the wedding of your dreams!

Things don’t have to be complicated, they really don’t. Once I snapped out of feeling like I had failed, gave myself permission to embrace who I am (and feel good about who I had become), I became unapologetic that I hadn’t followed the normal matrimonial path. Who made up those rules anyway?!

I realized, it’s NOT about what others think you should do. It’s actually the freedom you have to make the choices that work best for you and your husband-to-be!

Big or small. Extravagant or modest. It’s your decision on how YOU want to celebrate! My second time around, I married my high school prom date (36 years later) and I am still floating on air. (Best decision I ever made!) I never expected to be this happy!

So, how will you enthusiastically and unapologetically celebrate your second marriage?

Send me a note. I’d love to hear from you!




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