I'm getting married in 50 days.
There is no better way to start this Blog - and believe me, I have tried. The magazines, married friends, my parents have all warned me about the tricky final stages: "It'll go really fast."
In fact, my wedding planning time has gone whizzing by faster than Sonic the Hedgehog, on Speed, desperate for the toilet, while riding The Flash's special time-paradox-causing treadmill. SHUT UP I'M NOT EXAGGERATING.
The big ringer came a week ago when a client at work was booking in an appointment. My boss offered her the 20th February and I suddenly squealed like a moron, "Woah, that's two months before I get married!!!" My colleagues looked at me as if I couldn't do simple maths, and the customer looked confused before wishing me congratulations, and then I felt like the biggest boast in the world - I hadn't meant to draw attention to myself. It just fired out of me like errant post-nacho gas. In fact, maybe I'd rather have just cut a loud wet one right on the shop floor, although I probably would have sighed loudly afterwards and exclaimed "THANK GOD!" from sheer relief which is the sort of weird and depraved behaviour that would get you fired on the spot.
Let's just say I'd rather not have done either of those things.
Let me explain the significance of the two-month mark.
Think of it as a kind of eternal Christmas Eve. Even if you're the most anal retentive Christmas planner, the kind that has all of the gifts by July, there are still things to do on Christmas Eve. Even if you've wrapped all of the presents and egged all the nog by 10AM, there might still be things you want to do. Say you want to bake cookies with the family, watch one of the many flavours of Christmas Carol*, head to midnight mass, hand-deliver a card, or even just spend a little bit of down time with your other half. Try as you might, you'll never get it all done in the short amount of time you have left. Why? Because you might be able to control your universe, but you don't control the whole universe.
Traffic, weather, bees, health, bad luck, oil slicks, giant apes, other people, the economy. That's just a tiny selection of things that no individual can control, and all it takes is just one of them to ruin someone's plans. OK, you get the point.
So what do you do at 11PM on Christmas Eve when there's no cookies, the DVD player doesn't work, and you have to leave right now to get to Mass because you have to go the long way around due to a giant ape pouring oil upon some bees on the motorway?
You have to decide. Decide which of those things is the most important, AND the most accessible. If you have the means to make cookies but it's going to take you until 1AM and cause a rotten Christmas Day, don't make the cookies. Come up with a compromise, or better yet just kiss the thing goodbye. And don't beat yourself up about it.
So here at <two months, I am bidding farewell to a few things I had planned for the Wedding day that I just could not do: ambitiously big projects that would have been AMAZING, but meant I would have achieved nothing else. And I'm not just talking about on the day - I mean, I would have spent too much free time on them, missing time to catch up with friends, or time to just sit on the sofa and watch an episode of Gavin and Stacey that I've seen 600 times. Because sometimes that's just what needs to be done.
It means I also have a little time to do a bit of thinking - those of you with diabetes may want to skip this part of the Blog, because I'm about to get syrupy. If it all gets too much, I can think about all of the nice stuff that's happened in my planning so far. That time a project I was nervous about turned out really well. My favourite client squealing with joy when he heard I was getting married. My smart phone-phobic Dad texting me to say he'd booked the pre-Wedding week off. Mum and I making a dress shop owner (and her assistant) cry. My boss opening her invitation. Seeing my brother and future brother-in-law getting excited about the possibility of being (slightly) related.
Yes, I'm scared. But I'm scared about the things that are out of my reach, like weather and sasquatches, not about my relationships or things I've left too late. Plus, a little fear can't hurt - providing it doesn't lead to anger, hate, suffering, or disappointing prequels. I'll be trying to enjoy this fleeting time while it lasts, and I hope you lot will enjoy it with me too.