I never could have dreamed that I would be getting married during a pandemic. As a little girl, that was not on my must have list. I didn’t think that I would ever wear a mask with my wedding dress. Yet here we are. In 2020, it’s my reality.
My future husband and I are just 5 days away from our wedding. It’s an exciting time, but I have admit the stress and fears that come with this day too. Our wedding experience thus far has been in flux. We have had to learn to be flexible with the number of people allowed at the wedding, the state mandates, and ever changing COVID numbers. We have had to accept the cancellations of many close friends and relatives who were invited as they put their safety first. Even though it is understandable, it has pained us in many ways. Yet we still had to press on to come up with other solutions. I never in a million years thought that I would make my wedding virtual…yet here we are. Now our actual guest list is over 200 people…it’s funny how things work out.
What I am grateful for is the fact that my family and friends have been very supportive to both my fiance’ and myself. Early before the pandemic was even thought about, my mother and her sisters went wedding dress shopping with me. We were able to find my dress in 1.5 days! Then the next weekend we were able to find the bridesmaids dresses and my mother’s gown too. Little did I know how valuable those experiences would be since the world literally shut down a month after that.
Then the pandemic happened…
I have to admit that I went back and forth trying to figure out if this wedding could or would even happen. I toyed with changing the date, but kept hoping that the COVID numbers would go down. I began to pray to try to figure out if we postponed when would we postpone too. I hope that COVID will be gone in a year, but I am not so sure about that. The whole wedding experience began to be mentally draining as I tried to figure out the best next steps to take. And to have to think about all this in between swabbing patients for COVID and doing telemedicine visits.
Then I just realized that at the end of the day, my fiancé and I would need to do what worked best for us. We decided if we had the wedding we would have to have a smaller one. My fiancé, who is also a doctor, told me early on that we would only be able to have 100 guests or less. His ideal number was 50 or less. (Surprisingly, his wish actually became reality.) It took me a while to figure out how to go from a list of over 200 guests and scale it down to 100. About a month before the wedding, we had to scale down the numbers again to 50 guests because of the social gathering mandate in Louisiana. It was exhausting…but we did it!
Now we are 5 days away from our life-changing moment. I am prayerful that all of our guests will continue to be safe and healthy. We have done all the planning we can do. We have planned to be socially distanced and everyone will have a mask on. Of course, we had to make special masks with our wedding logo. (If we are going to do it, we’ll do it in style.)
I still can’t believe I’m getting married! I’m just so grateful for the love of my life and all our family and friends. This will definitely be a story we’ll tell our children and future generations.
Dr. Amber Robins is a board-certified family medicine doctor practicing in Washington, DC, and graduate of the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry. She is a recent Health and Media fellow graduate from Georgetown University and PBS News Hour. She is the author and founder of “The Chronicles of Women in White Coats” and “The Write Prescription: Finding the ‘Right’ Spiritual Dosage to Overcome Any Obstacle” with her own website and blog at www.AmberRobinsMD.com.