keep-calm-and-plan

I'm guessing this isn't the first time you've seen a "Keep Calm" poster. I know I've seen them everywhere over the past several years (and, in fact, have a small "Keep Calm and Carry On" notebook on my shelf) and enjoy them thoroughly - my favorite being "Keep Calm and Eat Ice Cream". However, there's something to be said for these simple, clever and oftentimes funny posters, cards and notebooks: they're right.

We all have different coping mechanisms for stressful times in our lives - maybe yours is exercise, or talking through the situation, or stepping back and taking a break....or eating ice cream. But the important part is the part that seems to get repeated over and over and over. Keep calm.

I'll admit, I didn't always stick to that rule when I was planning my own wedding. There were some definite ups and downs, stressful planning and relational moments, and I could probably handled a few of them with a bit more calmness. Sometimes I look around me at the people I know who are right in the middle of planning their weddings and I wonder how on earth they're keeping it all together. Is it a show? Are they going home at night and throwing wedding color swatches at the tv? Or are they really just that composed?

For example, I have an old friend who's getting married this weekend. And for the entire length of her engagement she has seemed so relaxed and easy going that I've honestly been perplexed once or twice. Then yesterday it occurred to me that maybe she's just figured out that a wedding is a wedding and it's not worth panicking over the fact that the caterer showed up with plastic glassware instead of the real deal (for some reason, among the small things that weren't quite what I expected at my wedding, that's the only one I can currently remember) or worrying about tripping on your gown as you walk down the aisle. Keep calm.

It's a tricky business, this keeping calm thing. And as I mentioned before, we definitely all have our own coping devices. In the midst of all these decisions and the planning and the seating chart, how exactly do you keep calm?