This year I celebrate 15 years of being a Marriage Celebrant … and yes I’m celebrating!
Over the years I have conducted hundreds of ceremonies – weddings, baby namings, renewal of vows and commitment ceremonies.
It thrills me that each and every ceremony is so different. Physically different in location, different with the theme, some very extravagant and others as low key and simple as you can possibly imagine and obviously uniquely different, driven by each person’s personality. One thing has been consistent in every ceremony I have conducted and that is the love … love for each other … love for the child we are naming and the love felt in the ceremony space.
Yes, there have been challenges over the years. The groom and groomsmen forgot the rings … we borrowed the two grandmothers wedding rings and made up appropriate words on the fly … there were tears when those rings were exchanged.
The bride arriving at the ceremony space after looking gorgeous walking down the rosebush aisle, said to me ‘Nadine, I am going to be sick’ and I just gently turned her shoulders into the rosebush near by while she vomited. Taking a break and regrouping after a glass of water … we conducted the ceremony and I know 10 years later that couple have delightfully survived the test of time.
The grooms who forgot their wedding corsages. That ceremony was conducted in Centennial Park, Cooks Hill. Across the road was a beautiful garden with spectacular flowers. I sent the groomsmen across the road to knock on the door and request 4 flowers. They came back with not only the flowers but pins to attach the flowers to their jackets.
The Friday I received a call from another celebrant to say she was off by ambulance to hospital. Collecting the necessary paperwork from her house on my way to King Edward Park, I arrived with plenty of time to introduce myself to the groom, quickly talk through the ceremony and then meet the bride in her arrival car before walking down the aisle. That bride and groom were very grateful, their family thrilled with the ceremony I conducted and after a short stay in hospital the original celebrant was discharged to rest at home.
Like a lot of other professions – you could write a book with the experiences gathered over the years. But really I just bring the learning from every ceremony and share it with the next. Creating a stress free environment on the day of the wedding, naming or renewal of vows.
It is very important to me to stay current with ceremony trends. Each year I have attended professional development training and the odd conference. This year I have joined The Celebrant Society who value community over competition and the sharing of trends, words, and advice is very real with this group. I also subscribe to UK and USA wedding sites to see what trends might be hitting Australia next season.
Love my job. Love the smiles on people’s faces as they acknowledge and take the time to celebrate a significant life event.